Jon Shirley, of Medina, Wash., retired president of Microsoft Corporation, philanthropist, and renowned art and car collector, has made an extraordinary $5 million gift to The Hill School – a gift that will immediately advance the boarding high school’s new engineering-related curriculum and facility.
Shirley is a member of The Hill School’s class of 1956 and a former 16-year member of The Hill’s Board of Trustees.
Among other initiatives, Shirley’s generous gift primarily will support the design and construction of the $25 million Quadrivium Center, The Hill’s planned home for a new, cutting-edge curriculum encompassing courses and activities in science, technology, engineering, math, and design. Shirley joins the High Meadows Foundation and its Chairman Carl Ferenbach (class of 1960), as well as Philip Hammarskjold (class of 1983) and his wife, Alicia, in providing key early philanthropic support for this transformational project.
The Quadrivium Center and program will empower Hill students to address what Shirley believes to be a nationwide shortage of students pursuing STEM disciplines in higher education and related careers.
“We are very grateful for Jon’s long and inspirational support and his forward-thinking counsel, particularly as we launch this new program fulfilling The Hill School mission – ‘to prepare students for college, careers, and life’ – by implementing rigorous 21st century interdisciplinary studies that spark creative problem-solving and an entrepreneurial mindset,” said Headmaster Zachary G. Lehman.
“Jon’s generosity reflects his desire to ensure that Hill’s diverse, talented students experience innovative academic programs that foster critical thinking, teamwork, and other career-focused skills complementing Hill’s liberal arts emphasis,” said Lehman.