November 28, 2016
Eastman School of Music Receives $2.5 Million in Leadership Support
George W. Hamlin, IV, chair of Eastman’s Board of Managers, and his wife, Mary, have made a $2.5 million commitment to the Eastman School of Music. As longtime friends of Eastman, the Hamlins have provided faculty and student support by creating the Hamlin Family Director of the Institute for Music Leadership and the Hamlin Family Scholarship.
University of Rochester President and CEO Joel Seligman remarked that the Hamlins’ gift strengthens Eastman’s legacy of developing and providing music leadership. “On behalf of the University and the entire Rochester community, I would like to offer my deepest thanks to the Hamlins for their visionary support,” Seligman said. “Their gift fortifies Eastman’s future as a world-class, comprehensive school of music, whose graduates will be forging the new paths that enhance our lives through music.”
The Institute for Music Leadership prepares Eastman students to be entrepreneurial thinkers and leaders of musical arts organizations by providing the knowledge and skills they need to be innovative and successful in today’s ever-changing musical landscape.
Since its creation in 2001, the Institute has only had two directors, Ramon Ricker (2001–2015) and James Doser (2015–present). Ricker and Doser both hold a special place in the Hamlin family’s heart, as they were teachers and mentors to their son, Alex. Doser gave Alex private lessons throughout middle and high school, and Ricker was his saxophone professor at Eastman, from which he graduated in 2000 with a bachelor’s degree in saxophone performance. The Hamlin Family Directorship honors the family’s association with the institute by providing support for its director and the institute’s mission in perpetuity.
The Hamlin Family’s aim is to “fill the gap” for excellent young musicians who are passionate about music and attending Eastman. The scholarship gives those exceptional students (Hamlin Scholars) the means to overcome financial obstacles that might have forced them to attend a school that was their second or third choice.
“Eastman is committed to enrolling outstanding students who are cognizant of an artist’s responsibility to society, and who desire to make a difference in the world through their music and their actions,” said Jamal Rossi, the Joan and Martin Messinger Dean of the Eastman School of Music. “I couldn’t be more thankful for the Hamlin family for their gift, which gets to the heart of this mission.”
Both the scholarship and directorship are rooted in the Hamlin family’s belief in music’s intangible and immeasurable value to humanity, and Eastman’s role in shaping its delivery.
“We are building a bridge to help the best and brightest attend Eastman so that they develop the artistry, versatility, and adaptability that captivates, comforts, and inspires humankind,” George Hamlin said. “Music has been a constant and binding force in our lives. We have witnessed its influence provide balance and beauty and believe it underpins the best that life can offer. It is a special honor for my wife and me to underwrite and encourage this kind of an impact on society.”
Mary Hamlin attended Arizona State University on a piano scholarship, graduating with an education degree. In addition to chairing Eastman’s Board of Managers, George Hamlin is a member of Eastman’s National Council and is the immediate former chair of the University of Rochester Medical Center Board for which he has been a member since its inception. Alex Hamlin and his wife are performing musicians based in New York City. Mary and George Hamlin are also among the inaugural members of the George Eastman Circle, the University’s leadership annual giving society.
For more information contact Helene Snihur (585-274-1057, [email protected])