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University to partner with Pulte Family Charitable Foundation to launch anti-poverty programs

| Wednesday, November 27, 2019

The Pulte Family Charitable Foundation has agreed to a $111 million partnership with Notre Dame that will be directed towards programs to fight poverty on a global scale, according to a Monday press release.

The partnership will be the largest of its kind at the University, with the endowments focused on serving “the most alienated and the most displaced,” the release said.

The money associated with the partnership with be distributed between six initiatives including two programs associated with the Keough School of Global Affairs to address global poverty and inequality, two need-based scholarship funds for students, an endowment to support a research center in the University’s department of economics and a directorship of the Pulte Institute for Global Development.

The Pulte Family Charitable Foundation was founded to serve the needs of the most marginalized members of society while maintaining core beliefs rooted in Catholic faith.

“To this end, the foundation strives to enact through its grantees the seven corporeal works of mercy: feed the hungry; give drink to the thirsty; clothe the naked; care for captives; shelter the homeless; visit the sick; and assist the mourning,” the release said.

Bill Pulte, a philanthropist and innovator in the home building industry, founded Pulte Homes, which would later become PulteGroup. He died in 2018 at the age of 85.

Bill’s wife, Karen Pulte, now serves the family’s foundation as a board member and director of its scholarship program, the release said.

“ … Bill wanted more impact on a larger scale,” Karen said in the release. “That’s why the combination of the Pulte Family Charitable Foundation and Notre Dame makes so much sense. Together, we will leverage our resources to finally put an end to global poverty once and for all. It is a daunting task, but Bill Pulte always dreamed of a better tomorrow for all people. Bill would be very proud of this new relationship with Notre Dame.”

Nancy Pulte Rickard and Mark Pulte also direct the foundation as the president and vice president of the foundation respectively.

“What we do and the decisions we make now will make all the difference in our being a dynamic and relevant entity — taking on current and future philanthropic challenges and addressing humanitarian issues — versus an old-school foundation that functions under the most conservative principles and practices,” Rickard said in the release.

University President Fr. John Jenkins said words alone cannot express Notre Dame’s gratitude to the Pulte family.

“Our distinctive mission, our guiding faith, our global reach, the world’s best minds and our characteristic hope make this an enduring effort that, together with the Pulte Family Charitable Foundation, will find the best answers to the problem of poverty,” Jenkins said.

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