Colorado State’s Warner College of Natural Resources Receives $1.5 Million Gift

Colorado State University’s Warner College of Natural Resources received a $1.5 million gift from Jim Kennedy that will help promote sustainability and conservation efforts in natural resources management.

As part of the Campaign for Colorado State University, the gift will help support two college initiatives: an endowed chair in wildlife conservation in the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology and the new Conservation Leadership Through Learning Initiative, which is being led by the Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources.

“We are grateful for Mr. Kennedy’s extremely generous philanthropic investment to both of these priority initiatives. The Warner College has a long-standing commitment to conservation and conservation education. It is because of individuals like Mr. Kennedy that we are able to sustain and expand innovative programs. The real beneficiaries are the students and faculty. These programs will significantly enhance the college’s reputation for excellence in natural resources learning, discovery and engagement,” said Joyce Berry, dean of the Warner College of Natural Resources.

The wildlife conservation faculty chair will enhance opportunities for research on wildlife populations, especially related to big game conservation, and encourage collaborations to solve state, national and international issues.

The Conservation Leadership Through Learning initiative is motivated by a new concept in conservation education that blends disciplines, cultures and learning methods. It will build upon a tradition of success to create a new generation of leaders who will guide the way to a sustainable future.

The initiative will employ integrated coursework that draws from three core areas: natural and physical sciences, social sciences, management and leadership. Students will participate in coursework and field work in Colorado and Mexico.

Kennedy was chairman and CEO of privately held Cox Enterprises Inc., for 20 years before retiring as CEO in January 2009. He continues as chairman of the company. Cox Enterprises Inc. is a leading communications, media and automotive services company. Under Kennedy’s leadership, Cox Enterprises created Cox Conserves – the company’s national sustainability program – to conserve resources, embrace renewable forms of energy and reduce the company’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2017. Cox Conserves also encourages the company’s 66,000 employees and the communities Cox serves to engage in eco-friendly practices. The Georgia Conservancy named Kennedy as its 2009 Distinguished Conservationist of the Year in recognition of his longtime commitment to the environment.

About the Warner College of Natural Resources

CSU’s Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology is one of the oldest and most prestigious in the country and has consistently ranked as one of the top programs in terms of scholarly productivity. The department has a long and distinguished history in education and research of wildlife populations, often collaborating with federal and state agencies such as the Colorado Division of Wildlife. Such research has provided shared learning and training of future wildlife professionals to ensure the management and conservation of wildlife.

CSU’s Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources is dedicated to the conservation, stewardship and enjoyment of natural and cultural resources and the sustainable management of those resources. The department focuses on understanding and attending to the needs and values of humans, society and culture as they related to the natural environment.

Since 1904, the Warner College of Natural Resources has become the most comprehensive natural resources college in the country. Faculty, students and scientists working in campus classrooms and laboratories, in the field, and at project sites around the world use an integrated system approach to develop solutions for critical environmental problems.

To learn more about CSU’s new Conservation Leadership Through Learning initiative, visit

About the Campaign for Colorado State University

In August 2009, Colorado State University launched the public phase of the first comprehensive campaign in the university’s 139-year history.

The goal of the Campaign for Colorado State University is to raise $500 million in private support from July 1, 2005 – June 30, 2012. To date, the university has surpassed the $300 million mark. Kennedy’s gift contributes to the campaign.

The campaign focuses on ensuring student access to a world-class education through scholarships and fellowships; provides funds for research, outreach, economic development, technology advancements, and learning outside the classroom; and supports new and renovated facilities – from labs to classrooms to athletic facilities.