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MEDIA CONTACT: Linda Holtz
561-297-0159, lholtz@fau.edu

FAU Hosts Luncheon to Honor Suheyla Gencsoy for her Philanthropic Work in South Florida Community

            FORT LAUDERDALE, FL (June 29, 2007) – Florida Atlantic University President Frank T. Brogan ’81 and the FAU Foundation recently hosted a special luncheon to honor Suheyla “Sue” Gencsoy at the Tower Club in downtown Fort Lauderdale.   Close to 50 people gathered to pay tribute to Gencsoy, a member of the FAU Foundation Board and an instrumental philanthropic force in the South Florida community.   Her efforts on behalf of cultural causes and higher education, both in the Republic of Turkey and the United States, have earned her respect and wide recognition.   The luncheon also served as a fundraising event, with guests in attendance contributing more than $36,000 to the Suheyla Gencsoy Spirit of Freedom Scholarship, a scholarship fund established in 2006 for students with an interest in Turkish studies in the international business program of FAU’s Barry Kaye College of Business.

            Born in Istanbul to a prominent family of lawyers, military leaders and statesmen, Gencsoy was exposed early on to the virtues of public service.   To help strengthen economic and cultural ties between the U.S. and Turkey, Gencsoy, with help from Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle and Turkish President Turgut Ozal, founded the Turkish-American Business, Education and Cultural Development Committee in 1994.  

            In support of FAU's academic program, Gencsoy raised $600,000 in the Republic of Turkey. This gift was matched by the state of Florida to create a $1 million Eminent Scholar Chair in Turkish Business Studies in FAU's College of Business.   This chair was designed to improve the quality of life in Turkey and to help bridge east and west, through academic programs, research opportunities and interpersonal exchanges.   

            “Thanks to Sue Gencsoy’s vision and unfaltering drive, FAU is engaged in a unique partnership with business leaders and academicians from the Republic of Turkey,” said FAU President Frank T. Brogan ’81 in his remarks at the event.   “No one understands the potential of this relationship better than Suheyla Gencsoy.   What she has accomplished in raising awareness of international business studies is monumental.”  

            Among those in attendance at the luncheon were the Honorable Jim Naugle, Jack Latona, Nick Navarro, Sue Gunzburger and Dean of the College of Business Dennis Coates.   To receive more information on the Suheyla Gencsoy Spirit of Freedom Scholarship or the Eminent Scholar Chair in Turkish Business Studies, contact Deborah “Dee” Robinson, associate vice president, University Advancement, at 561-297-3015 or drobin1@fau.edu.

- FAU -

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serv es more than 26,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses strategically located along 150 miles of Florida's southeastern coastline. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts nine colleges:  the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Biomedical Science, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Barry Kaye College of Business and the Colleges of   Education, Engineering & Computer Science, and Architecture, Urban & Public Affairs.

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