Cedar Falls couple give $10 million to the University of Northern Iowa

Cedar Falls couple give $10 million to the University of Northern Iowa

University of Northern Iowa President Nook announced a $10 million gift to the university at a meeting of the Iowa Board of Regents on Thursday, Nov. 14.

“David and Karen Takes have always shown strong leadership for UNI,” said Nook. “They have invested their time, talents and treasure in this university. This new gift builds on their passion for the university and will make our campus even stronger going forward.”

David Takes is a current member and past chair of the UNI Foundation’s Board of Trustees and a 1981 alumnus of the university.

“As long-time residents of Cedar Falls and as a proud alum, we are extremely grateful for everything the University of Northern Iowa and Panther Nation have brought to our family and our community at large,” said David. “The benefits we enjoy are truly priceless, and it is with this sense of gratitude that Karen and I make this commitment.”

The couple’s gift will support multiple programs and projects at UNI. A portion will be invested in the Takes Endowment, an endowment they established in 2015 to support UNI Business students gaining international experiences and increase cultural intelligence. The gift will also support the UNI Mascot Outreach Endowed Fund, which supports TC and TK, the university’s mascots, and the students who lead the mascot program.

Additional portions of the Takes’ gift will support future capital projects for the university.

“We are extremely grateful Dave and Karen are willing to show their commitment to the university and engage with us as we identify the next capital projects that are critical to UNI,” said Nook. “Knowing we have the support to explore projects that are central to UNI’s identity, Panther Athletics and the cultural vitality of the Cedar Valley and state of Iowa gives us momentum as we think about what our campus can look like for the future.”

Capital projects under exploration at UNI include the Campanile, the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, the Industrial Technology Center and the UNI-Dome. 

David is excited about what he sees at his alma mater—nimble academic program offerings and a high-quality student experience.

“For people who maybe haven’t been to UNI in the recent past, take time just to re-educate yourself about what is currently going on here. When you do, be prepared to be impressed.”

The Takes’ gift was made to the University of Northern Iowa through the UNI Foundation. For more information about the UNI Foundation, visit uni-foundation.org.