01 Sep 2014

Convening Power

Alumni gift will fund new campus gathering space


A significant new structure will open in 2018 on the HBS campus, designed to harness the energy, creativity, and ideas of the thousands of students, faculty, alumni, and leaders of all kinds who convene at the School each year. The facility, to be named Klarman Hall in recognition of a generous gift from Seth (MBA 1982) and Beth Klarman, will combine the elements of a large-scale conference center, a performance space, and an intimate community forum. Seth Klarman is president and CEO of the Baupost Group, a Boston-based investment management firm. His wife is president of the Klarman Family Foundation. Both are also members of the HBS Board of Dean’s Advisors.

In discussing their inspiration for the gift, Seth Klarman noted that HBS has a unique capacity to contribute to the public dialogue about effective and responsible management. “When you bring people with talent, vision, and ambition together in a space designed specifically to facilitate connections, conversation, and debate, the potential for transformative ideas and action is limitless,” he said. “Beth and I believe game-changing innovations will emerge from this space. HBS has played an important and ongoing role in my life and it’s a privilege to be able to give back to a school that has given us so much.”

“Harvard Business School was transformative for Seth,” added Beth Klarman. “He is truly one of the School’s success stories—not just in his business success, but in the way he lives his life. Giving back has always been important to both of us and we hope the new convening center will be a place to develop and share ideas that have a meaningful and positive impact.”

HBS hosts some 700 events a year ranging in nature from research conferences to symposia to cultural events. To be located next to the Spangler Center, Klarman Hall will be designed by Boston-based William Rawn and Associates, architects of the recently opened Tata Hall, as a vibrant space with an eye toward flexibility, adaptability, and accessibility.

“With this wonderful gift,” said Dean Nitin Nohria, “the Klarmans enable us to bring together leaders—in academia, in business, and in policy—in a world-class way to spur not just dialogue but action. We know that if we can create a gathering place of high functionality and high purpose, and if we leverage our convening power within that space, we can significantly affect the public debate about issues that are of the greatest importance to people at this School, in this country, and around the globe.”

The Klarmans’ gift is part of the Harvard Business School Campaign, which the School launched in April with a goal of raising $1 billion over the next five years.

Featured Alumni

Featured Alumni

Class of MBA 1982, Section I

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