Olson family donates $1 million to Marquette

A Marquette University alumnus has posthumously donated $1 million in merit-based achievement awards and annual support for professional faculty and staff development, Rev. Scott R. Pilarz, S.J., university president, announced.


Dr. Robert C. Olson, Davenport, Iowa, was a 1953 graduate of the Marquette University School of Medicine, now known as the Medical College of Wisconsin. Through the estate of the late Dr. Olson and his wife, Patricia Olson, the Olsons’ surviving children determined how to best continue their father’s legacy.

“This generous contribution from a legacy family will allow us to continue a larger drive for new excellence at Marquette University,” Pilarz said. “This gift offers an incredible opportunity for future generations of Marquette students to begin their own legacies by sharing their talents, dreams and hopes for the future.”

When not practicing medicine, Dr. Olson spent much of his time researching Jesuit priests, especially Father Jacques Marquette’s journey and explorations along the Mississippi River and Great Lakes, his family said.

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