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'One Tough Mother' Puts An End To Donation Rumors

OPB | Aug. 29, 2014 11:54 a.m. | Updated: Aug. 29, 2014 6:26 p.m. | Portland

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That anonymous $100 million donation to the Knight Cancer Institute earlier this summer couldn’t stay secret for long.

As I reported a few weeks ago, via Willamette Week, rumors were swirling that the very generous donor was none other than  Columbia Sportswear chairwoman Gert Boyle. Boyle has now proved the town gossip true on the Oregon Science and Health University’s Facebook page.

The company’s “One Tough Mother” is featured in a YouTube video with Brian Druker, director of OHSU Knight Cancer Institute, sharing a glass of lemonade and “gossiping” about the big chunk of change given to the institute in July.

“Really? It must have been a very wealthy man who did that,” she says with a not-so-convincing tone of surprise.

Neither actually says that it was Boyle all along, but with a title like, “Let’s put those rumors to rest… Give with Gert,” you get the idea.

Boyle’s contribution is the largest individual donation to OHSU in its campaign to raise $1 billion for cancer research. Nike Chairman Phil Knight kicked things off by promising a $500 million match if the school could raise the rest by 2016.

Following Boyle’s donation, OPB’s Kristian Foden-Vencil reported OHSU had raised more than $418 million.

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