Billionaire Michigan State University alumnus philanthropist Eli Broad



In this Oct. 17, 2007, file photo, Eli Broad, founder of SunAmerica Inc. and KB Home speaks after receiving the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy in Pittsburgh. Eli Broad, the billionaire philanthropist, contemporary art collector and entrepreneur who co-founded homebuilding pioneer Kaufman and Broad Inc. and launched financial services giant SunAmerica Inc., died Friday, April 30, 2021 in Los Angeles. He was 87. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)EAST LANSING, MI — Billionaire and philanthropist Eli Broad died Friday, April 30, after a long illness at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles at the age of 87. A Detroit native, Broad graduated from Michigan State University. MSU’s President Samuel L. Stanley shared his thoughts on Broad’s death Saturday.“I am deeply saddened by the passing of MSU alumnus, humanitarian and philanthropist Eli Broad and my heart is with Edythe and the entire Broad family,” said Stanley Jr. “Eli was a selfless, kindhearted man who dedicated much of his life to making the lives of others better. From the classroom to the board room, altruism was the backbone of his mission, and Eli embodied what it means to be a Spartan.”Broad was also a contemporary art collector and entrepreneur who co-founded homebuilding pioneer Kaufman and Broad Inc. and launched financial services giant SunAmerica Inc., The Associated Press reports. Born in New York City to Lithuanian immigrants, Broad was raised in Detroit and earned his undergraduate degree from Michigan State University in 1954. In 1991, he endowed the university’s Eli Broad College of Business and Eli Broad Graduate School of Management. London-based architect company Zaha Hadid Architects designed the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum on Michigan State University’s campus. This is the second building by Zaha Hadid Architects. The other is the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.(Mike Mulholland | MLive.com)When he was 20, Broad passed Michigan’s certified public accountant exam, becoming the youngest person at the time to do so. The following year, he married Edythe, with whom he had two sons, Jeffrey and Gary. His wife and sons survive him, according to The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation. At age 23 in 1957, Broad went into business with developer Donald Kaufman, selling homes in the suburbs of Detroit. The first homes sold for about $12,000, about 10% less than competitors because they were built without customary basements and in about half the time, according to The AP. Kaufman and Broad took their approach West, first to Arizona then California. They relocated the company’s corporate headquarters to Los Angeles in 1963, two years after it became the first homebuilder to go public. Broad later transformed the company’s insurance arm into a retirement savings conglomerate that catered to the financial needs of aging baby boomers. He ended up becoming one of the country’s richest men. Forbes magazine on Saturday estimated his net worth at $6.9 billion.

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