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Robert Rothman '77

In appreciation for his MBA education at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, Robert Rothman, ’77, has made a gift to the school to support its London campus and its Global Faculty in Residence Program. Rothman’s esteemed career included spending significant time in the United Kingdom. In recognition of this generous gift, the campus will be renamed the Robert Rothman, ’77, London Campus.

“It was a natural fit for me, supporting Chicago Booth in London,” Rothman said. “The business school is an important part of who I am, and it’s good to see the school flourish in Europe.”

From 1987 through 1999, Rothman was chairman and CEO of Consolidated International Insurance Group Inc. During that time, he traveled to London regularly and had a second home there. Over seven years, Rothman’s team grew Consolidated’s European revenue from $60 million to more than $500 million, at which time the company was sold to General Electric. At the same time, Consolidated grew its North American business and successfully exited a global reinsurance business headquartered in the United States. In 1999, when Consolidated was sold, it was considered one of the most dramatic turnarounds in the insurance industry.

“I’d travel to our other European offices, and whenever I came back to London, it felt like home,” he said. “To me, London is where I experienced my greatest success, and I have always found the city to be fun and rewarding—both professionally and personally.”

Located near St. Paul’s Cathedral in the heart of London’s business community, the school’s stunning new London campus serves as a hub to build on Booth’s commitment to facilitate world-class business education, leadership insights, and partnerships in London and throughout Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. The campus is designed to be a place where students, alumni, local business leaders, innovative thinkers, and organizations from across the EMEA region can come together to share ideas and collaborate on thought leadership. 

“My wife, Peggy, and I have visited the campus, and it’s an impressive building in a vibrant area,” Rothman said. “It’s very well done, and it’s good to see the university have a solid foothold in Europe.”

“It was a natural fit for me, supporting Chicago Booth in London. The business school is an important part of who I am, and it’s good to see the school flourish in Europe.”

— Bob Rothman

Booth has been in London since 2005, and moved to its current space in Barts Square in 2020. It is the first US business school with campuses on three continents (Asia, Europe, and North America). The school’s new campus underscores the importance of Booth’s presence in London and facilitates enhanced opportunities for the school to expand its impact across the region. It is home to Booth’s Executive MBA Program London and Executive Education courses, and it provides a state-of-the-art location for events and education within one of the world’s leading centers of banking, finance, and tech.

Rothman’s gift will also name and support the new Global Faculty in Residence Program in London, which will allow a senior faculty member to spend one to three quarters at the London Campus. The program’s primary goal is to strengthen and broaden Booth’s visibility in London and across EMEA.

Raghuram G. Rajan will be the inaugural Global Faculty in Residence in London during Spring Quarter 2023. Rajan is the Katherine Dusak Miller Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at Chicago Booth. He was the 23rd Governor of the Reserve Bank of India from 2013 to 2016. Rajan was also the chief economist and director of research at the International Monetary Fund from 2003 to 2006.

Anil Kashyap will be the second Global Faculty in Residence, in the fall of 2023. Kashyap is the Stevens Distinguished Service Professor of Economics and Finance at Chicago Booth. He is also a consultant for the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. From 2016 to 2022, Kashyap was an external member of the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee.

“Bob has been a dedicated supporter of the school throughout the years in so many ways,” said Madhav Rajan, Chicago Booth Dean and the George Pratt Shultz Professor of Accounting. “We are incredibly grateful for his investment, which will strengthen Booth’s presence in EMEA, and are delighted to recognize his generosity with the naming of our London campus.”

“To me, the University of Chicago stands for true freedom of expression, it’s a real beacon for diversity of thought—a place where the best idea wins.”

— Bob Rothman

Rothman previously supported the school’s Hyde Park campus, where the Rothman Winter Garden at Charles M. Harper Center was named in his honor. In addition, he created and endowed the Rothman Family Professorship Fund. He also gives his time to the school, serving on the Council on Chicago Booth since 1999.

In 1999, after 20-plus years of success in the insurance business, Rothman retired. That retirement lasted about six weeks as he quickly grew bored and went on to launch the Black Diamond Group, a family-run private investment company that includes both his son Michael, ’12, and his son-in-law.

“After my mother died when I was 7, my father changed careers to work for the City of New York to better provide for my brother and me,” Rothman said. “He never passed up an opportunity to tell me how important it is to get a good education, and I did. To me, the University of Chicago stands for true freedom of expression. It’s a real beacon for diversity of thought—a place where the best idea wins.”

Prior to entering the business field, Rothman wanted to become a doctor, and he still has an interest in medicine and research. Since 2000, he has been on the board of the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, Florida, advancing their mission of contributing to the prevention and cure of cancer and affirming his belief in the importance of philanthropy.

“I remember looking up at the ceiling of Rockefeller Chapel when I first came to campus and thinking someone before me made this all possible,” he said. “If we’re able, we should spend some part of our life helping others, and investing in education is a way to give individuals their best opportunity.”

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