College Guide


August 24, 2011 3:40 PM Cat College

By Daniel Luzer

A woman who died in 2009 apparently has left more than $7 million to the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of California, Davis. She has given the donation to honor her cat. According to a piece at KSWB News:

Maxine Adler brought her cat Du Bee to the school 10 years ago for cancer treatment. Though the cat died, Adler was grateful for the care Du Bee received, retired UC Davis executive Kelly Nimitz said.
Under the terms of the $7.6 million bequest, any cancer treatment discovered using the funds must include “Du Bee” in its name.

A photograph of Adler’s late cat will apparently hang in the school.

According to Kelly Nimtz, the former assistant dean of development at UC Davis:

This is a very competitive world. If you want the best feline researchers, you have to be able to guarantee them a resource base that would exceed what they might have anywhere else. You want the stars, and thanks to Maxine and her generosity, we will be able to attract them.

Nimtz managed to say this without laughing aloud. Getting “the best feline researchers” is apparently a priority.

The state of California, meanwhile, continues to cut funding for programs at its state universities. Students will pay almost $1,900 more this year (or $13,000 total) to attend college at UC Davis.

Adler, the widow of a computer company executive, had no children.

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer


  • Lee Gibson on August 25, 2011 9:51 AM:

    I usually appreciate your writings, but I must take exception to the snarky and dismissive tone here. If you have ever had a bond with an animal, you would perhaps be better able to appreciate this gesture and to understand that veterinary research has benefits to society that go well beyond the specifics of any particular species or program such as this. I myself have an extraordinary bond with a cat and would do the same without question if I had the resources.

  • libraryguy on August 25, 2011 10:32 AM:

    "Nimtz managed to say this without laughing aloud. Getting “the best feline researchers” is apparently a priority. "

    It was a priority to Maxine Adler.

    Really, I agree with Lee Gibson, this is just rude. The donor had her money and gets to decide what to do with it. It's not her fault that Californians have, for decades, shot themselves in both feet with mismanaged tax plans and political ineptitude. You want better funding for college students in California? Elect better representatives and governors and fight for it. Snark like this is worse than useless.

  • matt w on August 26, 2011 1:05 PM:

    Why wouldn't it be a priority for a school of veterinary medicine?