Carol Meeks, Dean, College of Family and Consumer Sciences, (515) 294-0860
Mary Jo Glanville, College of Family and Consumer Sciences, (515) 294-8799
Thomas Mitchell, ISU Foundation, (515) 294-4607
Kevin Brown, News Service, (515) 294-8986


AMES, Iowa – Iowa State University’s new Palmer Human Development and Family Studies Building will be dedicated at 12:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 7. The building, part of the College of Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS), is adjacent to MacKay Hall on central campus. The dedication highlights Iowa State’s yearlong "Strengthening families to become the best" celebration.

The building is named for Barbara Raeder Palmer and James R. Palmer of State College, Penn., whose $1 million gift to Iowa State initiated the project. Barbara Raeder Palmer received a B.S. in household equipment from Iowa State in 1946. James Palmer received B.S. in electrical engineering from Iowa State in 1944.

Dedication speakers will include the Palmers; Richard Seagrave, Iowa State interim president; Carol Meeks, FCS dean; Owen Newlin, president, Board of Regents, State of Iowa; and Joanna Cemore, graduate student. The ceremony also will feature a performance by the Child Development Laboratory School All-Day kindergartners and teachers.

The Palmer Human Development and Family Studies Building opened in March. The first FCS program to be housed in the 30,000-square-foot, three-story building was the Child Development Laboratory School. The building also houses the human development and family studies department, student support areas, the Marriage and Family Therapy and the Family Financial Counseling clinics.

"We are happy to be part of the new building for Human Development and Family Studies," James Palmer said. "One of the crisis issues in our country today is the need to strengthen the family and to provide for children throughout the world. The education and research that will be housed in this new facility is important in furthering those goals."

"Barbara and Jim Palmer are generous people who have made an impressive impact as parents, civic leaders, astute business persons, art patrons, philanthropists, and perhaps most importantly, as loyal ISU alumni," said Tom Mitchell, ISU Foundation president. "Their generosity to Iowa State has ranged from buildings and artwork to student scholarships and faculty chairs."

James Palmer, who began investing in the cable television industry in 1968, served for 31 years as chief executive of C-COR Electronics, Inc., a firm that develops and manufactures amplifiers and other devices for data communications and cable television industries. He is an ISU Foundation Governor and former member of the Board of Directors. He served on the Governors’ Investment Committee for six years, including four years as its chair.

Barbara Palmer was a director of C-COR for more than 23 years. She is active in women’s philanthropy and is helping to establish a women’s philanthropy program at Iowa State.

"The college’s faculty, staff, students and alumni are ecstatic to have this space connected with our current facilities," said Carol Meeks, dean. "It is wonderful to have a state-of-the-art facility for student use and participation. The building is truly a gift from the college’s alumni and friends. Through gifts that ranged from $1 to more than $1 million, nearly 1,750 individuals, companies, and foundations provided 87 percent of the $8.3 million needed to construct the facility."

The fund raising for the building was part of the ISU Foundation’s Campaign Destiny: To Become the Best, the largest private giving initiative in Iowa State history. The campaign, which officially concluded June 30, reached a record $458.6 million in outright and deferred gifts. The Palmer Human Development and Family Studies Building is one of more than 50 major building projects made possible by the campaign.


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