A newly established Board of Overseers will guide the development of the Keck School of Medicine.
USC President Steven B. Sample announced on Thursday that Simon and Virginia Ramo will be the founding co-chairs of the body, set up to advise the USC president and the medical school dean on the operation of the Keck School, and to assist in raising funds to match, on a three-to-one basis, the $110 million Keck gift.
“Success in this exceptional task will require people of exceptional caliber,” said Sample, “and that is why I am delighted that Si and Virginia have agreed to step into this role.”
Simon Ramo, a noted scientist, entrepreneur, author and philanthropist, is a recipient of the nation’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Perhaps best known as the “R” in TRW, Inc., the high technology aerospace corporation he co-founded, he is also a founding member of the National Academy of Engineering and a member of the National Academy of Sciences in honor of his distin-guished career as a pioneer in microwaves and electronics (he developed General Electric corporation’s electron microscope) as well as space technology. He has often served as a senior advisor to the U.S. government in science and technology issues.
Simon Ramo has also been a member of the board of the W. M. Keck Foundation since 1983, and is the recipient of numerous national awards and honorary degrees, and the author of books on economics and tennis, in addition to widely-used texts on science, management and engineering.
His wife, Virginia Ramo, is a USC alumna and co-founder of the Ramo Foundation, whose philanthropy has made possible USC’s Virginia Ramo Music Hall, the Ramo auditorium at Caltech, as well as endowed chairs, awards and scholarships at various universities.
She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Asa V. Call award, USC’s highest alumni honor, and has received an honorary doctorate in humane letters from her alma mater.
Other founding members of the Board of Overseers will include Sample, USC Board of Trustees chairman Malcolm R. Currie; USC Senior Vice President for Medical Care and Keck School of Medicine Dean Stephen J. Ryan; and Robert A. Day, chairman and president of the W.M. Keck Foundation.
Additional members of the board will be named in coming months, Sample indicated.