Boston College added another prominent name to its family of residential buildings last month, with the Dec. 13 dedication of 80 Commonwealth Ave. in honor of investment expert and Boston College parent Mario J. Gabelli.
An audience of approximately 80, which included members and friends of the Gabelli family, attended the ceremony in the Gabelli Hall common room. University President J. Donald Monan, SJ, Trustee Chairman Geoffrey Boisi and other speakers praised Gabelli for his spiritual, as well as financial and professional contributions to Boston College, and his support of higher education in general. His activities have included service on the Wall Street Council Executive Committee, National Development Board and the Trustee Development Committee's Corporate-Foundations Committee.
Fr. Monan pointed out that Gabelli Hall serves as an important gateway to the University because of its location on Commonwealth Avenue. The building's name brings with it a personality, he said, that is "elegant, distinguished, that stands for high quality." Gabelli Hall, he added, with its elements of the Gothic architecture found in Boston College's earliest buildings, will enable those who pass by the campus to gain "a true conception of the aspirations of the University."
Gabelli Hall will also leave a valuable impression on its resident students, Fr. Monan continued, symbolizing a family's commitment to and belief in higher education, as well as Gabelli's generosity and dedication to the University.
"We recognize the understanding of Mario for young people, his concern for young people," Fr. Monan said, "and his concern for education - and his recognition of the importance of higher education in the lives of young people."
Boisi called Gabelli an "extraordinary" and "deeply committed" friend of the University. "Judged on the merits of his personal life, his public service and philanthropic activities, and as both an outstanding product and a dedicated proponent of Jesuit education, Mario Gabelli ranks among the masters," Boisi said.
Gabelli, chairman of Gabelli Funds and chairman and CEO of Lynch Corp., commended Boston College for its development into a major institution while upholding the tradition of Jesuit education. Although he commuted to Fordham University as an undergraduate, Gabelli said he came to recognize the critical role campus and residential life plays in higher education. It also became an issue of personal importance since three of his four children came to study at Boston College.
Supporting higher education "is how we can contribute something back," Gabelli said. "From all of us in this extended global family who are part of the desire to educate the next generation of leaders, lawyers, doctors and others who will benefit mankind, we thank you."
During his remarks Gabelli also recalled the example set by his friend and associate, the late William Vouté, a University trustee for whom the residential building at 110 Commonwealth Ave. was dedicated in 1989.
University Housing Director Robert Capalbo and Pamela Sanchez '96, a Gabelli Hall residential assistant, noted some of the building's features, including its library, music and exercise rooms, and its Romance Language Floor. Sanchez described the numerous events held at the building which reflect the University's academic and philanthropic character. Capalbo said Gabelli Hall provides "an environment which complements Boston College's mission."
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