Founder and currently the Chief Executive Officer of Cassat Corporation, William T. Coleman III is a bearer of hope for many in Colorado. The 61-year old former Chairman and CEO (1995-2001) of BEA Systems Incorporated in San Jose, California was also a co-founder of the global software company that specializes in e-business infrastructure.
William “Bill” Coleman’s network of influence includes the Silicon Valley Leadership Group (as its chairman), Council on Foreign Relations, and The American Electronics Association (as board of directors member). At present, he is a key member of the boards of Palm and Symantec.
In comparison to most philanthropists, William Coleman and his wife Claudia choose not to spread their donations too thinly over numerous organizations. Instead, they take a local and hands-on approach when it comes to their philanthropic efforts. Their devotion to philanthropy is a result of their concern for their niece’s cognitive disability. However, in the mid 1980’s, with the advent of technology and the computer, they saw for themselves how her focus, dexterity and learning skills have significantly improved.
Thus, their enthusiasm in finding treatments for cognitive disabilities with technology ignited their desire to support an institution that focuses on research and projects geared toward this particular cause.
• In 2000, together with his wife, William Coleman initiated a long-term partnership with the University of Colorado. In a year’s time, the Coleman Institute for Cognitive Disabilities began its operations, dedicating its advanced development and research capacities to the improvement of the lives of the afflicted.
• As written in the Institute’s mission, it exists solely “to catalyze and integrate advances in science, engineering and technology to promote the quality of life and independent living of people with cognitive disabilities.”
• William T. and Claudia L. Coleman continue to give annual contributions to the original private endowment of $250 million in order to further the Institute’s programs and research projects.
• The Coleman-Turner Chair in Cognitive Disability was a position created through the couple’s generous endowment. David Braddock, PhD, Associate Vice President of the University of Colorado, has been executive director since its institution.
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