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Medical Biosciences Building named for Win and Maxine Wallin

Contacts: Sarah Youngerman, Minnesota Medical Foundation, syounger@umn.edu, 651-485-7171
Daniel Wolter, University News Service, wolter@umn.edu, 612-625-8510

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (06/21/2010) —In recognition of a lifetime of support, the University of Minnesota has named the newest building in its Biomedical Discovery District the Winston and Maxine Wallin Medical Biosciences Building.

The building houses researchers working in brain sciences, including Alzheimer’s disease and movement disorders, and immunology. It is part of the growing Biomedical Discovery District, a state-of-the-art research park located near TCF Bank Stadium.

“The Wallins’ generous gifts of time, talent and financial support have contributed immeasurably to the life and vitality of the University of Minnesota — their commitment to higher education and medical research is unrivaled,” said university President Robert Bruininks. “The Winston and Maxine Wallin Medical Biosciences Building aptly honors their longtime commitment to and support of the University of Minnesota.”

In addition to their generous financial support, the Wallins — both University of Minnesota graduates — have contributed their time and talents to the advancement of higher education, particularly in the health sciences.

In 1993, Winston “Win” Wallin became a special adviser to then-university President Nils Hasselmo, overseeing the Academic Health Center in a time of great turbulence and change. He also chaired the Masonic Cancer Center’s capital campaign, which raised $30 million to construct the Masonic Cancer Research Building — the only building on campus fully supported by private dollars. Additionally, he and Maxine personally established the Winston R. and Maxine H. Wallin Land-Grant Chair in Cancer Prevention and Genetics and were major contributors to the John H. Kersey Chair in Cancer Research.

As chair of the Medical School’s Dean’s Board of Visitors, an advisory group to the dean, Win Wallin was an early advocate of the Biomedical Discovery District and championed the importance of medical research to the future of the university and the state.

He is currently a trustee of the Minnesota Medical Foundation, a member of the Medical School Dean’s Board of Visitors and trustee emeritus of the University of Minnesota Foundation. In 1992, he was awarded the Outstanding Achievement Award and in 1995 was presented with an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from the Medical School.

Win and Maxine Wallin are recognized for their extraordinary commitment to higher education through a tremendously successful college scholarship program for Minneapolis high school students.

In his professional life, Win Wallin earned wide admiration for his strong and ethical leadership. After 34 years with Pillsbury, rising from grain trader to president and chief operating officer, he became chief executive officer of Medtronic, Inc., and within six years led the pioneering Minnesota medical device maker to world prominence.

He has served as Campaign Minnesota honorary co-chair and on the Masonic Cancer Center Community Advisory Board; as a member of the presidential advisory search committee in 1996; and chair of the Carlson School of Management Board of Overseers.

Building namings such as this are approved both by the All-University Honors Committee, which consists of faculty, students, staff and alumni as well as the Board of Regents.

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