Dunn-Edwards Corporation Contributes $600,000 to Cal Poly's Western Coatings Technology Center
Dunn-Edwards Corporation of Los Angeles and company owner Ken Edwards have teamed up to contribute $600,000 to the College of Science and Mathematics Western Coatings Technology Center (WCTC) at Cal Poly.
The university will name the new Dunn-Edwards Coatings Formulation Laboratory in honor of the donation. The laboratory will be located in the WCTC. The university has so far raised more than $1 million toward the campaign goal of $5 million to fund the center.
“Dunn-Edwards Corporation and Ken Edwards in particular are continuing to provide leadership for this important research center,” said College of Science and Mathematics Dean Philip S. Bailey. “The WCTC is the only such center on the West Coast, and Cal Poly students, as well as the coatings and polymers industry, will benefit greatly from the modern research facilities.”
The Dunn-Edwards Coatings Formulation Laboratory will be named in perpetuity, recognizing the leadership and generosity of both the Dunn-Edwards Company and Ken Edwards, said Bailey. Edwards has been involved with the coatings and polymers program in the university’s Chemistry and Biochemistry Department for more than two decades and is the current chair of the WCTC fund-raising campaign.
The WCTC will expand industry-sponsored research on campus, while providing state-of-the-art facilities for students to learn and conduct real-world research with faculty and industry mentors, according to Bailey. Cal Poly currently offers an undergraduate degree program with a concentration in coatings science and polymers, as well as an industry-focused master’s degree in the same area.
Edwards praised the program for its ability to enhance Cal Poly’s efforts in research and development, thereby benefiting industry. “Two associates and I visited Cal Poly in the mid-1980s and liked what we saw. We were impressed by the quality of the students, the faculty and the hands-on training,” he said. “Cal Poly is the only university in the West where students can receive such intensive education in coatings and polymers.”
This is the second major gift from Dunn-Edwards to Cal Poly’s College of Science and Mathematics. In November 2002 the company contributed the lead gift of $500,000 to create the first endowed professorship at the university. More than 21 donors representing a broad spectrum of the coatings and polymers industry added to the fund, bringing the group gift total to $1 million. It created The Arthur C. Edwards Endowed Chair for Coatings Technology and Ecology in honor of Ken Edward’s father, the co-founder of Dunn-Edwards. Professor Raymond Fernando was appointed to the chair in 2002.
Founded in 1925 and family-owned, the Dunn-Edwards Corporation is a
manufacturer and supplier of premium quality architectural coatings.
In 2001, the company became the largest employee-owned paint manufacturer
in the United States. "The Dunn-Edwards Corporation has always
focused on making the best can of paint for professional painters,”
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