Leadership Advisory Board

Leaders from the realms of business, academia and the community help to refine the Taubman Institute’s vision, to monitor progress and to provide support, advice and counsel.

taubman-alfredA. Alfred Taubman


Developer of high-end shopping malls, A. Alfred Taubman has been involved in many other business enterprises from A&W Restaurants to Sotheby’s auction house. He has been involved in numerous philanthropic endeavors, but has been particularly generous to the University of Michigan, with financial gifts totaling more than $142 million and tireless personal support of university programs.

kalisman-taubman-gayleGayle Taubman Kalisman


President of The Taubman Foundation, Gayle Taubman Kalisman received a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Teaching Certification at the University of Michigan and her Doctor of Education at Columbia University, supplementing her Master's degrees in Education and the Arts.

applebaumEugene Applebaum

Founder of Arbor Drugs, Inc., Eugene Applebaum now is President of Arbor Investments Group, which oversees his real estate and financial ventures. He is widely recognized for his humanitarian and philanthropic work, with an emphasis on the Jewish community, health care, and the growth and well-being of Metro Detroit.

briskinEdith S. Briskin

Edith Briskin supervises her family’s Shirley K. Schlafer Foundation, which donates money to pediatric cancer research and to arts programs for children at risk and disadvantaged children. It also supports young women medical researchers at the University of Michigan. She has been an active volunteer in other arts and educational institutions.

dantoJoanne Danto

Following a career in the performing arts, Joanne Danto shares responsibility for the arts-related philanthropic activities of her family. A resident of Birmingham, Michigan, she is a board member of several cultural institutions.

boisrouvrayCountess Albina du Boisrouvray

A journalist and literary publisher, she launched her own film company, Albina Productions, which produced 22 movies in 17 years. But when her son died in a helicopter accident, she dedicated herself to FXB, named in his honor, a humanitarian service organization providing support to children suffering from AIDS.

davidsonKaren Davidson

The wife of the late William Davidson, who was well-known for his philanthropy as well as his leadership of Guardian Industries and the NBA’s Detroit Pistons, Karen Davidson is an equally staunch supporter of educational, cultural and health care institutions.

eisenbergKenneth Eisenberg

Kenneth Eisenberg is the Chairman and CEO of Kenwal Steel Corporation, based in Dearborn, Michigan. He and his wife Frances have supported dozens of social, health-care and Jewish organizations. In addition, they founded the Frances and Kenneth Eisenberg Institute for Historical Studies at their alma mater, U-M.

ford-edselEdsel B. Ford II

The great-grandson of auto pioneer Henry Ford, Edsel B. Ford II serves on the Board of Directors of the Ford Motor Company, at which he enjoyed a 25-year career. Active in a number of charitable and community organizations, he is particularly noted for his efforts to help in the revitalization of the city of Detroit.

harrisJ. Ira Harris

Chairman of J. I. Harris & Associates, a financial consulting firm in Palm Beach, Florida, he is active in a great variety of health care, education and civic organizations. A native of New York City, J. Ira Harris graduated from the University of Michigan in 1959.

nederlanderRobert E. Nederlander

A former U-M Regent, Robert Nederlander is President and CEO of Nederlander Co. LLC, one of the largest operators of live theater and music in the country. He is also a limited partner in the New York Yankees. He has raised millions of dollars for various social, health and educational organizations in the U.S.

parfetWilliam U. Parfet

William Parfet is Chairman and CEO of MPI Research, Inc., a drug safety and pharmaceutical development company based in Mattawan, Michigan. Previously, he was President of the Upjohn Company.  Active in educational and conservation organizations, he received an MBA in international finance from U-M.

prechterWaltraud E. Prechter

When her husband succumbed to bipolar disorder, Wally Prechter devoted herself to fighting this disease, establishing the Heinz C. Prechter Bipolar Research Fund at the University of Michigan in 2005.  She serves in leadership positions in numerous civic and charitable organizations, particularly in the areas of health and education.

rossStephen M. Ross

Stephen Ross is Chairman, CEO and Founder of Related Companies, the most prominent privately-owned real estate firm in the United States. Mr. Ross donates his time to various arts, health care and educational organizations. A gift to his alma mater led to the University of Michigan Business School being renamed in his honor.

tauberJoel D. Tauber

Joel Tauber owns a variety of companies both in the U.S. and Israel. He has been a major supporter of Jewish philanthropic organizations for more than 40 years. He received his B.A., M.B.A., and J.D. from the University of Michigan and an honorary Doctorate from Tel Aviv University.

taubman-robertRobert S. Taubman

Robert Taubman is Chairman, President and CEO of Taubman Centers, Inc., developer of elite shopping centers around the world. He is active in a wide variety of professional, civic and charitable organizations. He holds a B.S. degree in economics from Boston University. 

taubman-williamWilliam S. Taubman

Chief Operating Officer and a Director of Taubman Centers, Inc., William Taubman is responsible for development, operations and leasing for this worldwide developer of upscale shopping malls. A graduate of Brown University, he serves on the board of New Detroit and the Museum of Arts & Design in New York. 

wexnerAbigail S. Wexner

A lawyer and community leader, Abigail Wexner is active in philanthropic work both in Columbus, Ohio, and nationally, with a particular focus on children’s issues. She is married to Leslie H. Wexner, Chairman and Founder of Limited Brands. 

wilponFred Wilpon

Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of Sterling Equities, Fred Wilpon is also Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the New York Mets. A graduate of the University of Michigan, he has been actively involved as an advisor and donor to the school’s athletic program.


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