To support multiple initiatives in women’s sports and the department as a whole, UCLA Athletics has received a $1.3 million gift from Mark Kalmansohn.
His donation comprises the establishment of The Mark Kalmansohn UCLA Assistant Softball Coach Endowment, the seed gift to establish the Women of Westwood Endowment, and extensive gifts to support UCLA individual sports and the Wooden Athletic Fund, the general fund for UCLA Athletics.
This commitment follows UCLA’s launch of Women of Westwood, celebrating the 50th anniversary of Title IX. Kalmansohn, a native of Los Angeles, is a former Assistant U.S. Attorney (Criminal Division – Central District of California) and later practiced entertainment and intellectual property law, including at Kalmansohn & Andersen, LLP. Bearing two degrees from UCLA, Kalmansohn received a B.A.in Political Science (Regents Scholarship, Summa Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa) and a J.D. (Moot Court Honor Program). Kalmansohn’s late mother also graduated from UCLA and attended UCSF Medical School on scholarship at the age of 19, helping to fuel his passion for women’s initiatives and overall philanthropic efforts. He also has created a UCSF scholarship for incoming female medical students.
In honor of this gift, the lead assistant softball coaching position will now be known as The Mark Kalmansohn UCLA Assistant Softball Coach.
“As a double UCLA alum and dedicated fan, I am honored to support the often unsung efforts and outstanding performances of UCLA student-athletes and coaches in an array of sports,” said Kalmansohn. “With the looming 50th anniversary of Title IX reminding us how much more remains to be done, I am especially pleased to assist UCLA women student-athletes both on and off the field. It also is a true privilege to separately support the women’s softball team with its superb coaches, student-athletes, and venerated tradition.”
With these gifts, Kalmansohn is encouraging all UCLA alumni, fans and friends of UCLA to support UCLA Athletics’ student-athletes and programs through the Women of Westwood philanthropic initiative. Women of Westwood was created to enhance educational and athletic-related resources at UCLA in support of the next generation of female leaders, and the Wooden Athletic Fund is committed to supporting all 25 programs at UCLA and nearly 700 student-athletes.
“Mark’s support is incredible, and we can’t thank him enough for all he is doing to support our program, particularly our women’s programs and student-athletes,” said Martin Jarmond, UCLA’s Alice and Nahum Lainer Family Director of Athletics. “When we launched Women of Westwood, it was our hope it would inspire members of the Bruin community to step up and support our commitment to empowering female student-athletes to achieve their goals. Mark answered our call, and we hope others will too.”
Women of Westwood aims to honor 50 years of comprehensive excellence from UCLA female student-athletes and coaches since the creation of Title IX in 1972. UCLA remains committed to empowering female student-athletes and coaches both past and present. The Women of Westwood fundraising initiative will allow for alumni, fans and friends of UCLA Athletics to share in that commitment and help build a sustainable future for the women’s athletics programs at UCLA.