National champions, Olympic gold medalists, All-Americans and a former NU Chairman of the Board comprise stellar class
Patrick G. Ryan is a 1959 Northwestern graduate. He received his undergraduate degree from what was then called the School of Business and now is named the Kellogg School of Management.
Along with his wife, Shirley Welsh Ryan, who is a 1961 Northwestern graduate, Pat Ryan has been an extraordinary donor to Northwestern for many years, providing leadership and support for academic programs, scholarships, the construction of Northwestern's Nanotechnology Center, support for Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine and renovation of Northwestern's football and basketball stadiums. They recently made the lead gift for a new multi-use athletics and recreational facility that will be located next to the shore of Lake Michigan at the north end of Northwestern's Evanston campus. In honor of their gift, the facility will be named the Ryan Fieldhouse.
An earlier major gift from the Ryans created scholarships for low-income students to attend Northwestern without taking out any student loans, which has enabled Northwestern to attract high-achieving low-income students with exceptional leadership potential. That gift also supported graduate fellowships and facilities on both the Evanston and Chicago campuses, as well as providing athletic scholarships for undergraduate students.
Pat Ryan is distinguished as one of Chicago's most successful entrepreneurs and prominent civic leaders. He founded and served for 41 years as CEO of Aon Corporation, the leading global provider of risk management, insurance and reinsurance brokerage. At the time of his retirement, Aon had $8 billion in annual revenue with more than 500 offices in 120 countries. He also founded Ryan Specialty Group where he currently serves as CEO.
A member and immediate past chairman of Northwestern University's Board of Trustees,
Pat Ryan is a member of the International Insurance Hall of Fame. In 2008, Mr. Ryan
was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the nation's oldest and most prestigious honor society, reflecting his many contributions to higher education. Mr. Ryan led Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics.