The Segal Visitors Center, along the Lake Michigan shore at the southeast corner of campus, opened in October. (Photo by Steve Anzaldi)

Gordon '60 and Carole Segal '60, co-founders of Crate & Barrel and longtime supporters of Northwestern, have committed approximately $10 million to the University through a planned gift.

Northwestern has recognized the Segals’ generosity by naming the University’s new visitors center the Segal Visitors Center. Northwestern opened the state-of-the-art, 170,000-square-foot facility this fall for prospective students and their families.

“We are extremely appreciative of this visionary gift and of Gordon and Carole’s continuing support of Northwestern, both financially and through their service,” Northwestern President Morton Schapiro said. “This generous planned gift will extend their legacy at the University in a way that will benefit the Northwestern community for many years to come.”

Situated on the southeast corner of the Evanston campus at 1841 Sheridan Road, the Segal Visitors Center features broad views of Lake Michigan and the University’s new Sailing Center. Designed by Chicago architectural firm Perkins+Will, the facility includes an auditorium with approximately 160 seats, meeting rooms, offices for admission staff, waiting areas for visitors and an indoor parking structure for more than 400 cars. The new building is home to the Office of Undergraduate Admission and the Parking Services Office.

The Segals’ gift will benefit several areas of the University, including the Judd A. and Marjorie Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, the Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music, the Kellogg School of Management, University Library, the President’s Fund, the Segal Design Institute and student scholarships.


Gordon Segal, who retired as CEO of Crate & Barrel in 2008, is a life member of the Northwestern University Board of Trustees and chair of the Educational Properties Committee. He received a bachelor’s degree in business from Northwestern in 1960. Carole Browe Segal graduated from Northwestern in 1960 with a bachelor’s degree in English. In addition to co-founding Crate & Barrel, Carole is also founder and former CEO of Foodstuffs Inc. She is on the Board of Visitors of Weinberg, is past president of the Northwestern Women’s Board and received the Alumni Medal in 2008. The couple met at Northwestern and co-founded Crate & Barrel in 1962.

In his role as chair of the Educational Properties Committee, Gordon Segal has helped lead the University in its planning of new buildings critical to keeping the University competitive. These include the new Music and Communication Building, opening in 2015; Kellogg’s new global hub, under construction on the Evanston lakefront; and the new Biomedical Research Building, to be built on the Chicago campus.

Gordon and Carole Segal co-chaired their 50th reunion at Northwestern in 2010, and Carole has been a member of the Northwestern University Women’s Board since 1981.

The Segals were honored last month as the 2014 Entrepreneurial Champions by 1871, Chicago’s entrepreneurial hub for digital startups.

Gordon and Carole Segal have given annually to Northwestern since 1986. In 2007, they made a significant gift to establish the Segal Design Institute at the McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science and the Kellogg School of Management. Other gifts have supported various parts of the University, including Kellogg, University Library, Weinberg College and athletics.

The Segals’ most recent gift will count toward We Will. The Campaign for Northwestern, a $3.75 billion University-wide fundraising effort announced in March. The money raised will help realize the transformational vision set forth in Northwestern’s strategic plan and solidify the University’s position among the world’s leading research universities. More information on We Will. The Campaign for Northwestern, as well as planned giving vehicles, is available at

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