Submitted on Wednesday, 4/11/2012, at 12:02 PM

April 11, 2012
For immediate release

Contact: Kristen Spargo
Director of Advancement Communications

Amherst College Honors Lipton Family for their Generosity

AMHERST, Mass. — Amherst College will recognize the Lipton family for a multigenerational gift by renaming a 94-year-old dormitory and former fraternity house. A May 18 dedication ceremony will make the official transformation from “Hamilton House” (formerly Chi Phi) to “Lipton House.”

Sally Lipton

The principal benefactors are Sally Lipton of Palm Beach, Fla., and Baltimore, Md., and Jane and Richard Lipton of Kenilworth, Ill. Richard is a 1974 graduate of Amherst College, and he and Jane are the parents of a 2008 graduate, Anne Lipton, and a current senior, Tricia Lipton. The dedication ceremony will occur during Commencement Weekend and in conjunction with Tricia’s graduation. Richard will serve as the honorary marshal.

“Amherst thrives today because of the remarkable dedication and generosity of the parents, alumni and friends of this nearly 200-year-old institution,” said President Biddy Martin. “Through their generous gift, the Lipton family is ensuring the vitality of Amherst for years to come.”

The college renamed the Greek-letter houses in 1984. Hamilton House is among the oldest of Amherst’s 13 former fraternity houses. A history major, Richard joined Chi Phi as a freshman and lived there for two years.

“My mother and I believe strongly in charitable giving,” said Richard. “We decided that Amherst was a logical choice given its important role in our family’s life."

The significant donation honors the memory of Sanford Lipton, Sally’s husband and Richard’s father.

Richard ’74 and Jane Lipton

“My father passed away not long after I graduated from Amherst, and my mother and I wanted to do something to remember him,” said Richard. “Though he started college in 1940, he left after two years to serve in World War II and never had the opportunity to return. My father would have been proud of his children and grandchildren and our commitment to higher education.”

About the Building

Built in 1918, Hamilton House is among the oldest of the former fraternity houses at Amherst. In 2006-2007, Hamilton underwent an extensive renovation, the first major restoration in 88 years except for repairing damages from a fire in the 1980s. Architects maintained the original aesthetics of the building, extending great care to preserve the interior woodwork and original grand staircase, lounge and study spaces. Also, the work added a new all-campus social space at the lower level, which provides for social and performance gatherings capable of accommodating a large number of students.

About the Lipton Family

Sanford and Sally Lipton married in 1946 and settled in Youngstown, Ohio, where they raised their two children, Lynne and Richard. Sanford was a beer and wine distributor as well as an avid golfer. After the death of her husband, Sally moved from Youngstown and now divides her time between Palm Beach and Baltimore.

After graduating from Amherst, Richard Lipton attended the University of Chicago Law School and started his legal career. He is a partner at Baker & McKenzie LLP, where he specializes in the federal taxation of partnerships and real estate. He also shares his father’s love of golf and is a past chair of the American Bar Association Section of Taxation. Jane has dedicated her time to raising the couple’s four children as well as her passion for needlepoint. She also has served on several nonprofit boards in their community. 

Anne is currently pursuing a PhD in biomedical research at the University of Pittsburgh while Tricia, a history major, will pursue a master’s degree in historic preservation at the University of Edinburgh next year. In addition to their two daughters, Jane and Richard have two sons, Thomas, a teacher in Gallup, New Mexico, and Martin, a group event specialist with a professional hockey team in Cleveland, Ohio.