Cleversafe founder donates $7.6 million to IIT

CHICAGO (STMW) - The founder of technology company Cleversafe has donated $7.6 million to the Illinois Institute of Technology’s Computer Science Department, the school announced Thursday.

“Chris Gladwin’s generous gift to the Illinois Tech computer science will give us the opportunity to build on our reputation as the university of choice for talented computer science students and faculty from around the world,” Alan Cramb, IIT president, said in a statement.

Gladwin founded Cleversafe, a large data storage company based in Chicago, and in 2005 set up shop at IIT. The university was offering facilities for startups using advanced science, according to the statement. The company was recently sold to IBM.

Gladwin is a member of the IIT Board of Trustees.

“In the early days of Cleversafe, when it was located in the University Tech Park at Illinois Institute of Technology, I was so fortunate to be able to hire talented graduates from Illinois Tech’s computer science department’” he said in the statement. “They were instrumental in our success and so I wanted to give back to the institution that helped make Cleversafe the powerhouse it is today in data storage.”

Gladwin also challenged colleagues and other investors to match his donation to help “the continued growth of Chicago as a leading high-tech ecosystem.”