Baumers make gift to Notre Dame for new residence hall

Author: Dennis Brown

Baumer Hall rendering

University of Notre Dame alumnus John Baumer and his wife, Mollie, have made a $20 million gift to his alma mater for the construction of Baumer Hall, a men’s residence hall that will open in August.

“Residential life is a distinctive hallmark of a Notre Dame undergraduate education, central to our mission to educate both minds and hearts,” said Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., the University’s president. “We could not be more proud that generations of students will call Baumer Hall home, and we are deeply grateful to John and Mollie for their extraordinary generosity.”

Erin Hoffmann Harding, vice president for student affairs, added: “The Baumer family’s commitment to this new facility supports our ability to form the communities our students call home and for that, we are extremely thankful.

“Baumer Hall will help the University meet the need of housing undergraduate students through at least their junior year, as we continue to sustain and enhance the unique character of residential life for all students.”

John Baumer is a native of South Bend, where his father, Fred Baumer, was employed as comptroller at Notre Dame for 21 years. John earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from Notre Dame and a master of business administration degree from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. He is a senior partner at Leonard Green & Partners of Los Angeles, one of the nation’s leading private equity firms. Baumer has served on numerous corporate and nonprofit boards, including Rite Aid Corp., Petco Animal Supplies, FTD Group and Equinox Fitness. He is a member of Notre Dame’s Campaign Cabinet and Wall Street Committee.

Mollie Baumer is a graduate of Saint Mary’s College, where she was a varsity soccer player. She serves on Notre Dame’s Advisory Council for the Student-Athlete. The Baumers reside in Manhattan Beach, California, and have three children. They made a gift in 2015 to endow the Notre Dame men’s head lacrosse coaching position and are members of the University’s President’s Circle.

“This University has been part of our family story for three generations,” John Baumer said. “The residence hall experience I had at Notre Dame was the backdrop for the best and most lasting friendships and memories I have made. Sharing every aspect of life with your residence hall community creates a foundation of friendship and support you will build on for the rest of your life. I am deeply grateful for my time in Zahm Hall, and we as a family are delighted that we have the opportunity, through Baumer Hall, to ensure this tradition remains strong and meaningful for future generations.”

Baumer Hall is located on the south side of the Notre Dame campus, adjacent to Ryan and Keough Halls. The four-story, 78,000-square-foot structure will house 251 men and feature a two-story lounge, reading room, study rooms, community kitchen, chapel, laundry, vending, storage, exercise room and space for food sales on the lower level.