Carnegie Mellon University
In Memoriam: Henry Posner Jr.

In Memoriam: Henry Posner Jr.

Henry Posner Jr., a longtime friend of Carnegie Mellon University and Lifetime Emeritus Trustee, passed away on March 23, 2011, at the age of 92.

Mr. Posner was a quietly influential Pittsburgh entrepreneur, chairman of The Hawthorne Group, former CEO of Pittsburgh Outdoor Advertising, and scientist with the Manhattan Project. He amassed a fortune from various business ventures in his lifetime, and gave most of it away to support education, health care, the welfare of Jews in the former Soviet Union and other philanthropy.

In 1978, Helen and Henry Posner Jr. deeded his parents’ personal library of rare books and artifacts to the University Libraries’ care. In 2004, they built Posner Center to provide the ideal environment in which to secure and display the collection. The LEED-certified facility not only provides museum-quality storage and exhibit space, but also houses the Carnegie Mellon trustees’ board room and serves the university as a premier meeting venue.

Simultaneously with construction of Posner Center, the family launched a foundation to promote awareness and use of the Posner collection for education and scholarship at the university. The Posner Fine Arts Foundation funds two internships per year for Carnegie Mellon students. Student interns work directly with collection materials and create major exhibits on topics of their choice.

Carnegie Mellon University is one of the institutions that the Posner family named to accept gifts in Mr. Posner’s memory. We will use the memorial contributions to enhance projects that were initiated by Mr. and Mrs. Posner and supported by their generosity.

Indicate Friends of the Library and Additional Comments: Posner.

Banner photos
from left:
Helen Posner, Anne Skoog, Ida Posner (Mrs. Henry Posner Sr.) and Henry Posner Jr. in 1978
Helen and Henry Posner Jr. at Posner Center opening in 2004
Posner Center, in granite
"The Hare of the Moon," ivory netsuke from Posner Collection