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Groundbreaking for Barbara Walters Centers

From left: Mark Goodman, chair of the college’s board of trustees; Cristle Collins Judd; Kendal Flowerdew, student in the class of 2019; Mike Spano; Deputy Westchester County Executive Ken Jenkins; Yonkers Councilman Michael Sabatino behind Jenkins; Yonkers Commissioner of Planning and Development Wilson Kimball; and Chuck Lesnick, former Yonkers city council president who represented Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Photo by Dana Maxon.

Sarah Lawrence College on Jan. 18 broke ground for the construction of a $35 million campus center, named in honor of college alumna Barbara Walters. The noted journalist and television personality donated the lead gift of $15 million for the 34,800-square-foot center. It will include the Barbara Walters Gallery for exhibitions of fine art and the Barbara Walters Archives and Reading Room. 

College President Cristle Collins Judd said, “This center will create a civic space and a cultural anchor at a time when we, as a society, face a pressing need for opportunities to foster open conversation, to foster listening, to create and forge bonds of community.”

Walters sent a message saying, in part, “This is a very exciting time not just for the college but for the community. We can look ahead to a place of study, contemplation and socializing that will be a focus that the college has not had before.”

Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano said, “Throughout her career, Barbara Walters engaged her audiences with in-depth and insightful interviews. She connected us. This building…will serve as a center for engagement and connect our communities. It will be a place where people can gather, unite, and make a difference.” 

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