Yale University

In Memoriam

Ned Evans

Ned Evans
1964 graduation

Eleven days after the announcement of Ned Evans' $50M gift to the Yale School of Management, Ned passed away from leukemia. Below are three articles which will help us remember him.

Obituary for Ned Evans

Associated Press
December 31, 2010

NEW YORK — Edward P. Evans, one of thoroughbred racing's leading owners and breeders, has died after a brief illness. He was 68.

Evans died Friday night at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan, his personal secretary Catherine Moraetis said Saturday. She said the cause of death was acute myeloid leukemia.

Evans owned Spring Hill Farm in Casanova, Va., and his horses won more than 100 stakes races during his 30-plus years as an owner. Funeral services will be private, and Evans will be buried at his farm, Moraetis said.

Quality Road was among Evans' best horses, earning more than $2.2 million with victories that included the Woodward Stakes and the Metropolitan Handicap in 2010. Other horses bred by Evans included 2005 Horse of the Year Saint Liam, Gygistar and Tap Dance.

"He was one of the last remaining old-style owners and breeders, and a very successful one at that," said racing manager Chris Baker, who worked for Evans the past 10 years. "It's a tremendous loss for all of us who worked for him and for the sport as well. We will miss the man first, the sportsman second."

Evans, a former chairman of publisher MacMillan Inc., was the son of Thomas Mellon Evans, also a breeder-owner whose Buckland Farm produced 1981 Kentucky Derby winner Pleasant Colony.

Evans recently donated $50 million to his alma mater, Yale University, to help with construction of a new campus for its school of management.

"I'd say he considered himself a businessman first, a philanthropist second and then a horseman," Moraetis said.

In 2010, Evans ranked seventh among owners in North America with $3.6 million in purse earnings. Among his other recent winners were Cat Moves, Malibu Prayer and A Little Warm.

Quality Road was the standout. The colt won or placed in 12 of 13 career starts, and will stand at stud this year at Lane's End Farm near Versailles, Ky. Quality Road won the Fountain of Youth Stakes and the Florida Derby as a 3-year-old, and was among the Kentucky Derby favorites before being sidelined with hoof issues. He returned as a 4-year-old to win the Woodward and Met Mile.

"Edward Evans was one of the most prominent horsemen on the New York circuit and you would be hard pressed to find someone more passionate about horses and horse racing," New York Racing Association president Charles Hayward said. "It is not going to be the same without his presence at the NYRA tracks, and he will be sorely missed throughout the industry."

Evans, born in Pittsburgh, bought his 3,000 acre Virginia farm in 1969, and was the state's breeder of the year six times and chosen national breeder of the year by the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association in 2009.

"The industry has lost an icon," Tony Dutrow, who trains A Little Warm, said on the Thoroughbred Times' website. "He was one of the greatest American breeders, and this is a very sad day to start off the year."


Edward P. Evans, businessman and top Va. horse breeder, dies at 68

Washington Post
January 5, 2011

Edward P. Evans, 68, a renowned Virginia thoroughbred breeder and owner whose Fauquier County farm produced Saint Liam, the 2005 horse of the year, and Quality Road, a stakes winner of more than $2.2 million, died Dec. 31 at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. His family said he had acute myeloid leukemia.

Mr. Evans was the middle son of Thomas Mellon Evans, a New York financier who was among the first practitioners of hostile corporate takeovers in the 1950s and 1960s. Mr. Evans's father, a cousin of philanthropist Paul Mellon, was a prominent thoroughbred owner whose horse Pleasant Colony won the 1981 Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes.

Throughout Mr. Evans's decades-long career in thoroughbred racing, he bred more than 100 stakes-winning horses. He was the Virginia thoroughbred breeder of the year nine times in the past 11 years and was national breeder of the year in 2009.

Mr. Evans's roots in Virginia thoroughbred breeding date to 1969, when he bought the first parcel of land in Casanova that would become his 2,800-acre farm.

At the time of his death, Mr. Evans owned about 250 horses, including 80 broodmares and 35 thoroughbreds in training.

Among his breeding successes were Minstrella, the 2-year-old filly of the year in Ireland in 1986, and several winners of more than $1 million, including Raging Fever, Summer Colony, and Gygistar.

Mr. Evans bred, but did not keep to race, Saint Liam, who won the Breeders' Cup Classic, the Donn Handicap and the Woodward Stakes, reaping more than $4 million in purses; and Yonaguska, one of the top American thoroughbred sires.

Mr. Evans's greatest success came with Quality Road, a handsome bay horse known for his astonishing speed. On three separate occasions, Quality Road set new track records, including a 1:47.49 time covering 1 1/8 miles at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla.

Quality Road won eight times in 13 starts and finished in the money in all but one of his races. During his 3-year-old campaign in 2009, he won the Florida Derby and Fountain of Youth Stakes, making him a favorite for that year's Kentucky Derby. Hoof problems, however, kept Quality Road out of the Triple Crown series.

As a 4-year-old, he won the Donn Handicap, Metropolitan Handicap and Woodward Stakes. This year, Quality Road will begin his first year as a breeding stallion at Lane's End Farm in Versailles, Ky.

With Quality Road's steady success, Mr. Evans's stock as a knowledgeable and patient thoroughbred owner continued to grow. In 2010, he was ranked seventh among North American thoroughbred owners, with $3.6 million in purses.

Edward Parker Evans was born Jan. 31, 1942, in Pittsburgh. He is survived by two brothers.

Mr. Evans was a 1960 graduate of the private Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass., and graduated from Yale University in 1964.

After receiving a master's degree in business from Harvard University in 1967, Mr. Evans spent much of his early career working for his father, who acquired a reputation as a ruthless businessman.

By his mid-30s, Mr. Evans was chairman and chief executive of H. K. Porter, one of his father's holding companies.

In the late 1980s, under Mr. Evans's leadership, H. K. Porter acquired about 15 percent of MacMillan, a New York publishing company. With his sizable investment in the ailing company, he took control of MacMillan.

Not long after the deal had taken place, Mr. Evans's father decided to sell H.K. Porter's stake in the publishing company back to MacMillan.

In effect, Mr. Evans was forced to buy back H. K. Porter's stock to maintain control of MacMillan, then was fired as H. K. Porter's chairman and chief executive by his own father.

In November of 1988, MacMillan was sold to Maxwell Communications for $2.8 billion, a deal that left Mr. Evans very wealthy. Since 1989, Mr. Evans spent his time monitoring his investments and managing his thoroughbred interests.

In December, Mr. Evans gave Yale University's School of Management $50 million, the largest gift in its history. For his generosity, a School of Management building will be named in his honor.

In the 1960s, Virginia was one of the top thoroughbred-producing states in the nation. For the past several decades, however, the state has suffered, with most thoroughbred breeding farms operating in Kentucky. Mr. Evans, several racing experts have said, was the last top breeder of his caliber based in Virginia.

"It is disappointing to me," Mr. Evans told The Washington Post in 2009 about the statewide decline of thoroughbred farms. "They have just about disappeared in Virginia."


Ned Evans dies after making gift to SOM

Yale Daily News
Jan. 10, 2011

Ned Evans '64, who pledged a $50 million gift to the Yale School of Management over the winter recess, died of acute myeloid leukemia Dec. 31 — less than two weeks after making the largest gift in the school's 35-year history.

Yale sought a donor to name the school's new campus since at least September, when SOM Dean Sharon Oster said Yale was asking about $100 million for naming rights. In honor of Evans' Dec. 20 gift, the new SOM building will be named Edward P. Evans Hall.

Evans, who was 68, was a private investor and former CEO of the publishing house Macmillan. The gift was part of Evans' plans for his estate, University President Richard Levin said in a Sunday interview.

"[Evans] was very ill and in decline when he decided to make the contribution," Levin said. "He was making a gift while he still had time to do so."

Evans' gift and a $10 million donation from Wilbur L. Ross '59 announced in early November make it possible for the University to continue construction without borrowing funds, University President Richard Levin said in a Dec. 20 e-mail. In September, Oster told the News that SOM might need to borrow as much as $65 million to finance the new campus.

Evans had myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a form of bone marrow failure disease, said Catherine Moraetis, Evans' personal secretary. Individuals diagnosed with MDS are at significant risk for acute myeloid leukemia. Moraetis said Evans' MDS was "very aggressive" and advanced to acute myeloid leukemia, but declined to say when Evans was diagnosed with either disease.

Moraetis described Evans as a "very private man" and said he was stoic throughout his illness. Even before his diagnosis, Evans started to plan his estate, she said, adding that he never married and had no children.

Toward the end of his career, Evans was widely known as a successful owner and breeder of thoroughbred racing horses, but Moraetis described him as a "quintessential businessman." In deciding how to direct his gift to Yale, she said, SOM was a "natural fit" for Evans' donation.

"It was something that he had been working on and the diagnosis if anything just accelerated his decision-making," Moraetis said.

Although Evans is not an alumnus of SOM, Yale Vice President for Development Inge Reichenbach said in a Dec. 20 e-mail that alumni donors often give to areas of the University beyond their student affiliations. At the time, Reichenbach said Evans' donation had prompted other potential donors to consider giving to SOM. In an interview with the News Sunday, Reichenbach said the University would have hoped to "thank [Evans] with a celebration" and allow him to see his name on the finished building. Despite this, Moraetis said the timing was right for Evans' donation, adding that he received several letters expressing gratitude from members of the Yale community before he died.

The 4.25-acre campus, which was designed by the architectural firm Foster + Partners, will be located on Whitney Avenue. It is planned to open in the fall of 2013.