The Daniel Foundation of Alabama is supporting Southern Research’s economic development activities with a $225,000 grant, building on the longstanding ties between the two Birmingham organizations.
The gift will provide a boost to Southern Research programs and projects that raise the profile of Birmingham and Alabama, enhance their attractiveness for outside investment, and increase the state’s competitiveness in the global economy.
“The Daniel Foundation Trustees realize the unique role Southern Research plays in the economic fabric of our region,” said Charles W. Daniel, the foundation’s chairman. “Their research capacity reaches far beyond our region and introduces new drugs, technology, and methodology to the world.
“The board was pleased to support these efforts in honor of the 75th anniversary of Southern Research,” he added.
Southern Research’s bonds with the Daniel family stretch back to the early days of the research organization founded in Alabama in 1941.
Charles E. Daniel, a co-founder of the Daniel International Construction Co., served on Southern Research’s board from 1946 to 1959. His brother, R. Hugh Daniel, another co-founder of the family firm, was a board member between 1964 and 1970.
The Daniel construction firm erected several buildings on Southern Research’s campus on Birmingham’s Southside. The Daniel Laboratory on the downtown campus was dedicated to Charles E. Daniel in 1965 with a plaque that called him a “man of vision.”
Since 1978, the Daniel Foundation has supported Southern Research with donations approaching $1.2 million, counting the new gift. The funding has supported the Cancer Cause and Prevention Laboratory, the Engineering Research Center, and Southern Research’s capital needs.
“Southern Research has a long history of positively influencing economic development in our region, and the Daniel Foundation of Alabama has been a valuable partner in our scientific and engineering endeavors for decades,” said Art Tipton, Ph.D., president and CEO.
“The foundation’s latest gift will help power the work of our researchers, who are continuously pursuing leads and making discoveries that add vitality to the region’s economy and enrich lives in Alabama and beyond,” he added.
Southern Research contributes to Alabama’s strategic economic development growth effort through high-level research, partnerships, talent recruitment, and the commercialization of therapies and technologies.
Its scientists and engineers perform highly skilled technical work that attracts substantial government and commercial research funding from around the world. Agencies within the National Institutes of Health, NASA, and private corporations have all been important sponsors of work conducted at Southern Research.
The organization’s activities with economic development potential include a comprehensive drug discovery program, research into infectious diseases such as the Zika virus, new technology initiatives within the engineering division, exploration of renewable energy storage technologies, and the development of medical devices.
The Daniel Foundation of Alabama is an active member of the state’s philanthropic community, supporting educational, health, humanitarian and cultural activities in Birmingham and throughout Alabama. The foundation has also supported organizations with an economic development and entrepreneurship focus.