"Phil Was Here" tags identify buildings and programs on campus in honor of Phil's Day on May 1, 2014. Phil’s Day is brought to you by the University of Iowa Foundation and the foundation’s Student Philanthropy Group. (Daily Iowan/Allison Orvis)

Guest opinion: Celebrating Phil’s Day

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The UI celebrates Phil’s Day, recognizing thousands of donors and those who benefit from their kindness.

It’s become an annual tradition — dozens of volunteers waking before dawn to dress the campus in black and gold — all to celebrate Phil.

Who is Phil? At Iowa, Phil stands for the thousands of people — alumni, fans, patients, friends — who make donations to help the University of Iowa and its people be remarkable. Phil also represents everyone who benefits from philanthropy.

We host our annual Phil’s Day to honor those who give and celebrate the impact donors have on our campus and our people. I hope you enjoy celebrating Phil today, and I also hope you will join us for the annual Life With Phil talk at 10:30 a.m in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber.

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Each year, we invite a friend of the university to campus to speak about philanthropy. This year’s featured guest is Mark Kaufman, the founder and president/CEO of Athletico Physical Therapy.

Mark graduated from the UI in 1986 and opened his first Athletico clinic in Chicago in 1991. Today, Athletico has grown to offer outpatient orthopedic rehabilitation in 11 states and more than 400 locations and is a physical therapy and athletics training partner to organizations at all levels — from high-school and college programs to professional sports teams and more.

Throughout his career, Mark has given back to his community and to the UI. Most notably, Mark helped sustain the UI athletics training program by creating the Danny T. Foster Professorship in Athletics Training Education in honor of his mentor and longtime UI faculty member.

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I’m delighted that Mark will be here to share his professional and philanthropic story. His dedication to his company and employees, to education, and to serving his patients and community shines through in all that he does.

Please join us today to celebrate Phil.

— Lynette Marshall

President and CEO

UI Center for Advancement

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