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Annual Fund

Giving Societies

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Cornerstone Buy Back Opportunity 

We are delighted to be able to provide a buy back opportunity for Cornerstone members who may have missed giving in Fiscal Year 2020 due to COVID-19 and the economic, personal strains of the pandemic. This first time and only time Cornerstone buy back opportunity is available from July 1, 2020 thru December 31, 2020. This will be offered to Annual Fund donors who gave in Fiscal Year 2019 (from July 1, 2018 thru June 30, 2019), but did not give in Fiscal Year 2020 (from July 1, 2019 thru June 30, 2020): if they give between July 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020 to any Annual Fund at Duke, they will receive giving credit for Fiscal Year 2020 and Fiscal Year 2021.  

Please click here to renew your gift now! 

For questions, please contact Carolyn Miller at or 919-684-0773.

Cornerstone Society

The Annual Fund is essential to propelling Duke forward, and its most loyal donors are a pivotal part of that. In order to highlight and recognize the Annual Fund’s most loyal donors, we have the Cornerstone Society. This past year, we are proud to say that there were more than 31,000 members of the Cornerstone Society. Gifts from members of the Cornerstone Society represented 57% of the overall total of Annual Fund donors.

Donors who have supported the Annual Fund at any amount for five or more consecutive years are recognized as members. Undergraduates who have supported the Annual Fund every year since graduation (or since our computerized records began) are further recognized as lifetime donors. Membership in the Cornerstone Society is renewable annually. Our fiscal year is from July 1 through June 30. 

Cornerstone Society members are also acknowledged in respective donor honor rolls, and are invited to various events throughout the year. 

Leadership Giving Societies

Last year, gifts from leadership gift society members represented more than 85% of the Annual Fund’s cash total. These critical funds enabled the University to not only meet pressing needs in the classroom and across campus, but additionally to innovate and create new academic opportunities that are essential for Duke to continue to excel!

Impact of Leadership Giving 

  • $1,000 can send a student to a professional conference in their field to present research, helping new scholars launch their careers and cultivate valuable networks
  • $5,000 can support a summer internship overseas for a student interested in working for nonprofits or governmental organizations
  • $10,000 can support a student entrepreneur in the Student Founders Program who is delivering extraordinary impact by pursuing startup ventures
  • $25,000 could enable a school to impact the Durham community, such as hiring a student fellow in the Duke Law Civil Justice Clinic  
  • $60,000 can provide financial aid to fully fund tuition for one undergraduate who may not otherwise be able to attend Duke

Duke has a number of leadership giving societies so that our most generous donors are recognized for their philanthropy and generosity. Membership is based on unrestricted gifts made or facilitated by an individual and their spouse. Corporate matching gifts count toward membership if received or verified within the same fiscal year the gift was made.

Membership is renewable annually, and Duke's fiscal year is from July 1 through June 30. 

The Duke Annual Fund Leadership Giving Societies recognize all donors to the Duke Annual Fund. In addition, particular schools and units distinguish donors at various giving levels within the respective school or unit. 

Duke Annual Fund Leadership Giving Societies

Society Gift Level
President's Society
  • Executive Cabinet: $100,000+
  • Cabinet Member: $50,000 - $99,999
  • Executive Council: $25,000 - $49,999
  • Council: $10,000 - $24,999
Washington Duke Society
  • Partner: $5,000 - $9,999
  • Fellow: $2,500 - $4,999
  • Member: $1,000 - $2,499
Young Alumni Leadership Society
  • $500 - $999 for Trinity, Pratt undergraduates 5-9 years out
  • $250 - $999 for Trinity, Pratt undergraduates 1-4 years out
Student Leadership Society
  • $100+ for current Trinity, Pratt undergraduate students

Benefits of Membership

  • Invitations to special leadership events
  • Donor may opt in to receive special edition 12-month wall calendar
  • Recognition in appropriate honor rolls (please note that the criteria for inclusion in a particular honor roll varies by school and unit; not all schools and units produce donor honor rolls)
  • For personal assistance with Duke matters or information about gift clubs, please contact:
  • President’s Society members who give $10,000 or more are offered a book/e-book of their choice from a selection of Duke titles
  • Young Alumni Leadership donors may choose to receive an e-book from a Duke author (selection will change each year)
  • President’s Society members who give under $100,000 will receive a five percent discount to the Duke Executive Health Program, and those who give above $100,000 will receive a 10 percent discount. For more information about the program, please visit or call 919-660-6606 to sign up.

If you have questions or would like additional information about joining any of our gift clubs, please contact Carolyn Miller, Assistant Director of Stewardship in the Annual Fund, at or 919-684-0773. 

Recognizing Giving by School/Unit

Six of Duke's schools, along with the Nasher Museum of Art and the Sarah P. Duke Gardens, have established their own giving societies to further recognize annual supporters. Follow the links below to each school or unit's website for further information about these giving societies and the benefits of membership.


Divinity School
Divinity Benefactor $25,000+
Divinity Patron $10,000 - $24,999
Divinity Sponsor $5,000 - $9,999
Divinity Fellow $2,500 - $4,999
York Society $1,000 - $2,499
Dean's Club $500 - $999
1926 Club $250 - $499
Century Club $100 - $249

Fuqua School of Business
Rex D. Adams Society
Cumulative Commitments to Fuqua
Thomas F. Keller Leadership Donor Society $1,000+

Nicholas School of the Environment
Blue Sky Level  $25,000+
Blue Sky Vanguard Level  $10,000 - $24,999
Summit Society Level  $1,000 - $9,999

School of Nursing
The Bessie Baker Society honors the generosity of individuals who have made an annual fund gift of $1,000 or more ($500 for recent nursing school graduates) to the Duke University School of Nursing.
Bessie baker society   
Innovators Society  $25,000
Leadership Society  $10,000
Dean's Circle  $5,000
Fellow $2,500
Member  $1,000
Member (within five years of graduation; first degree only) $500 

School of Law
The School of Law's giving societies recognize all annual giving to the school, not only unrestricted gifts to the school's annual fund.
Barrister Donor Society*
The Latty Circle $100,000+
The Everett Circle $50,000 - $99,999
The Shimm Circle $25,000 - $49,999
The Dean's Circle $10,000 - $24,999
Partner $5,000 - $9,999
Member $2,500 - $4,999
* Recent graduates of 1-5 years, judges, educators, and those who work for the government or in public service are members at $1,000 annually.

School of Medicine
Davison Club
Innovators Society $25,000+
Leadership Society $10,000 - $24,999
Dean's Circle $5,000 - $9,999
Davison Fellow $2,500 - $4,999
Family Member $1,500 - $2,499
Member $1,000 - $1,499
Recent Graduate Member (5-9 years since graduation)  $500 - $999

Recent Graduate Member (1-4 years since graduation) 


$250 - $999




Other Annual Giving

Nasher Museum of Art
Brummer Society
Director's Circle  $10,000+
Gold $5,000 - $9,999
Silver $2,500 - $4,999
Bronze $1,500 - $2,499
Other Supporting Member Categories
Benefactor $1,000 - $1,499
Sustainer $500 - $999
Patron $250 - $499
Sponsor $120 - $249

Sarah P. Duke Gardens
Champion  $20,000+
Leader  $10,000
Gold Patron  $5,000
Silver Patron  $2,500
Bronze Patron  $1,000
other supporting member categories  
Sustaining Gardens Partner


Contributing Gardens Partner $500
Supporting Gardens Partner  $250
Family Level Member  $100
Dual Level Member  $75
Individual Member  $50
Student  $25



We’re more than a campus in Durham; we are each of you. Only through your support can we continue to save lives, discover treatments and cures, reinvent education, and anchor communities around the world. Our fiscal year ends on June 30 – please make your gift today.