The gift will allow the university to provide roughly $1.75...

The gift will allow the university to provide roughly $1.75 million in scholarship funding annually to students in the Frank G. Zarb School of Business. Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.

A Hofstra alumnus originally from Garden City has bequeathed $35 million to the Hempstead university — the largest gift toward undergraduate education in the college's history — to support annual scholarships for business school students.

The gift, from the estate of Charles C. Frei, a Hofstra alumnus from the class of 1955, will allow the university to provide roughly $1.75 million in scholarship funding annually to undergraduate students in the Frank G. Zarb School of Business, according to Hofstra President Susan Poser.

Poser first announced the endowment during a May 2 speech at a dinner honoring Hofstra alumnus and donor David Mack.

At the time, Poser said the gift “will propel Hofstra University forward during these challenging times.”

Hofstra will endow Zarb scholarships in Frei’s name to support business school students in perpetuity, beginning with the 2025-2026 academic year, Poser said.

“This gift marks a transformative moment in Hofstra’s history and Mr. Frei’s legacy will shape the futures of countless students,” Poser said in a statement Friday.

Records show that Frei graduated from Garden City High School and started Cascade Capital Management, an investment firm based in Vancouver, Washington.

Additional details about Frei's career were not available and efforts to reach family members were not successful.

Frei, who died in October 2022, earned his Bachelor of Business Administration in marketing at Hofstra, where he was also a member of Gamma Rho Epsilon fraternity, the university said.

A Hofstra spokeswoman said the university continued to have a decades-long relationship with Frei and connected with him regularly. The school, officials said, was informed of his plan to bequeath money to support undergraduate scholarships prior to his death.

“Mr. Frei’s generous gift solidifies the Frank G. Zarb School of Business as a global leader in business education,” said Janet Lenaghan, dean of the school. “The Frei endowment will further empower our students with enhanced resources and opportunities, supporting their preparation as the next generation of business leaders and enabling them to pursue their academic and professional aspirations with greater ease and confidence.”

The $35 million endowment is the second largest gift in the university's history, behind only the $61 million from Donald and Barbara Zucker for the naming of Hofstra's School of Medicine.

Latest videos


Unlimited Digital AccessOnly 25¢for 5 months