The Center for Investigative Reporting joins our fellow journalists in mourning David Logan, a leading supporter of nonprofit investigative reporting. He died in Chicago, his hometown, on January 22. He was 93.
Mr. Logan was a major donor to CIR through the private foundation he established, the Reva and David Logan Foundation. In 2005, with his son Jon, now president of the foundation, he made the cornerstone gift to endow CIR’s Future Fund, which provides annual support. The foundation has continued to support CIR with additional grants over the years. Jon Logan is a longtime member of CIR’s Board of Directors and this past December ended a three-year term as Board Chair.
Robert J. Rosenthal, Executive Director of CIR, said, “David Logan and his family have been unique in their support for investigative reporting. Mr. Logan understood the role investigative reporting has in protecting democracy. His vision and his philanthropy have been crucial to the success and survival of CIR. Mr. Logan was a no-nonsense, direct and powerful personality with a wonderful intellectual curiosity. His philanthropy reflected that. His family’s gifts created impacts and a legacy we are proud to be associated with.”
David Logan is survived by his wife, Reva, three sons, nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. In Mr. Logan’s
Associated Press obituary, his son Daniel described his father: “He was a real fireball. He was energized by his anger that things in the world weren't as good as he wanted them to be.”
Mr. Logan was a self-made man who began his career in law—he received his law degree from the University of Chicago—and became an investor. His interests spanned journalism, photography, jazz, illustrated books, physical rehabilitation, poverty alleviation, education and philanthropy. Other journalism-related recipients of his generosity include the University of California Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, where he endowed a chair in investigative journalism, currently occupied by Lowell Bergman—one of the three founders of CIR thirty-four years ago. The Logan Foundation also has supported PBS’s FRONTLINE documentary series and created the annual Logan Symposium, a major international conference for investigative reporters and students held each spring at UC Berkeley.
He amassed a world-renowned collection of photography and illustrated books, encompassing virtually every artistic movement from 1870 to this day. Most of the collection is contained with the Reva and David Logan Collection of Illustrated Books at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco.
He noted the rise of writing on the subject of photography and created the Logan Grants at the Photographic Resource Center; forty-five writers have benefited from his largesse. He helped fund Ken Burns’ Jazz documentary and Duke University’s Jazz Loft Project. He established the Reva and David Logan Distinguished Chair in Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation at the top-ranked Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.
The Logan Foundation’s philosophy is expressed through a quotation that appears below its name on the foundation’s website: “From those to whom much has been given, much is expected” (attributed to Mary Gates). To help spur future generations of public servants, Mr. Logan established an annual award program at the RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service at the University of Texas at Austin. Graduate students develop entrepreneurial plans to address difficult social problems; the winner receives significant start-up funds.
As we offer condolences to Mr. Logan’s family, we also express our deep appreciation for his commitment to investigative reporting and other causes. He made a profound impact during his lifetime, and his generosity will continue to bear fruit for generations.