Andre B. Lacy, Butler business school namesake, dies at 78

Andre B. Lacy at a ceremony in April announcing his donation and the college’s namesake. Collegian file photo.


Andre B. Lacy, namesake of the business school at Butler University, died in a motorcycle crash in Africa on Thursday, according to the Indianapolis Star.

The Star reports that Lacy was in Botswana on a private tour when his motorcycle crashed. Details of the event are unknown at the time.

Lacy, 78, donated $25 million to the university this past April, and the university named the business school in his honor: the Andre B. Lacy School of Business.

Stephen Standifird, dean of the Lacy School of Business, sent the following email to students within the business school.

“It is with great sorrow that I share with you that Andre Lacy was killed in a motorcycle accident earlier today. There will be a university wide note coming out from Jim Danko later today. I wanted you all to be made aware of this incredibly tragic news prior to the university announcement.

Andre and Julia Lacy will be remembered in perpetuity for their transformational gift to name the Lacy School of Business. For those of us that have had the good fortune of working with Andre as Senior Advisor for the school, he will be remembered as someone who cared deeply for the success of the school and of our students.

Andre had become a central figure in the Lacy School of Business. I have personally benefited immensely from his insights. That said, the most meaningful moments for me have been his one-on-one conversations with our students. He had the unique capability of connecting with our students in the most meaningful of ways. He was more than a Senior Advisor; he was a friend, colleague, and inspirational leader for many of us. He will be deeply missed by many.” 

Jim Danko, president of Butler University, said in a statement that it was an honor to work with Lacy.

“Their gift went far beyond a monetary commitment; in sharing their family name with Butler, Andre and Julia Lacy created a legacy for young businesspeople in the city they love,” Danko said. “They endorsed The Butler Way, and everything it stands for—especially caring for others and leading with integrity.

Leaders of Andre’s caliber, humility, and integrity are rare. I know I speak for many in the Butler community when I say that the opportunity to know him and to learn from him was a genuine privilege.”

Danko’s statement said the university will notify campus when funeral arrangements are made available.

The Collegian will continue to update this story when more information becomes available.