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Michael Sullivan Donates $100,000 to Fund Lecture Series, Matching Gift Challenge

A generous gift from mathematics textbook author and long-time member Michael Sullivan will fund an annual lecture at the TAA annual conference and a 1:1 matching gift challenge to encourage additional gifts to support the association.

His $100,000 donation is the largest gift TAA has ever received. Michael is a past-president of the TAA Council, served several terms as TAA Council Treasurer, and has been a long-time member.

“Michael’s gift will allow TAA to provide a top-notch lecturer with expertise on the textbook or academic authoring and publishing industry to further our mission of supporting textbook and academic authors in their authoring pursuits,” said TAA Executive Director Kim Pawlak.

One-half of the gift, $50,000, will be used to fund the Michael Sullivan Lecture on Textbook & Academic Authoring, honoring the life and work of Michael Sullivan, who has authored or co-authored more than 120 mathematics textbooks, many of which have been published in multiple editions.

The Lecture will provide a forum for textbook and academic authors to learn from veteran textbook and academic authors and other academic and textbook authoring and publishing experts. It will feature an invited lecturer whose textbook or academic authoring accomplishments are prolific, award-winning, and highly engaging and inspiring, or whose experience in the textbook or academic authoring or publishing industry qualifies them as an expert. The first lecture will take place at the 2025 TAA Conference.

The other half of the gift, $50,000, will be used as a matching gift challenge to encourage additional gifts to support the association. Gifts to the TAA Conference Travel Grant Fund, TAA Webinar Program Fund, or unrestricted gifts made through December 31, 2023 will be matched 1:1 up to $50,000! Make your gift today!

Contributions to each of these funds makes a direct impact on TAA’s operations, provides high quality resources to members, and supports members in need. All charitable contributions are 100% tax deductible.

“I have been involved with TAA for about 35 years and have watched the organization evolve from a membership of 30 to over 2,500,” said Sullivan. The importance of TAA to the textbook and academic publishing community is notable. But as a nonprofit, TAA must rely on its membership for support beyond dues if it is to continue its role as the only organization dedicated to textbook and academic authors. I hope my gift to TAA will inspire others to help TAA continue its work on behalf of authors.”

Michael Sullivan had a long teaching career at Chicago State University as Professor of Mathematics, from 1965 to 1997. His love of teaching spurred him to write textbooks, with his first textbook Finite Mathematics, published in 1972. He has since authored more than 120 textbooks in mathematics, including College Algebra, Trigonometry, Precalculus, Business Calculus, Engineering Calculus, and AP Calculus. His textbooks are used in high schools and universities across the United States and have been translated into a variety of foreign languages, including Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, and Greek. TAA chose several of his texts to receive the McGuffey Longevity Award and honored him with its Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007. He is a long-time member of TAA, and has served as TAA Council President and Treasurer, and is currently TAA’s representative to the Authors Coalition. He continues to author textbooks, but also enjoys travel, tennis, and gardening. He divides his time between living in Naples, FL and Oak Lawn, IL.