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In Calgary, the Vi Riddell Children’s Pain and Rehabilitation Centre at the Alberta Children’s Hospital was opened following a $15-million donation and he raised $16 million through a fundraising drive for Ronald McDonald House.
Mount Royal University’s Riddell Library and Learning Centre also bears his name, and he was also a driving force behind the Shaw Charity Classic.
Riddell broadened his philanthropy outside of Calgary with multimillion-dollar gifts to the University of Manitoba and Carleton University. And in 2008, he was honoured with the Order of Canada for his leadership and philanthropy.
The partnership with Perimeter Institute was made before Riddell died in 2018 and is meant to create a space for scientists to harness the intrinsic properties of quantum mechanics to understand and uncover new states of matter.
It was anticipated to be a high-impact investment for humanity, according to Sue Riddell Rose, one of Riddell’s three daughters and the president of the charitable foundation.
“Clay was incredibly excited to discover that we have a true gem like the Perimeter Institute in Canada. He was attracted to just how purposeful Perimeter is about developing a pipeline of talent, and to the humility of the researchers as they seek answers to the universe’s biggest questions,” she said.
Quantum matter is one of the most promising and productive areas in fundamental physics research, according to Perimeter’s director, Robert Myers.