With over 50 years of experience in entrepreneurial endeavors, John Pappajohn is one of the most recognized and celebrated business leaders in and outside of the Midwest. Mr. Pappajohn has organized and financed the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Centers at five different universities and colleges in the state of Iowa for more than $30 million. These centers have helped create and launch over 1,000 new companies.
As passionate philanthropists, John and Mary Pappajohn have contributed millions of dollars to state, educational and fine arts endeavors. Mr. Pappajohn's philosophy of giving has helped set the pace for progress and learning in his native Iowa. In addition, all major Iowa universities have benefited from his generosity and ongoing support of their entrepreneurial centers.
Fine arts have been a major component in the Pappajohn's community contributions and personal projects. The Pappajohn Sculpture Garden in Des Moines' Western Gateway was completed in September 2009 and valued at approximately $40 million. Mr. Pappajohn serves as a trustee for the Des Moines Art Center and is a member of the National Committee of the Performing Arts for the Kennedy Center. In addition, Mr. Pappajohn serves on the the Collectors Committee and Trustees Council for the National Gallery of Art. From 1997–2012, he and his wife Mary were recognized as one of the top 200 art collectors in the world by ARTnews magazine. He is also a trustee at the Hirshhorn Museum Washington D.C.