Michael and Susanna Steinberg Endowed Scholarship Fund
Michael Steinberg had a long and celebrated career at the most senior levels of the retail business, and never forgot that Dallas was where he had his first big break. For decades, even after moving to California, Michael and Susanna Steinberg have been committed to making life better for people in Texas. With the Michael and Susanna Steinberg Endowed Scholarship Fund, established in 1993, they created educational opportunity at UT.
Their motivation is straightforward and powerful. The Steinbergs would like everyone who seeks a good education to get a chance at one, and have directed their efforts to advancing opportunities for underrepresented students. Michael’s family escaped Germany in 1934 when he was a child and settled in South Africa. Coming to New York as an adult, Michael established and eventually sold a successful business before taking a temporary position at the Abraham & Straus department store as a salesman. His career in retail progressed and led to a management position at Foley’s in Dallas. The Steinbergs lived in Texas for eight years before making a permanent home in San Francisco.
Michael retired briefly in 1993 during a period of uncertainty for the retailing giant Federated Department Stores. He soon came out of retirement and is credited with guiding Macy’s, a Federated holding, through a major turnaround. He retired in 2000 for the final time. Upon his retirement, a business media article credited Michael with “helping turn a bankrupt chain of department stores into a regional powerhouse”. Susanna had a 27-year career in retail as a human resources specialist and always found time and energy for service to her community.
Wherever Michael and Susanna had roots they gave generously to causes they believe in: universities, community and cultural organizations, medical research, and private philanthropic efforts. These include the UCSF AIDS Research Institute, Project Open Hand, San Francisco Ballet, Smuin Ballet, New York City Ballet, World of Children, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Los Angeles Review of Books, New York Public Library, San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association, Brandeis University, and the Fashion Institute of Technology. At UT Austin, 225 students have been the beneficiaries of their generosity since the Michael and Susanna Steinberg Endowed Scholarshipwas established.
Hundreds of Longhorn students have made their way to the future, changing the world we all live in, thanks to the generosity of Michael and Susanna. Their legacy of hope and opportunity will honor them for generations to come.