Wilmar Estate – Largest Bequest In UBC’s Faculty of Medicine History

Long Time

For the past two years it has been my privilege to market the Wilmar Estate at 2050 SW Marine Drive. It is a complicated piece of property with multiple zoning designations as well as a ‘B’ status Tudor style Heritage home. After many months of working with the seller, buyer, greeting thousands of people interested in visiting the estate, satisfying the needs and wants of heritage committees, neighbourhood interests, and a multitude of Vancouver city departments it has finally sold.

01 - Family Pictures Judith Jardine 03

Who Benefits

A regular question that arose during those many months was ‘who gets the money from the sale’. In part I am able to share with you that one of the beneficiaries of the estate is the Faculty of Medicine at the University of British Columbia. In their press release they note that it is the largest bequest in UBC history.

“Faculty of Medicine Receives Largest Bequest in UBC History”

Judith Jardine was a triple alumnus of UBC, earning a B.A. and M.A. in French, and a Bachelor of Library Science. While she might not have had any obvious connection to UBC’s Faculty of Medicine, a hefty bequest by Ms Jardine certainly demonstrated she felt that the work going on at the university was important. The shy philanthropist, who passed away in 2006 at the age of 81, left a $6.4 million estate gift to the Faculty of Medicine—the largest in its 63-year history. “The funds received by the Faculty will grow the Willard Kitchen Memorial Fund, named for Ms Jardine’s maternal grandfather,” explains Dr. Howard Feldman, a Professor of Neurology and Executive Associate Dean of Research at UBC. Ms Jardine desired that at least half the income from the fund should be put towards medical research and the remainder towards student bursaries. Within the research allocation there is no specific designation, allowing the Faculty to determine how the funds are applied. “We often face critical unmet needs in developing research within the Faculty, and having funds available can make a remarkable difference,” says Dr. Feldman. “For example, earlier this year we had two researchers within a competition that had fundable grants, but the granting agency required a matching contribution from the university to fulfill the funding obligations. Having resources like this enables us to address this type of need.” In an era where resources are increasingly constrained, students and researchers often have more good ideas than can be funded through traditional sources. Gifts like Ms Jardine’s facilitate the exploration of new ideas and could provide the seed funds necessary to gather preliminary data and be successful in larger grant competitions. For students, Ms Jardine’s gift will provide relief from education costs. It will provide learning opportunities and help build a culture that integrates research and clinical care, a key to providing better service to patients. “The support of the donor community is integral to building a robust research platform that ultimately benefits the health of British Columbians,” says Dr. Feldman. “We aim for the research to be translated from the lab and from the clinic to the community, so that there is benefit to health. Ms Jardine’s gift will have a considerable impact in terms of benefits for our students, for our faculty and for our leadership.” Judith Jardine was the last descendent of William Kitchen, a railway tycoon from New Brunswick who moved to BC where he became a director of the Pacific Great Eastern Railway, later BC Rail. Although Ms Jardine lived a quiet, unassuming life, her generosity will impact all British Columbians through the training of future doctors and advancement of life-saving research.

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Reader Comments:

Village Whisperer Says:
December 5th, 2013 at 3:54 pm

Congrats on the sale Larry. In a way I’m sad to hear it has been sold.

December 5th, 2013 at 4:27 pm


Thanks it has been an interesting and challenging project but, I’m happy to move on. Like you I too am sad in knowing that the sense of grand living will be lost.

Sam Says:
December 5th, 2013 at 7:24 pm

Wow, has it been that long? Seemed like only a year..time flies. Congrats on the sale.

Kate Says:
December 8th, 2013 at 6:11 pm

Congrats on the sale Larry! It really is a special property, and I also feel almost a sense of sadness… maybe it’s just nostalgia. End of an era for a beautiful property, and also, the start of a new chapter.

December 8th, 2013 at 7:18 pm


Nostalgia – Don’t be too hasty. I’m hopeful she will survive.

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