The McNAIR Center got off the ground in 2011 based on a pledge of $5 million by University of South Carolina alumna and benefactor Darla Moore, '75, business.
Moore, who is vice president of the investment firm Rainwater Inc., made the donation in memory of her fellow Lake City, S.C., native Ronald E. McNair.
Moore's generosity to the university over the years has included two major gifts totaling $70 million to the business school, which was named for her.
In 2012, USC announced a second $5 million pledge to the center, this one from Charleston businesswoman and philanthropist Anita Zucker.
Zucker is the daughter of Holocaust survivors who came to America in search of freedom and a new way of life. From a young age, she was influenced by her parents' dedication to family and community.
Zucker and her family are leaders in philanthropic support of education and communities in South Carolina.
As a former elementary school teacher, she knows the importance of an educated world.
Her $5 million gift to the University of South Carolina will create the Zucker Institute for Aerospace Innovation within the McNAIR Center.
Zucker is chairwoman and CEO of The InterTech Group, a diversified corporation that she founded with her late husband, Jerry Zucker.
The InterTech Group, with 15,000 employees, produces devices used in aerospace, aviation and power generation, as well as other products and services.
In recognition of her altruism, Anita Zucker has earned the state's highest civilian honor, the Order of the Palmetto.