Gwen R. Knapp, 86 of Stuart, Florida, formerly of Chicago, Illinois died surrounded by her family on June 6, 2021. Gwen met and married the love of her life, Jules (z"l), in 1956. Together they had 4 daughters. Chari (z"l), Elyse Sollender (Jeffrey z"l) (Mark Lohkemper), Joy (z"l), and Susan Schulman (Bradley). 4 Grandchildren- Shane, DJ, Griffin (Kylie Ford) and Jonah. Her grandchildren were the pride of her life. She spent time with them at book fairs, libraries, shopping, playing games, movies to name a few. Her love and talent for the stock market, collecting and business as well as her strength of character, integrity and pioneering spirit inspired her family. Gwen was a Bronze Life Master in Bridge, an accomplished gardener and a talented needleworker. She was President of The Jules and Gwen Knapp Charitable Foundation where she built long time partnerships with many leading institutions in science and education. She was also the President of the Knapp Family office where she managed all operations. She was the founder and President of The Lupus Foundation of Illinois. In 2006, Gwen and Jules made a landmark gift to The University of Chicago to name the Jules and Gwen Knapp Center for Biomedical Discovery. Gwen also founded the Gwen Knapp Center for Lupus and Immunology Research at The University of Chicago where she served on the committee for Biological Sciences. In the 1990's Gwen established a scholarship at her alma mater, Northwestern University. She also served on the Board of The Martin County Education Foundation and has been involved in ORT America and the Jewish United Fund of Chicago. She has received numerous awards including The University of Chicago Medal, the institution's highest honor. Gwen, along with Jules, were also named the first honorary fellows of the Division of Biological Sciences in recognition of the impact they have made to the future of medical research. "We hope that our gifts will advance science and the future health and benefit of all kind." Gwen was a committed philanthropist and often gave quietly to others as well as visibly. This generosity of time, spirit and resources, will have an impact for generations. In lieu of flowers please make a donation to: The Gwen Knapp Center for Lupus and Immunology Research and the Medicine Hospital at the University of Chicago. Checks may be payable to the "University of Chicago" and mailed to; University of Chicago Gifts-Gwen Knapp Memorial, 5235 S. Harper Court, 4th floor, Chicago, IL 60615, or can be donated online at giving.uchicago.edu/gwen-knapp
. Memorial contributions can also be made to: Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago, 30 South Wells St., Chicago, IL 60606, www.juf.org
. Graveside service, Thursday 2 PM at Shalom Memorial Park, 1700 W. Rand Road, Arlington Heights. For a link to view the service, shiva information or to leave condolences: Shalom Memorial Funeral Home, www.shalom2.com
or (847) 255-3520.
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Published by Chicago Tribune on Jun. 9, 2021.