U of T and Sinai Health announce new gift from Larry and Judy Tanenbaum to establish the Tanenbaum Institute for Science in Sport

Larry and Judy Tanenbaum and the Tanenbaum Family Foundation’s generous investment will lead to advances in the science and medicine of sport, improving health care for high-performance athletes in the GTA and beyond (photo by Shutterstock).

Established through a generous $20-million gift from the Larry and Judy Tanenbaum Family Foundation, the Tanenbaum Institute for Science in Sport at the University of Toronto will be a global centre of excellence for high-performance sport science and sports medicine.

The Tanenbaum Institute will yield new knowledge at the intersection of research and practice, translating discoveries into innovations that dramatically impact health and performance across all athlete populations.

The Tanenbaum Institute will bring together the leading sport science research of U of T’s Faculty of Kinesiology & Physical Education, the sports medicine research expertise of the Temerty Faculty of Medicine, and the renowned clinical and research leadership of the Dovigi Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Clinic and the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute at Sinai Health.

“Today marks a monumental step forward in support of Canadian high-performance athletics, one that will lead to improved athlete performance, safety and well-being,” said U of T President Meric Gertler. “Thanks to the extraordinary generosity of Larry and Judy Tanenbaum, the Tanenbaum Institute for Science in Sport will become one of the world’s leading centres in the field. And the Institute will be truly unique, combining the strengths of U of T’s top-ranked research programs and sports medicine departments with leading clinical care centres at Sinai Health, all in the heart of one of the world’s most celebrated sporting cities.”

The Tanenbaum Institute for Science in Sport will transform athlete health and well-being

The Tanenbaum Institute for Science in Sport will help model and predict athlete performance and improve health outcomes based on a wealth of data from across the Greater Toronto Area. This new knowledge will support high-performance athletes across a spectrum that includes world-class professional, non-professional and para athletes, including from diverse and underrepresented communities, as well as athletes striving for high-performance optimization in recreational sports.

The institute will catalyze U of T and Sinai Health’s sport science and sports medicine expertise, generating novel insights and innovative technologies and interventions that improve athlete performance, health, safety and well-being; reduce risk of injury; accelerate and optimize recovery and rehabilitation; and advance high-performance sport in a manner that is safe, welcoming, inclusive and accessible to all.

To this end, the Tanenbaum Institute will work in partnership with sports clinics, associations and organizations, including Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) and its teams: the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Raptors, Toronto FC and the Toronto Argonauts, as well as the Toronto Marlies, Raptors 905 and TFC 2. 

“I truly believe that sport unites us, inspires us, and offers all people a path toward becoming their best selves,” said Larry Tanenbaum, chairman of Tanenbaum Family Foundation and MLSE. “The Tanenbaum Institute will bring together sports medicine, sport science and data science to encourage athletic engagement, enhance performance and accelerate recovery and rehabilitation. I’m proud to join with U of T and Sinai Health in transforming athlete health and well-being.”

Support for innovative research in sports medicine

Larry and Judy Tanenbaum’s gift will be combined with more than $20 million in additional support from U of T and Sinai Health. This investment will establish a Directorship and Research Acceleration Fund to support bold, innovative research across the institute, the university, and Sinai Health; create a groundbreaking new Chair in Sport Science and Data Modelling, a Chair in Musculoskeletal Regenerative Medicine, and a Professorship in Orthopaedic Sports Medicine; and provide funding for a range of cutting-edge research, innovations and clinical programs.

“The Tanenbaum Institute will enjoy a remarkable head start, thanks to the amazing research and clinical sports medicine leadership we have amassed here at Sinai Health through the Dovigi Orthopaedic Sports Medicine Clinic and across U of T,” said Dr. Gary Newton, president and CEO of Sinai Health. “Establishing this landmark Institute is only the beginning. We look forward to transforming high-performance sport together with our many industry, government, and community partners.”


“The Tanenbaum Institute’s cutting-edge research will play a leading role in advancing high performance sport in a manner that is safe, welcoming, inclusive and accessible to all,” said Gretchen Kerr, dean of the Faculty of Kinesiology & Physical Education at U of T. “We are so excited to be joining in this important research enterprise by pooling together our academic research, large and diverse athlete base, and training facilities with the world-class clinicians of Sinai Health.”

“We’re incredibly excited by the potential for the Tanenbaum Institute to transform sports medicine across Canada and to train future generations of sport science and sports medicine leaders,” said Trevor Young, dean of the Temerty Faculty of Medicine at U of T. “By bringing together so many disciplines, the Tanenbaum Institute will make breakthrough big data-driven findings that will lead to better athlete health, safety and performance.”

The Institute combines a diverse array of sport science and sports medicine talent. The Institute’s research and clinical foci will include mild traumatic brain injuries, orthopaedics, regenerative medicine, biomechanics, wearable physiological and training monitoring technologies, technologies in parasport, mathematical and statistical modelling applied to individual athlete and team analytics, nutrition, individual and team psychology and health, exercise physiology and more.

An impressive philanthropic legacy

This latest gift from the Tanenbaum Family Foundation builds on an impressive philanthropic legacy at U of T, Sinai Health and beyond. Larry and Judy Tanenbaum and the Tanenbaum family have been long-time supporters of U of T. In 2014, they helped establish the Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies at the Faculty of Arts & Science, one of North America’s leading programs of its kind. They also have also established several scholarships in support of student athletes.

At Sinai Health, Larry and Judy Tanenbaum have made several transformative investments. In 2013, the Tanenbaums gave $35 million to rename the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute (LTRI), accelerating Sinai Health’s biomedical research institute.

Larry and Judy Tanenbaum have also made major gifts in support of cutting-edge physical and mental health research across Canada. Their generosity led to the creation of the Tanenbaum Open Science Initiative at McGill University and the Tanenbaum Centre for Pharmacogenetics at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.