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Donation prompts renaming of West Van Spirit Room

ROBERT and Lily Lee have done it again.

ROBERT and Lily Lee have done it again.

The Lower Mainland's most philanthropic duo's $85,000 contribution to the West Vancouver Community Centres Society and the District of West Vancouver is the largest private donation in the history of either organization.

The centre has never renamed a room before, but exceptions must be made in the face of such profound generosity: the Spirit Room will now be called the Lily Lee Spirit Room.

Despite their tremendous wealth, the Lees are familiar faces at the public West Vancouver Community Centre.

"Lily has been attending fitness classes for more than 30 years," said society executive director Sue Ketler.

For Lily Lee, the West Vancouver Community Centre is the heart of the community.

"I have fond memories of the original community centre where I made many friends. I am so pleased to see so many people participating in all the activities," said Lee in a release.

This donation gives the centre the leeway to provide additional services and equipment to community members.

The West Vancouver Community Centres Society works alongside the District of West Vancouver and provides oversight in fundraising and engaging the community, as well as feedback on how centre resources can best serve the community.

The Lees, a longtime West Vancouver family, are renowned for their contributions.

Robert H. Lee is the founder of the UBC Properties Trust, the Robert H. Lee Graduate School at the Sauder School of Business and the Robert and Lily Lee Family Community Health Centre in Vancouver.

The Prosperity Group founder and chairman is the recipient of the Order of Canada and the Order of British Columbia.

- Annie Ellison