An energy businessman is donating a record $35 million to the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History to build a new dinosaur hall on the National Mall.

The Smithsonian announced the gift on Thursday from David H. Koch, executive vice president of Koch Industries Inc. of Wichita, Kansas. It is the single largest gift in the museum's 102 year history. The Smithsonian Board of Regents voted on Monday to name the new dinosaur hall in Koch's honour. Koch, an engineer, is a billionaire who lives in New York City. He was the Libertarian Party's vice-presidential candidate in 1980 and has been a major donor to conservative political causes. Koch gave the Smithsonian $15 million in 2009 to build a new exhibit hall exploring human evolution over six million years.

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