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New UCLA soccer stadium named after Philadelphia native

Wallis Annenberg, president of the Annenberg Foundation, will have her name on the new soccer stadium her foundation is partially funding.

Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

The new soccer-specific home for the UCLA men's and women's soccer teams will be named after a Philadelphia native.

Construction of Wallis Annenberg Stadium, to be completed in phases as money is raised, is projected to begin this fall. The 3,000-seat stadium will be built at North Athletic Field, which is currently used for intramural and club sports.

The Annenberg Foundation, which moved from Radnor, Pa. to Los Angeles in 2009 after the death of Leonore Annenberg, has pledged half of the $10 million needed to pay for the privately funded project.

Annenberg, president of CEO of the Annenberg Foundation, was born in Philadelphia in 1939 and grew up on the Main Line in a 15-acre estate called Inwood (purchased by Eagles owner Jeff Lurie in 2007). She took over her family's billion dollar foundation after her stepmother's death in 2009. Her father, Walter Annenberg, was U.S. ambassador to Britain and oversaw a media empire that included TV Guide and The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The UCLA Bruins soccer teams currently play at Drake Stadium, an 11,700-seat track and soccer facility that has tents for locker rooms.

Wallis already has her name on a performing arts center in Beverly Hills and there are auditoriums with the Annenberg name at several universities but this will be the first soccer stadium to pay homage to the family.