Butler Institute Gets $250,000 to Fund Programs, Projects

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Butler Institute of American Art today announced the receipt of several grants, including two from the National Endowment for the Arts along with funds from area companies and foundations.

The bulk of the $250,000 the Butler Institute received was from the state of Ohio for capital improvements and other projects, the museum reported.

“The Butler relies on the generosity of the community to support its free education programming. We are grateful for this extraordinary good will,” Dr. Louis Zona, the museum’s director, said in a prepared statement. Grant funds will be used to support the museum’s educational mission as well as capital projects.

One of two NEA Arts Engagement in American Communities grants the Butler Institute received was awarded to support the museum’s 2014-2015 Good Neighbors program, which brings outreach programs to fourth grade students. Mary Grace Hune and the Verizon Foundation Marching Incentive Program provided additional funding for the program. It will continue through out the 2015-2016 school year with support from the Thomases Family Endowment of the Youngstown Area Jewish Federation, First Place Community Fund of the Community Foundation of the Mahoning Valley and the Ruth Beecher Charitable Trust through the PNC Charitable Trust Grant Review Committee.

The NEA arts engagement fund provided a grant to support free educational programming during the October-November exhibition of California Impressionism from the Irvine Museum of Art. The exhibition also was funded by the Florence Simon Beecher Foundation.

A third federal grant, a Preservation Assistance Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, will be used to assess the condition of works on paper in the collection, and to identify works that are in need of immediate preservation, Zona said.

Additionally, the Ohio Arts Council has awarded a substantial grant to the Butler to support the cost of museum operations, he said.

Funding for capital projects includes support from the Youngstown Foundation and the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission for replacement of humidity control system units and the replacement of the museum’s small elevator.

Funding from the Thomases Family Endowment will be earmarked to replace damaged shades in the glass ceiling of the Beecher Court atrium. The Thomases Family Endowment also funded an upcoming retrospective of works by Jack Tworkov, to be shown this fall at the Butler’s Trumbull County Branch.

Grants by local foundations and businesses include funding of the Butler’s recent Summer Visual Art Day Camp for children by the Home Savings Community Foundation, Kiwanis of Youngstown, Piper’s Printing in Canfield and Foundation Medici of Trumbull County.

An “Arts in the Early Morning” program, which funds the cost of the Butler being open for school group tours , has been funded by the Dominion Foundation. The Schwebel Family Foundation has again funded the printing of holographic cards featuring the Butler masterwork “Snap the Whip” by Winslow Homer. The cards are distributed to the 30,000 school children who visit the museum each year.

A grant from Stifel Nicolaus will support both the annual community open house Nov. 22, and the museum’s American Holiday Arts and Crafts Show and Sale the first weekend in December.

SOURCE: Butler Institute of American Art.

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