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Michener Art Museum's Capital Campaign Exceeds $10 Million

DOYLESTOWN, PA.- The James A. Michener Art Museum Board of Trustees today announces that its Centennial Campaign has reached the $10.3 million mark, surpassing the original goal of $10 million. Supported by a recent $1 million pledge from The Martin Family Foundation, the Museum is now raising the goal to $11.1 million to fund its expansion and renovation plans. In addition to fully matching a $600,000 challenge grant presented to the Board of Trustees by H. F. (Gerry) and Marguerite Lenfest, the Foundation also plans to match dollar for dollar an additional $400,000. The Museum will name the new 5,000 square-foot gallery The Syd and Sharon Martin Wing in recognition of their support.

"The Museum appreciates the enormous generosity of Syd and Sharon Martin," said Lou Della Penna, Centennial Campaign Co-Chair. "The Board of Trustees, with one hundred percent participation, has donated over $5 million to the expansion efforts. This phenomenal support demonstrates the desire of the community to stand behind the Museum's long-term commitment to preserving the arts and cultural heritage of our region."

Syd Martin, who joined the Museum's Board of Trustees in 2008, added: "We're proud to support the Michener and to help this important institution reach its full potential. We hope our challenge grant serves as a capstone effort to stimulate community giving as the Museum reaches out to members, museum supporters, business partners, old and new friends to take this campaign to a successful conclusion."

The Martin Family Foundation was established by Syd and Sharon Martin in 2005, with the objective of providing financial support to qualified organizations dedicated to improving the health, education and welfare of mankind.

"Community fundraising is still pivotal in seeing this project to fruition," explained Ted Fernberger, Centennial Campaign Co-Chair. "The first phase of construction began in July and is expected to wrap up in early fall of 2009, and completion of the second phase is currently scheduled for early 2010. Given the rising costs of materials, we now anticipate that the total project will cost $12 million."

In addition to the new upper level gallery that is large enough—and flexible enough—to accommodate major, nationally touring exhibitions, the new wing's lower level expands the Museum's curatorial and administrative capabilities. The first phase of construction also increases the art storage, preparation and handling facility, and installs new climate control systems for the entire museum.

The second phase of the project is slated to begin in the summer of 2009. The patio area of the Patricia D. Pfundt Sculpture Garden will be covered with glass, creating a premier indoor event space for large public programs and private events. The second phase also includes the renovation of the Ann and Herman Silverman Pavilion into an education complex with two classrooms, a lecture space and a dedicated children's gallery.

The Board of Trustees selected RMJM Hillier to design an expansion and renovation plan that addresses the Museum's current and future needs. The international architectural firm has completed projects in 41 states and 27 countries and has been honored with more than 250 national, state and local design awards. Yet, their local roots in Princeton, New Jersey ensure that they understand the importance of balancing regional pride with world-class achievements.

To learn how to make a gift to the James A. Michener Centennial Campaign, contact Carol A. Nelson, Director of Advancement at or (215) 340-9800 ext.167.

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