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Detroit Institute of Arts announces $26.8 million in pledges from Michigan businesses for Grand Bargain
Museum patrons view Diego Rivera's "Detroit Industry" frescos at the Detroit Institute of Arts. AFP PHOTO/MIRA OBERMAN.

DETROIT, MICH.- The Detroit Institute of Arts announced today that Roger S. Penske and Penske Corporation, Quicken Loans and the Rock Ventures Family of Companies, DTE Energy, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan (BCBSM), Meijer, Comerica Bank, JPMorgan Chase Foundation, Consumers Energy and Delta Air Lines Foundation have pledged a total of $26.8 million toward the DIA’s commitment to raise $100 million as part of a “grand bargain” that will help the City of Detroit emerge from bankruptcy, support city pensioners and protect the museum’s art collection for the public.

"We are extremely pleased to see this very generous corporate support for the grand bargain and City of Detroit pensioners from these major Michigan businesses,” said Eugene A. Gargaro Jr., DIA board chairman. “They all have a long history of civic and community support and these leadership pledges demonstrate their strong commitment to Detroit’s future. We thank them for helping the DIA to fulfill its $100 million Grand Bargain commitment and know that other donors will join in this great success story for our city and our state."

The $26.8 million comprises $10 million from Roger S. Penske and Penske Corporation, $5 million from DTE Energy, $5 million from Quicken Loans and the Rock Ventures Family of Companies, $2.5 million from BCBSM, $1 million from Meijer, $1 million from Comerica Bank, $1 million from JPMorgan Chase, $800,000 from Consumers Energy and $500,000 from Delta Air Lines Foundation.

“Penske Corporation and I are proud to join this effort to protect the pensions of city employees while ensuring the long term sustainability of the DIA,” said Roger S. Penske, chairman, Penske Corporation. “It is a historic time for our city when such a diverse group of individuals, government, corporations and foundations come together to take this positive step in the process of revitalizing Detroit. It sets the tone for the work yet to be done. I am optimistic about the future of the city and its citizens.”

These pledges bring the DIA to almost 80% of its grand bargain goal. Some of the commitments were made earlier, but had not been publicly announced.

"We're pleased to support Detroit's Grand Bargain which helps Detroiters, protects the DIA collection, and ultimately advances our city's ability to successfully emerge from bankruptcy on solid footing," said Dan Gilbert, chairman and founder of Rock Ventures and Quicken Loans Inc.

"DTE Energy and the DTE Energy Foundation are proud to be a part of a growing group of corporate and community leaders that are stepping up to support the pensioners and retirees of the city of Detroit and do their part to preserve one of city's true jewels," said Dave Meador, chief administrative officer and vice chairman of DTE Energy. "We believe our contribution, and those of the partners assembled here today, will help the DIA get that much closer to its overall fundraising goal of $100 million, as part of the Grand Bargain. DTE is always committed to doing the right thing for our customers, our employees and our community."

“With this contribution, Blue Cross is further underlining its commitment to Detroit, the people who live here and the city’s rich cultural treasures,” said Daniel J. Loepp, president and CEO of BCBSM. “For 75 years we’ve been proud to call Detroit our home. Today, we’re proud to support the grand bargain as a way to ensure that the city has a bright future.”

The grand bargain will provide Detroit’s pensioners more than $800 million from local donors, local and national foundations and the State of Michigan over a 20-year period, subject to present value discounts for more rapid donor payments. The funds will be directed to a supporting organization of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan and then disbursed for city pension payments over the next 20 years. As part of the grand bargain, the City of Detroit will transfer ownership of the DIA’s collection, building and related assets to the private nonprofit corporation that currently operates the museum, Detroit Institute of Arts, Inc.

“As a bank whose roots in Detroit date back to 1849, Comerica is proud to join these leading businesses in taking this historic step to help our city and one of its most iconic cultural institutions,” said Michael T. Ritchie, president, Comerica Bank-Michigan. “And, personally, as someone who grew up in Detroit as the son of a Detroit police officer, I’m thankful that through our collective efforts, we’re helping to support those who put their lives on the line and who dedicated their lives in service to our great city.”

“Meijer is pleased to join this impressive list of companies to support such an important initiative for our State and the City of Detroit,” said J.K. Symancyk, president of the Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer. “With more than 100 stores in the State and nearly 40 of those in Southeastern Michigan, our success as a retailer has a direct connection to the success of the region, the City and the state of Michigan.”

“Arts and culture represent a key pillar of the Delta Air Lines Foundation, which is why we’re committed to preserving the art of the DIA. We believe that giving back to the communities where Delta people live and work is a civic obligation and is a long-standing part of our company’s culture,” said Andrea Fischer Newman, Delta’s senior vice president – Government Affairs, on behalf of the Delta Air Lines Foundation. “Delta has a long history of serving Michigan and its residents, and we are privileged to be in a position to help keep the DIA an integral part of the community.”

“JPMorgan Chase has made a significant, long-term commitment to Detroit’s recovery by investing in economic growth and tackling blight,” said John Carter, President, Michigan Middle Market, JPMorgan Chase. “We’re proud to support the Grand Bargain and this important next step for the city’s financial future and hardworking Detroiters.”

“As a 127-year company serving Michigan, Consumers Energy understands the vital need to support our communities. We’re pleased to join other Michigan corporations in this historic initiative to help move Detroit’s economic recovery forward,” said Patti Poppe, vice president of customer experience, rates & regulation for Consumers Energy.

The Grand Bargain was proposed by the mediators of city’s bankruptcy and led by Chief Judge Gerald Rosen of the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, and attorney Eugene Driker.

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