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Vinik Family Foundation makes historic gift to the Tampa Museum of Art
$5 million endowment dedicated to support sustainable leadership; Largest gift ever made to institution’s foundation.

TAMPA, FLA.- The Tampa Museum of Art today announced that the Vinik Family Foundation will make a $5 million gift to the Museum’s endowment. The landmark gift will name and endow the position of Executive Director, whose title will be known as the Penny and Jeff Vinik Executive Director of the Tampa Museum of Art.

This, the largest gift made to the Museum’s endowment fund in the institution’s history, is made possible by the Vinik Family Foundation (VFF), founded by Penny and Jeff Vinik, long-time patrons and donors of the Tampa Museum of Art. Penny, who has held various board positions throughout the years, has also co-chaired the Museum’s strategic planning committee and led the executive search committee during the hiring of Executive Director, Dr. Michael Tomor. Currently, Penny serves as vice-chair on the Museum’s board of trustees.

In Fall 2018, VFF loaned Yayoi Kusama's Infinity Room LOVE IS CALLING to the Tampa Museum of Art. An immersive, experiential work of art, LOVE IS CALLING invited visitors to enter a mirrored room with tentacle-like soft sculptures featuring with Kusama's signature polka dots and changing colors hanging from the ceiling and positioned on the floor. The exhibition was part of TMA’s Season of Love, a series of three exhibitions that shared the theme of love, presented by the Vinik Family Foundation. The Vinik’s ongoing generosity and endowment gift to the Museum is yet another signal that the Vinik’s aim to support the causes they are passionate about.

“We’ve been so excited and inspired by Dr. Michael Tomor’s leadership and vision for the future, in particular his passion for securing the viability of the Museum for generations to come. We want to ensure the stability and financial security of this position,” said Penny Vinik.

“We are very proud of the Tampa Museum of Art as an institution and as a vital part of the city in which we live and work,” stated Jeff Vinik. “Our gift is a way to celebrate the Museum’s upcoming centennial anniversary and support TMA directors as they continue to lead one of Tampa’s most acclaimed cultural institutions.”

“This landmark gift will support the initiatives of the Museum’s strategic plan for years to come,” said Debra Williams, President of the Museum’s foundation board. “Endowment gifts are invested permanently and only the earnings are used for the donors’ intention. The original gift therefore remains intact in perpetuity generating income for the Museum’s operations for future generations. We are grateful to Penny and Jeff Vinik and the Vinik Family Foundation for the value they place on the Museum and its leadership.”

Executive Director Michael Tomor remarked, “I am honored by this transformative gift to the Museum, and we are all grateful to the Vinik’s for their continued support. There is no greater legacy gift than a gift to the endowment, and this sets a strong foundation for future leadership to build on.”

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