PNCA Press Center

Pacific Northwest College of Art Announces Successful Close of College’s First Comprehensive Capital

Release date: 09/23/10

September 23, 2010

Leslie Miller, External Relations Specialist
Pacific Northwest College of Art
503.821.8959 |

Becca Biggs, Director of Communications
Pacific Northwest College of Art
503.821.8892 |

Pacific Northwest College of Art Announces Successful Close of College’s First Comprehensive Capital Campaign

September 23, 2010 – PORTLAND, OR – The Board of Governors of Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) has announced that the first comprehensive fundraising campaign in the College’s history will close at the end of September, exceeding its $32 million goal. Significant support from individuals, corporations and foundations has made possible the transformation of PNCA from a small regional school to a distinctive and nationally competitive college of art and design. During the Campaign for PNCA+FIVE (the Ford Institute for Visual Education), the College has experienced tremendous growth, more than doubling enrollment, securing the purchase of its main campus building at 1241 NW Johnson Street, establishing new scholarship endowments, enhancing programmatic support, forming a partnership with Museum of Contemporary Craft and quadrupling the College’s general endowment fund.

A major milestone of the campaign was a $15 million gift from the late Hallie Ford in 2007. This contribution, the largest gift ever made to an arts organization in Oregon, has enabled the College to become an innovative center of excellence and has served as a catalyst for expanding the College’s graduate programs and offerings to the community. A portion of Mrs. Ford’s gift along with three separate $1 million dollar donations from the Harold and Arlene Schnitzer Care Foundation, Maybelle Clark Macdonald Fund and PNCA Board Chair Al Solheim enabled the College to purchase its main campus building.

Other significant contributions that enabled the College to anchor its Pearl District campus include $500,000 from the Meyer Memorial Trust, $250,000 from the McGeady Family Foundation and $150,000 from The Collins Foundation. Nearly two dozen other individuals and foundations made gifts of $100,000 or more to support strategic initiatives laid out in the College’s Centennial vision.

Through the Campaign for PNCA+FIVE, which began in January of 2004, the College has raised $32,300,000. “We have come further than we could have imagined when this campaign began,” PNCA President Tom Manley said. “Thanks to the generosity of so many, we have initiated the transformation of PNCA into one of the nation’s most exciting and dynamic schools of art and design. As a school of influence with reach throughout Oregon and beyond, PNCA is becoming a center of excellence, creativity, and ideas as Hallie Ford envisioned when she honored PNCA with her gift.”

Through PNCA+FIVE, the College has brought world-renowned speakers and artists to Portland, including Lewis Hyde, Jacques Ranciere, Martin Kersels and James Turrell as well its current writer-in-residence, Pulitzer Prize nominated author Barry Sanders. PNCA+FIVE has also provided start-up funds for the College’s first two graduate programs, an MFA in Visual Studies and an MFA in Applied Craft and Design, the latter in collaboration with the Oregon College of Art and Craft. New graduate programs, including an MFA in Design Studies, has been approved and will begin recruiting students for a Fall 2011 launch. Also, the recently launched BFA in Contemporary Animated Arts and the biannual Boundary Crossings: An Institute in Contemporary Animated Arts have developed under the support of PNCA+FIVE.

“My mother was an artist herself, and a great believer in supporting engines of excellence throughout Oregon,” said Allyn Ford of his mother’s gift to establish PNCA+FIVE. “I believe she would be thrilled about the momentum that her investment has helped to spark.”
“Through the countless generous donations and hard work by numerous individuals, the campaign has increased PNCA’s abilities to offer scholarships to talented students,” states Al Solheim, Chairman of the PNCA Board. “We are especially grateful for the generosity of Dorothy Lemelson and the Lemelson Education Foundation. The Lemelson Scholars program is the most prestigious award the College offers, supporting four students each year. Through Dolly’s estate plans, the scholarship will be endowed in perpetuity. I am truly proud of the success of this campaign.”

In addition to the Lemelson Scholars, Ed Cauduro established a permanent scholarship to support the Cauduro Scholars with a major gift of $1,000,000 through the Oregon Community Foundation. Other scholarships that will be made possible because of the campaign include the Laura Russo Endowed Scholarship and a scholarship in memory of longtime faculty member Manuel Izquierdo.
Alumnus, campaign chair and noted sculptor Lee Kelly ’59 said that one of the most important goals achieved through the campaign is the acquisition of the College’s main campus in Portland’s downtown Pearl District. “This building anchors a campus that provides young artists with excellent spaces and facilities to explore ideas and make their work,” said Kelly. PNCA offers nine undergraduate majors in various fine and applied arts disciplines, including a new BFA in Contemporary Animated Arts, launched in Fall 2010.

“We are tremendously grateful for Lee’s leadership of the campaign effort as well as for his extraordinary personal generosity,” said Manley. Lee Kelly’s Oregon City Studio will be bequeathed to the College as part of the Campaign, to be used in perpetuity as a studio for artists, and a retreat center for writing workshops and other creative projects.

In addition to Kelly and Lemelson, former PNCA President Sally Lawrence and noted art collector Carol Smith-Larson are among the donors who have chosen to make the College part of their estate plans. An estate gift of $200,000 from Peter and Marjorie Belluschi, through Oregon Community Foundation, has also helped to grow a new Founder’s Society program for the College’s future while helping meet curriculum, programming and long-term strategic initiatives.

“PNCA began in 1909 as the Museum Art School, and the Centennial Campaign for PNCA+FIVE has clearly vaulted the school to new levels,” said Development Committee chairwoman and generous donor Kathleen Lewis, who is currently co-chair with fellow board member Elizabeth Leach of the 2011 PNCA Benefit Art Auction with Bonhams and Butterfield slated for February 22, 2011. “We are grateful to the local community for this incredible success, and for helping to make a difference in the lives of young students.”

While the Centennial Campaign for PNCA+FIVE is coming to a close, the College is continuing to plan for the future, with a new dormitory project planned for 2012, as well as the renovation of the former post office at 511 Broadway, which was given to PNCA through a Department of Education program.
“We are grateful for the success of this campaign, and for the exciting opportunity this moment provides to continue to realize the mission of the school,” said Ann Edlen, vice chair of the Board of Governors. “Just as PSU anchors Portland’s south Park blocks, with the main campus building, the Museum of Contemporary Craft, and the 511 Broadway Building, PNCA is an integral part of the emerging creative services landscape that is putting Portland – and Oregon – on the map.”

About Pacific Northwest College of Art
Since its founding in 1909, Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) has become a leader in innovative educational programs that connect students to a global perspective in the visual arts and design. In addition to its nine Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees, PNCA offers graduate education with an MFA in Visual Studies, as well as an MFA in Applied Craft and Design developed in collaboration with the Oregon College of Art and Craft.

PNCA is actively involved in Portland’s cultural life through exhibitions and a vibrant public program of lectures and internationally recognized visiting artists, designers and creative thinkers. With the support of PNCA+FIVE (Ford Institute for Visual Education), the College has a partnership with the nationally acclaimed Museum of Contemporary Craft. For more information, visit

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