The Center for Arts and Innovation Surpasses its First Fundraising Goal

The Center for Arts and Innovation Surpasses its First Fundraising Goal

The Center raises nearly $30 million in capital from donors across South Florida and the United States; calls on the community to join in history-making project

Boca Raton, FL – November 7, 2023 – The Center for Arts and Innovation announced today it has surpassed the City of Boca Raton’s year-one fundraising threshold. With nearly $30 million in capital commitments raised in recent months, and on the heels of the selection of world-renowned architect Renzo Piano as lead designer, The Center welcomes individuals and organizations looking to join other visionaries as the design process begins and be a part of the creation of a globally-renowned epicenter for creativity, education, innovation, and community.

“It’s thrilling to see our South Florida community support the creation of a 21st-century campus that celebrates and encourages creativity’s essential role in society while also providing a much-needed platform for innovation to flourish,” said Andrea Virgin, Chair & CEO of The Center. “We are grateful for our donors’ tremendous generosity and partnership in the creation of one of the country’s most exciting projects, led by one of the world’s greatest architects, Renzo Piano. For those looking for a front-row seat at how transformational infrastructure comes to be, and one of the first geared to the needs of the 21st century, the time is now to join us on this history-making journey. It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

Projected to break ground in 2025, Boca Raton’s centennial year, The Center will drive a focus on creative, economic, and innovative progress to the region, and will prioritize innovation, sustainability in design, and economic growth at its core. Offering a compelling vision that collocates artistic and cultural creation and experiences alongside multidisciplinary tech innovation, The Center will redefine what a cultural hub can be, who it can serve, and the impact it can have. By establishing itself as a pivotal space for new ideas, experiences, businesses, and innovators of tomorrow to take shape, The Center will set the stage for campuses like it in the future.

First initiated in 2018, The Center was initially conceptualized to fill a 60-mile gap in cultural infrastructure along Florida’s Gold Coast. While The Center has made tremendous progress towards its mission, its landmark placement at the north end of Mizner Park, next to the Boca Raton Museum of Art, realizes the original vision of establishing a cultural hub in Boca Raton’s downtown core, where 40 percent of the land was earmarked for such a purpose. Once operational, The Center is estimated to create more than $1.3 billion in overall economic impact in the area within its first five years, both from retained direct, indirect and induced spending and more than half a million new annual visitors to the city.

Inclusive of a $10 million dollar lead anonymous gift, The Center extends its deepest gratitude to all of its capital donors who have brought the organization to this milestone. Donors who contributed $1 million and more include James & Marta Batmasian Family Foundation; Elizabeth H. Dudley; the Kent Jordan Family; the Schmidt Family Foundation; The Edith & Martin Stein Family Foundation; and Andrea Virgin (in remembrance of Thomas J. Virgin).

In addition, meaningful donations were also made by Peg Anderson, Dr. Robert & Margaret Blume, Heidi Boncher & Joel S. White, the Deyo Family, Steven & Gina Giacona, Stephen & Terri Geifman, Leslie Goldberg, Bonnie Halperin & Family, The Steven Halmos Family Foundation, Eric & Olga Jorgensen, Erica Kasel, Michael & Lisa Kaufman, Patricia & Paul Kilgallon, Nina and Camilo Miguel, Mandell Weiss Charitable Trust, Laura & Shaw McCutcheon, the Mere Foundation, The Perkaus Family, and the Weiner Family.

“The Schmidt Family Foundation is pleased to support The Center for Arts & Innovation. We believe it is an essential project uniting creativity and innovation for the advancement of education, business and the community,” said the Schmidt Family Foundation.

“Jim and I are proud to support The Center for Arts & Innovation and help fulfill a dream of bringing world-class arts & culture to Boca Raton – a dream that is finally materializing after 25 years,” said Marta Batmasian of the James and Marta Batmasian Family Foundation.

“The Steven Halmos Family Foundation is very happy to support such an exciting project like The Center.  We look forward to seeing this wonderful creative arts campus come to life and empower learners of all ages within our region,” said Jeff Halmos of the Steven Halmos Family Foundation.

“As the leadership of the Center for Arts and Innovation continues to exceed numerous City requirements, confidence and excitement builds. I envision an iconic Center for Arts and Innovation that will be celebrated and treasured. There is no doubt that it will be fully utilized and quickly become world-renowned,” said Margaret Blume.

“As long-term residents of Boca Raton, Lisa and I are thrilled to support this project as it represents the exciting next era of our ‘best in class’ community,” said Michael Kaufman, Founder and CEO of Kaufman Lynn Construction.

“Nina and I wholeheartedly champion the arts and The Center’s mission, recognizing their profound influence beyond mere economic impact. Creativity sparks the imagination of students and businesses, fosters innovation, and unites communities to amplify their impact in profound ways,” said Camilo Miguel, CEO of Mast Capital. “As Chair of the Building Committee on The Center’s Board, it is with great pleasure to have our family support the capital campaign and guide Renzo Piano’s design for what is becoming one of the most thrilling cultural projects in our state.”

“The Weiner family is both honored and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this most exciting addition to the Boca Raton cultural community,” said Bruce Weiner, Owner of PEBB Enterprises. “We look forward to giving our continuing support for this incredible endeavor.”

To learn more about The Center of Arts and Innovation and how to show support and get involved, please visit https://thecenterforartsandinnovation.org/.

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About The Center for Arts & Innovation

Conceptually announced in 2018, The Center for Arts and Innovation is a non-profit mission to create a comprehensive, economically vibrant, accessible, innovative and sustainable cultural destination in Boca Raton that will enhance the arts and cultural infrastructure in the city; benefit the residents, patrons, visitors, organizations and civic and business communities; and be a landmark along the Gold Coast for future generations of audiences, artists, students, businesses, technologies and institutions. In addition to infrastructure to support The Center’s education and innovation programming,The Center imagines six diverse & adaptive performance & event spaces — indoor and outdoor—ranging in seating capacity from 99 to 3,500 seats. These can be programmed as individual spaces or combined to host events for nearly 6,000 total attendees.