Eau Claire, Wisc. (NEWS RELEASE) -- The philanthropy drive to raise private funding for the Confluence Arts Center in downtown Eau Claire has collected more than $5 million so far in commitments and gifts.
Tom and Jill Barland and Gerald and Meghan Bauer are co-chairing the fundraising campaign. The Confluence Campaign aims to secure the $13.5 million for the Confluence Arts Center. The Barlands, long-time community leaders, were among the first large contributors to the campaign. The Bauers represent an impressive group of young local entrepreneurs who are also making substantial philanthropic commitments to the project. The Barlands and the Bauers say they are pleased with the progress the campaign has made so far securing charter members for the “70 with 50 Campaign” and “The 40” fundraising groups, but say that a substantial, more visible and organized effort still needs to be made the coming months:
“There are many opportunities for anyone who wants to support the Confluence Project. We’ll aggressively promote them between now and the end of the year. To ensure our successful progress through the non-state agency grant process for the state-funded portion of the project’s capital campaign, we have to show substantial support in the community,” Confluence Campaign co-chair Jill Barland said. “The community has demonstrated its support for the arts center with our voices and our votes so far. Now is the time to show that we’ll put our money into it as well.”
Former city council president and county planning and development director Wallace Rogers has signed on as campaign coordinator. He will provide day-to-day leadership and management support for the fundraising effort. He is also writing several grant applications and requests for funding that are being submitted to regional and national charitable foundations that support performing arts centers, downtown revitalization, and economic development projects. Rogers says he expects to make several gift announcements in the next few months.
About the Confluence Campaign
The Confluence Campaign has launched five fundraising campaigns: individual donations; corporate pledges; foundation grants; text-to-give and crowd-funding challenges; an employee challenge program sponsored by an expanding list of local businesses. Naming opportunities are also being offered at the regional arts center and for public places adjacent to the center.
If you are interested in making a gift to the Confluence, contact the Confluence Campaign or the Eau Claire Community Foundation. If you are interested in getting involved in the philanthropy drive, contact Wallace Rogers.
Sue Bornick, Director
Eau Claire Community Foundation
306 S. Barstow Street, Suite 104
Eau Claire, WI 54701
Tom and Jill Barland
Gerald and Meghan Bauer
Rogers & Associates
315 Riverfront Terrace, Suite 102
Eau Claire, WI 54703
The Eau Claire Community Foundation is serving as the giving conduit for Confluence Campaign and will receive, hold and disperse all non-designated funds for the Confluence Arts Center.
About the Confluence Project
The Confluence Project is a public/private partnership engaged in an $80 million downtown redevelopment project. The major component of the project is a $50 million regional arts center. The arts center will be used by community arts organizations and UW-Eau Claire, and will be the region’s venue for touring and local stage and musical performance events. The $13.5 million in philanthropic giving that aims to be raised during the Confluence Campaign will be applied to help build the regional arts center, planned to open autumn, 2018.