Annual Report

2018-19 Friends of the Institute Annual Report

Each year the president of the Friends presents an overview of the year at the last Friends lecture and Annual Meeting. This report is from May 19, 2019. The Friends by-laws require the Friends to publish the Annual Meeting notes for our membership in this newsletter.

Good morning and welcome. This is the last Friends lecture of the 2018-19 Lecture series and the Annual Meeting of the Friends of the Institute. Thank you for coming.

My name is Katie Remole.  It is my great pleasure to serve as President of the Friends of the Institute.

I would like to take a moment to recognize former Friends presidents in the audience today. Friends of the Institute has been fortunate to have many strong, dedicated, and thoughtful women lead us to great success these past 97 years.

Group portrait of the Friends of the Institute Former Presidents, May 2019

Please stand as I call your name; and hold applause until the end.

Jean Krogness

Sheila Morgan

Linda Goldenberg

Suzanne Payne

Katie Searl

Carolyn Dahl

Pam Friedland

Connie Sommers

Thank you for joining us today, and for your outstanding contribution to Friends.

Before we can conduct a very brief annual meeting, I would like to establish a quorum.  Molly Van Metre, Friends’ treasurer, is our parliamentarian this morning. Will all members of the Friends of the Institute please raise your hand to be counted?  (5% of membership).

Molly will confirm that we have a quorum.  It appears we have a quorum.

The 97th Annual Meeting of Friends of the Institute is now in session.

In the interest of time, may I have a motion from the floor to suspend the reading of the minutes from the 2018 Annual Meeting?

Is there a second?

Any discussion?

All in favor please say “aye”.

All opposed please say “nay”.

The motion carries.

For any members interested, the minutes from prior Annual Meetings are available in the Friends office or on the Friends web page. (https://friends.artsmia.org)

Before we begin the business portion of our meeting, I would like to give you a brief summary of the Friends year.

  • Art in Bloom 2019 was a huge success thanks to our Art in Bloom co-chairs Barb Champ and Kris King.  Many thanks also to the Art in Bloom committees, all the volunteers who donated thousands of hours before and during the event, and Mia leadership and staff. There were 165 pedestal floral artists and 20 commercial florists who transformed Mia into a flower filled festival that brought in nearly 50,000 people during our four-day event. And this, despite an April blizzard on opening day!  Without Art in Bloom, how would we realize spring has arrived in Minnesota?
  • Eugene Delacroix’s masterpiece Still Life with Dahlias, Zinnias, Hollyhocks and Plums now hangs in the galleries, Friends’ gift to Mia in commemoration of our 100th anniversary in 2022.  As you will hear shortly from our treasurer Molly, these past two years finds us well on our way toward fulfilling our commitment to the museum.  This acquisition nicely punctuates the power of Friends working together to further our mission of supporting, enhancing and sustaining the collections and programs of Mia.

 

  • Each year we work hard to enhance our endowed Transportation Fund through our Buy-A-Bus campaign, and this year was no exception.  We brought 164 buses filled with more than 8,000 school children to Mia for a docent or art adventure led tour.  We can be proud of the numbers of lives we touch with this program, exposing young minds to our world-class collection at Mia.

 

  • The Friends continued the tradition of providing exceptional art lectures, free to the public, September through May. The Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Fund generously supported two of these lectures.  Speakers this year were diverse as always and ranged from a White House photographer to a local art critic, a nationally recognized Native American potter and poet to an international historian on book forgeries.  Our year concludes with today’s speaker, the founding and current director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History & Culture.

 

  • Every year Friends Hospitality Committee plans luncheons after four of our lectures and I am happy to report the attendance has climbed significantly the last two years.  These luncheons provide an opportunity for us to visit with our friends and meet new people.

 

  • The Friends Newsletter does a great job updating our members about all Friends activities. Friends members continue to receive their newsletter by email, but we have enhanced its distribution by now posting it on our updated Friends page on Mia’s web site.  On the Friends web page, you will find all our upcoming events and how you can get more involved with Friends of the Institute.

Those of you who are Friends members enjoyed some special Friends Only Events.

    • In the fall, we held a Friends 101 class informing members about our organization, followed by an exclusive opportunity to view Mia’s newest acquisitions with Mia’s John E. Andrus III Curator of Prints and Drawings, Tom Rassier.
    • Once again, this year Friends offered Friends Only tours of Mia’s special exhibitions and permanent collection.  These tours are guided by curators or docents, and included the Rabblerouser and the Homebody, Without Boundaries, Egypt’s Sunken Cities, the Kunin collection and Harry Drake: A Legacy in Photography.  These tours are well received and always fill up quickly.
    • Friends Only Book Club met monthly and covered a wide range of books.  Our book club is unique in that our meetings begin with a discussion of the book, followed by a docent-led tour of art relating to the book. New this year, the book club meets in the beautiful Mia Library.  A lovely setting for a book discussion.
    • Our Friends-only annual Art and Architecture tour sold out quickly. This year’s tour on June 6th stays local as we look at the revival of mid-century modernism in Minneapolis and St. Paul.
    • The Outreach Committee continued its program with members training to be Picture People for the Art Adventure program.  Friends volunteers went into elementary school classrooms as Picture People and chaperoned the students at Mia for their guided tour.

All of this could not happen without the solid support of our Friends Operations Manager, Jackie Figerola.  Although Jackie didn’t start full time at the Friends office until October, when Art in Bloom preparations were well underway, she quickly proved herself instrumental in keeping the Friends office running smoothly and Art in Bloom on target. My sincere thanks to Jackie.

We are fortunate to have strong Friends affiliate networks in Rochester and St. Cloud.  These members help us support Mia and enjoy the many benefits of the museum through group tours of Mia’s collections and special exhibits, and lectures by Mia’s curators in their home communities.  We thank them for their important community leadership on our behalf.

This year we were fortunate to have great support in the office with two very capable Project Assistants, Kimberly Peterson and Lizzie Ginsberg.  Their contribution enabled Friends to put on a very smooth Art in Bloom. Thank you!

The Friends are privileged to work with a very helpful and dedicated Mia staff and administration.  This year we said good-bye to Kaywin Feldman, the Duncan and Nivin MacMillan Director and President of Mia, as she moved on as Director of the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.  We miss her leadership and her unwavering support of Friends and look forward to working with Mia’s next director and president. I want to thank Julianne Amendola, Mia’s Chief Advancement Officer and advisor to the Friends president, for her guidance and support during my two years as president of Friends of the Institute.

As you can tell from all that goes on here, being a Friends member is a tremendous opportunity to enjoy Mia, build friendships and be part of something that enhances our communities.  I strongly encourage you to think about joining us, if you are not already a member.

Molly Van Metre our treasurer will now present the financial report for the period ending March 31, 2019.

(The financial report is available in the Friends Office.)

Thank you, Molly.

I would now like to introduce Connie Sommers, chair of the Nominating Committee, to present the slate of officers for 2019 -2020.

Maria Eggemeyer, President

Robin Keyworth, 1st VP / President Elect

Liz Short, Research & Planning (2nd VP)

Chris Vickery, Secretary

Molly VanMetre, Treasurer

Carol Stoddart, Development Relations Chair

Lucy Hicks, Art & Architecture

Maria Reamer, Art in Bloom

Therese Blaine, Art in Bloom

Barb Champ, Centennial

Tammy Meyer, Docent Representative

Michele Byfield-Angell, Friends Only Events

Elizabeth Winga, Friends Only Events

Beverly Hauschild-Baron, Fundraiser

Mary Aamoth, Fundraiser

Jeanne Scheiderer, Historian

Kris King, Hospitality

Carol Poulson, Hospitality

Helen Leslie, Lectures

Barbara Proeschel, Lectures

Teresa Luterbach, Membership

Melanie Nelson, Membership

Laurie Fontaine-Junker, Newsletter

Sharon Secor, Newsletter

Katie Remole, Nominating

Carolyn Hartwigsen, Outreach

Jane Metcalfe, Outreach

Shelly McGinnis, Plants & Flowers

Lisa Berg, Plants & Flowers

Pat Gale, Rochester Liaison

Sharon Parham, Rochester President

Boyd Ratchye, St. Cloud Liaison

JeanMarie Burtness, Transportation

Laura Miller, Transportation

Sue Stillman, Volunteer Services

Kathryn Koessel, Advisors

Julie Holland, Advisors

Nikki Lewis, Advisors

Tracey Schaefer, Advisors

Katie Searl, Advisors

 

I need to ask the next question three times.

Are there any nominations from the floor? Again… and finally.

May I have a motion to approve the Board as presented by Connie?

Is there a second?

Any discussion?

It has been moved and seconded to accept the slate.

All in favor say “aye”.

All opposed say “nay”.

The motion carries.

Thank you, Connie for presenting to us such a terrific slate of officers.

Congratulations to the 2019-20 Friends Board of Directors

We are at the end of the 2019 Annual Meeting.

May I have a motion to adjourn the meeting?

Is there a second?

It has been moved and seconded to adjourn the Meeting.

All those in favor, say “aye”.

Opposed?

The motion carries and the meeting is adjourned. Gavel!

It has been a pleasure and privilege for me to lead this wonderful organization the past two years.  Thank you for the opportunity.

Now I would like to introduce, Mia’s Deputy Director and Chief Curator, Matthew Welch, who will introduce today’s distinguished speaker.

Please join me in welcoming Matthew to the podium.

-END-

 

FRIENDS ANNUAL REPORT 2017-2018

Katie Remole, Friends of the Institute President

Friends of the Institute has been very privileged to work with an outstanding Mia administration and staff.  We are grateful for the leadership of Kaywin Feldman, the Duncan and Nivin MacMillan Director and President of Mia, and we are thankful for the guidance of Julianne Amendola, Mia’s Chief Advancement Officer.  Their contribution to Friends cannot be overstated.

The Friends greatly appreciate our invaluable Operations Manager, Kate Smith Williamschen.  Kate was instrumental in helping Katie through her first year as Friends president.  Kate has an ever-ready smile and quick laugh that amplifies her organizational skills and ability to keep the Friends office running smoothly.

This year we were fortunate to have great support in the office with two very capable Project Assistances, Jackie Figueroa and Frannie Kuhs.  Their contribution enabled Friends to put on a very smooth Art in Bloom.  Thank you.

We are also thankful for our strong Friends affiliate groups in Rochester and St. Cloud.  These members help us support Mia through their networks of friends who enjoy the many benefits of the museum through group tours of Mia’s collection and curator lectures.  We thank them for their important community leadership on our behalf.

I now want to recognize our wise and talented past presidents.  Will you please stand when I call your name:  Carol Burton Grey, Suzanne Payne, Carolyn Dahl, and Connie Sommers.  Thank you for joining us today and thank you for your contribution to Friends.  CLAP.

Friends of the Institute had a very eventful year.  Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Two weeks ago we were in the midst of Art in Bloom. This was our 35th year celebrating art and flowers.  The event brought more than 52,000 visitors to Mia.  I want to recognize our co-chairs Lezlie Pinske and Barbara Proeschel; the Art in Bloom committee; all the volunteers, patrons and the Mia staff who make this event possible.
  • Art in Bloom was filled with energy and beauty, but the biggest star of the event was Mia’s new acquisition and Art in Bloom’s signature piece of art, Eugène Delacroix’s Still Life with Dahlias, Zinnias, Hollyhocks, and Plums.” In celebration of Friends 100th anniversary in 2022, Friends was given the opportunity to raise the funds needed to acquire this masterpiece.  Last year Patrick Noon, Mia’s curator of paintings, and the world’s leading expert on Delacroix, learned of its availability and confirmed its authenticity as a Delacroix.  It had never before been displayed publically.  Kaywin Feldman and Patrick Noon immediately thought this picture would be a perfect way for Friends to celebrate our upcoming centennial.   I am happy to announce we are well on our way to our fundraising goal, thanks to lead donations by Friends members Nivin MacMillan, Mary Agnes and Al McQuinn, Sheila Morgan, Mary and Douglas Olson, Nikki Lewis an many others,  With ongoing fundraising, we expect to reach our goal by our  Friends Centennial Celebration in 2022.
  • Each year we work hard to enhance our endowed Transportation Fund through our Buy-A-Bus campaign, and this year was no exception. We brought 121 buses filled with 5121 school children to Mia for a docent or art adventure guide led tour, and that number does not include our busiest months of May and June.  We can be proud of the numbers of lives we touch with this program, exposing young minds to our world-class collection at Mia.
  • The Friends continued the tradition of providing nine exceptional lectures, free to the public, the second Thursday of the month, September through May. The Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Fund generously support two of these lectures. Speakers this year were diverse as always, and ranged from Apollo art magazine’s editor Thomas Marks, to tattoo scholar and historian Anna Felicity Friedman.
  • The Friends monthly Newsletter Committee continues to deliver a very informative monthly online newsletter to our members. This year we added a special edition dedicated exclusively to Art in Bloom.  All tickets for Art in Bloom events were a simple click away.
  • Those of you who are Friends members enjoyed some special perks including Friends Only Events.
  • In the fall, we held a Friends 101 class informing members about our organization, followed by a behind the scenes look at rarely seen Andy Warhol prints in the Prints and Drawing Library, given by Mia’s curator of Prints and Drawings, Tom Rassier.
  • Our Friends Only Committee planned and executed five Friends only tours, including Mia’s new China Gate, highlights of Mia’s collection of jewelry and curator led tours of Eyewitness Views, I am Somali, and Horse Power. Our sixth Friends Only tour is scheduled for Tuesday June 12th at 11 AM.  Marla Kinney, Fellow in the Mia’s Prints and Drawing Department will led us through the exhibit “The Rabble-rouser and the Homebody:  Minnesota’s Elizabeth Olds and Wanda Gag”.  Please join us!
  • Friends Only Book Club met monthly for lively book discussions, docent led tours and refreshments.
  • The Outreach Committee started a new program with members becoming Picture People for the Art Adventure program. Friends volunteers went into the schools as Picture People and chaperoned the students at Mia for their guided tours.  Friends also donated art supplies to these students.
  • On Wednesday June 6, Friends will embark on the Art and Architecture tour of Washington, DC. The itinerary includes exclusive tours and receptions of great museums and government buildings, plus the trip is a great opportunity to enjoy friendships and camaraderie.

Again, this is a short list, but you can tell from all that goes on here, being a Friends member is a tremendous opportunity to enjoy the museum, build friendships and be part of something that enhances our communities.  I strongly encourage you to think about joining us, if you are not already a member.

FRIENDS ANNUAL REPORT 2015-2016

Hello Friends! 

We missed you in June. The Friends Office has had a bit of a respite this month after Art in Bloom but the planning really never stops, especially as a new board takes office July first.  But before we dive into future plans I’d like to report on our organization’s 2015-2016 accomplishments.  In May, at the Annual Meeting, I reported on the past year’s achievements.  Following is my report in its entirety for all members to read at their leisure.
I hope your sun filled days are fun filled days!

Take care,

Connie

FRIENDS ANNUAL REPORT 2015-2016
The 93rd Annual meeting of the Friends of the Institute is now in session.

One year ago we were half way through Mia’s 100th Birthday Year.  The Friends was part of this very significant celebration as the first sponsor to pledge $500,000 to Mia’s Birthday. Because of the work and dedication of Friends members, at the end of this fiscal year we will have paid off more than 4/5th of our pledge.  This accomplishment emphasizes the close connection and mutual respect we have for Mia, the staff and administration.  The expert leadership of Duncan and Nivin MacMillan Director and President, Kaywin Feldman, as well as the guidance of the Chief Advancement Officer and liaison to the Friends, Julianne Amendola, and support of Maurice Blanks and the Trustees of Mia, cannot be underestimated.  We are privileged to work in such a supportive environment.
Just two weeks ago we were hosting thousands of guests at Mia for the 33rd Art in Bloom.  To be exact, we had over 35,000 guests enjoying flowers and lectures and shopping and friendship throughout the museum for four days. This is the 3rd consecutive year attendance has been 35,000 or more.  Art in Bloom is the Friends’ largest fundraising event.  We don’t have any final financial figures; however, the work of over 300 volunteers and 160 pedestal floral artists promises to be quite successful. The money we raise enables us to run the business of the Friends.

The Friends continued the tradition of free monthly lectures, with many attracting crowds large enough for substantial overflow.  These lectures are sponsored by the generous gift of the Mark and Mary Goff Fiterman Lecture Fund.  I’m sure none of you will be disappointed with the line-up starting in September.

This school year was an outstanding year for the Friends Transportation Fund.  Friends provided a record 111 buses for students who all received a docent or Art Adventure led tour at Mia.  We were able to add buses for high school students this year and next, thanks to the 2015 Fund-a-Need donation of $20,000.  Schools represent the greater Twin Cities area and were chosen depending on their percentage of free and reduced lunches.

The Friends Children’s Programs had a unique experience when we funded a community mural project at Centro Tyrone Guzman Community Center.   It’s an active multi-generational center for the Latino community located on Chicago Avenue in Minneapolis.  Some of the Friends attended the mural dedication in September to celebrate the completion of the first phase of the project.  We look forward to the completion of the final phase in the next few months, now that the weather is milder.

The Friends Endowment for Education contributes nearly 12% of Mia’s educational department budget, Learning Innovation.  Mia’s LI department is dedicated to providing programming for children and adults.Our Friends membership stands at approximately 1,200 members.  That includes not only the greater Twin Cities but also St. Cloud and Rochester.  We are very proud of our membership and all the varied activities that we are able to offer.  Most of our communication with our Friends members is through our digital newsletter.  It is able to deliver Friends news to Friends in a timely fashion, inexpensively and efficiently.  We appreciate our members’ patience as we transition from paper to 21st century technology.
A bit earlier this year, the Friends had their Art & Architecture tour in March.  We went to Cuba!  We had a delightful trip; it was extremely educational and a lot of fun. Our group of 24 Friends felt as if we had stepped back to the 1950’s.  It was quite an experience learning first-hand about the friendly Cuban people.

The Friends Only events have given us numerous opportunities to enjoy laughter, knowledge and time with our comrades.  In the fall, we had a Friends #101 class, designed to inform Friends about our organization, followed by a tour with Nicole LaBouff focused on the large tapestries in the Fountain Court.  Later, we had a tour with curator Aaron Rio through the recently acquired Mary Griggs Burke collection.  Winter brought an evening of wine, coloring and a tour with John E. Andrus III Curator of Prints and Drawings Tom Rassieur through his delightful exhibit in the Cargill Gallery.  We also visited Mia’s Archival Library with Janice Lurie, Mia’s head librarian.  Our Friends Only committee organized docent lead pre-lecture tours prior to these monthly lectures and the ever-popular book club that includes a docent lead tour followed by a discussion and treats.

Of course, all of these exciting events could not happen without the friendly, professional help of our Office Administrator, Kate Smith.  She is the Friends liaison with our members, our Board and Mia’s staff.  I am so grateful I have the pleasure to work with her.  Please stop by the office just to say ‘hi’ and help yourself to a piece of chocolate.  If you’re not a Friend, why not join us?  Our memberships start at $45.  Become a member of this dynamic, exciting group and enjoy the friendship.

I love the job of Friends President because of you.  It is a privilege to work with such an outstanding, talented group of individuals.  Thank you sounds a bit underwhelming, but I sincerely do thank you for your support and friendship.

Connie Sommers