The Chattanooga History Center on Monday announced it is the recipient of a challenge grant from the Lyndhurst Foundation, where all individual and corporate contributions of any amount will be matched dollar-for-dollar for the remainder of 2013 – up to $250,000. The Chattanooga History Center will use the challenge grant to encourage individuals, families and corporations to join one of Center’s annual giving clubs that support the Center’s ongoing capital campaign, which has raised more than $8.5 million of its $10.5 million fund-raising goal.
“With this challenge grant from the Lyndhurst Foundation, we are one step closer to the completion of Chattanooga’s next big idea – the Chattanooga History Center,” said Cannon and Rick Montague, board members of the Chattanooga History Center and co-chairs of its capital campaign. “More importantly, the challenge grant will help create a sense of community ownership for the Chattanooga History Center by encouraging the general public to support this effort that will share our city’s amazing story, starting from where we began to how we became a city reborn, reimagined and revitalized.”
Through its generosity and leadership, the Lyndhurst Foundation has played a pivotal role in shaping Chattanooga’s history, most recently by paving the way for the revitalization and transformation of downtown Chattanooga that also brought several world-class attractions to the community.
“The Lyndhurst Foundation focuses its resources on supporting projects that will enhance and enrich the natural, educational, cultural and urban environment of Chattanooga, and we believe the work being done by Ralph Appelbaum Associates and the Chattanooga History Center will create one of the most innovative and creative history museums that will be unlike anything we have even seen before in this community.”
Construction is currently underway on the 19,500-square-foot museum, which is located at the Aquarium Plaza and scheduled to open in late 2013. The Center has enlisted Ralph Appelbaum Associates – one of the most creative museum design firms in the world – to help design and build an innovative exhibit space that will use storytelling and the power of the narrative to engage visitors as they explore Chattanooga's rich and fascinating history and inspire them to become the next generation of leaders that will drive civic action and shape our common future for years to come.
Ralph Appelbaum Associates has successfully used this approach to captivate visitors across the country with their award-winning design work with many of the nation’s top museums, including the U.S. Holocaust Museum, The Country Music Hall of Fame, The NASCAR Museum, The National World War I Museum and the Newseum.
Rick Montague said, “With the gracious support of the Lyndhurst Foundation, we now have the opportunity to raise an additional $500,000 that will push our overall fund-raising efforts past the $9 million mark.”
Officials with the Chattanooga History Center hope to reach the full match of the challenge grant through its March membership drive for the Chattanooga Club. Launched last year, the Chattanooga Club is an annual giving program tailored for individuals and families who want to support the Chattanooga History Center and its capital campaign. The Chattanooga Club has multiple membership levels, including Platinum ($1,000 annual donation); Gold ($500 annual donation); Silver ($250 annual donation) and Bronze ($100 annual donation). The museum has also launched an online portal at http://chattanoogahistory.org/chattclub where donors can contribute directly to the campaign and qualify for the Lyndhurst Foundation match.
Erika Kaufman Powell, 25, recently joined the Chattanooga Club as a Bronze Level supporter. She said, “I’m excited about becoming a founding member of the Chattanooga Club and becoming a part of this important project that will preserve the Chattanooga story so visitors and residents can learn about our many pasts and how they can get engaged to help shape our future. More importantly, my $100 donation will actually become a $200 donation thanks to the matching grant from the Lyndhurst Foundation.”
The Lyndhurst Foundation’s challenge grant will also apply to donations from all corporations, foundations and other business entities. These organizations can become a founding member of the Chief John Ross Society by making a three-year commitment to supporting the Chattanooga History Center and its capital campaign. To learn more about the Chief John Ross Society and its membership benefits, please visit https://chattanoogahistory.org/johnross.
For further information on the Chattanooga History Center and its ongoing capital campaign, please visit www.chattanoogahistory.org.