Campaign for Cultural Facilities salutes state leadership on historic facilities funding

July 14, 2006

Boston –The Boston Foundation today joined with its partners in the Campaign for Cultural Facilities—the Massachusetts Advocates for the Arts, Sciences & Humanities (MAASH) and the Massachusetts Cultural Council—to thank the Legislature for the establishment of the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund, which provides for unprecedented levels of support for historic sites and cultural  facilities across the Commonwealth. The funding committed by the state is expected to generate as much as $500 million over the next 10 years to strengthen the regional tourism industry, which research has determined to be driven by cultural heritage sites.

The State Senate and the House of Representatives passed the funding on July 14 over a veto by Governor Mitt Romney.  The Senate approved the veto override by a vote of 33-3 hours after the House approved the veto override by a vote of 157-0.

The Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund establishes Massachusetts as the national leader in innovative investment in cultural facilities.

 “This is a very important investment in a key sector of our economy,” said Paul S. Grogan, President and CEO of the Boston Foundation. “It will strengthen our ability to compete for tourists from across the country and around the world by honoring our region’s role as the nation’s birthplace. This farsighted achievement guarantees that we will continue to grow and develop as a world-class tourism destination.”

Among the political leaders who provided support for the funding are House Speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi and Senate President Robert Travaglini. In the House, State Rep. Daniel E. Bosley (D-North Adams), Chairman of the House Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies; Rep. Robert DeLeo (D-Winthrop), Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee and Rep. Eric Turkington (D-Falmouth) were critical to the legislative success of the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities fund.   The other key Senate leaders were Senator Therese  Murray (D-Plymouth) Chairwoman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee; Senator Jack Hart (D-S. Boston) Chairman of the Senate Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies and Senator Stan Rosenberg, President Pro Tem, (D-Amherst).

“We salute the visionary leadership of the House and Senate for recognizing that the arts, sciences, and humanities make a substantial contribution to our economy, our communities and our commonwealth,” said Dan Hunter, executive director of MAASH, “We must use every available economic development tool and the strong bipartisan support for facilities funding sends a resounding message that our cultural resources from the infrastructure for tourism, the state’s third largest industry.”

To focus the efforts of a growing consensus about the importance of making this investment, a statewide steering committee of business, civic and cultural leaders, called the Campaign for Cultural Facilities was launched.  The list of leaders follows the press release.

“Paul, Mary and I also want to thank the civic and cultural leaders who served in the Campaign for Cultural Facilities—their support was essential to the success of this campaign,” Hunter added.

Initial creation of the current legislation came after three organizations—the Boston Foundation, the Massachusetts Cultural Council and Massachusetts Advocates for the Arts, Sciences and Humanities—advocated for a secure pool of state funds to be used to maintain, renovate and expand Massachusetts’ cultural facilities. The Campaign grew out of research conducted by a task force convened by the Boston Foundation, which issued a report called Culture is our Common Wealth in 2004, which identified more than $1.1 billion in “bricks and mortar” needs over the next five years.

“It is an investment in our competitive advantage,” said Mary Kelley, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Cultural Council. “Our heritage of 300 years of arts, sciences and humanities is a resource no state can rival. It enriches the lives of those who live here and it is a compelling draw for people from across the country and around the world.”

A report entitled  Culture is Our Common Wealth  is available on the Boston Foundation website at . It includes data from the research undertaken and examples of cultural facilities that are in need of the kind of investment the current legislation will support.


The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the nation, with an endowment of over $730 million.  In 2005, the Foundation and its donors made more than $60 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and received gifts of more than $70 million.  The Foundation is made up of some 850 separate charitable funds established by donors either for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes.  The Boston Foundation also serves as a major civic leader, provider of information, convener, and sponsor of special initiatives designed to address the community’s and region’s most pressing challenges.  For more information about the Boston Foundation, visit or call 617-338-1700.


The Massachusetts Advocates for the Arts, Sciences, & Humanities (MAASH) is the statewide advocacy organization for the arts, sciences and humanities representing the cultural community throughout Massachusetts. An independent, non-profit organization, MAASH identifies significant issues of importance to the industry and works to influence legislation and public opinion. For more information visit or call 617-725-0155.


The Massachusetts Cultural Council promotes excellence, access, education and diversity in the arts, humanities and interpretive sciences, in order to improve the quality of life for all Massachusetts residents and contribute to the economic vitality of our communities. The MCC is committed to building a central place for the arts, sciences and humanities in the everyday lives of communities across the Commonwealth. The Council pursues this mission through a combination of grant programs, partnerships, and services for nonprofit cultural organizations, schools, communities, and individual artists. For more information visit or call 617-727-3668.

Members of the Campaign for Cultural Facilities

Paul Grogan, President
The Boston Foundation

Mary Kelley, Director
Mass. Cultural Council                   

Dan Hunter, Director

Jonathan Abbott
Vice President & COO
WGBH Educational Foundation

Ozzie Alvarez
Boxcar Media & Williamstown Advocate

Robert Beal
The Beal Companies

Louis Casagrande
The Children’s Museum

Deb Catania

John Drew
President & CEO
World Trade Center and Seaport Hotel

Irene Browne Grimm

Barbara Wallace Grossman

William T. Kennedy
The Standard-Times

Kent Lucken
The Citigroup Private Bank

Michael Maso
Managing Director
Huntington Theatre Company

Mary Jo Meisner
Vice President for Communications, Community Relations and Public Affairs
The Boston Foundation

Jill Medvedow
Institute for Contemporary Art
James Sachs Plaut Director

Peter Nessen

Dusty Rhodes

Dr. Robert Rosenthal

Malcolm L. Sherman

Susan Solomont

Helen Spaulding

David Starr
Springfield Republican

Joe Thompson
Executive Director

Kendall Wallace
Lowell Sun

David Willard
Vice President
Cape Cod Five Cents Bank