Burgum challenge grant: done

Back on December 15, we made a big announcement: we received a $300,000 donation from the Katherine Kilbourne Burgum Trust along with a $200,000 challenge grant from the Burgum family. For us to receive the challenge grant funds, we needed to meet the challenge by December 31 and raise an equal amount from the community.

And we did it! Totally nailed it. As of the end of the year, 78 donors had stepped up and given a total of $250,000, guaranteeing us the challenge match funds. Most importantly, though, it put us over the fund raising goal we needed to reach to begin construction on the Katherine Kilbourne Burgum Center for Creativity. That’s right. Construction on the Center – a facility that will continue and expand on the services provided by the Creative Arts Studio at Clara Barton Elementary – should begin in the next few weeks. The Center will be completed and ready for use by this fall.

In a release issued on Friday, our director, Colleen Sheehy, had this to say: “What a holiday it was with the phenomenal outpouring of generosity from so many people, businesses, and foundations who responded to the Burgum family challenge. I’m so thankful to the Burgums and to everyone who came through in such a short period of time for this match. Now the Center will become a reality that will benefit our youth and the whole community.”

From the same release: “This is a tremendous example of the impact that can be made when people come together,” said entrepreneur and philanthropist Doug Burgum, one of Katherine Kilbourne Burgum’s three children. “Because of the generosity of so many individuals, our community will benefit for years and years to come. On behalf of the Burgum family, ‘thank you’ to everyone who has helped make the dream of a Center for Creativity a reality.” James Burgum, entrepreneur and grandson of Katherine Kilbourne Burgum, added: “We were inspired to make the challenge grant alongside the Katherine Kilbourne Burgum Trust gift as a way to honor my late father, Brad Burgum, and his love of the arts that was shared by my grandmother K.”

So, what happens now? In the coming weeks, we’ll throw a groundbreaking celebration where we’ll formally kick off the construction project. Following that, we’ll be launching a grassroots fund raising campaign to raise money for energy-saving upgrades, an art installation for donor recognition, furnishings, equipment, and other features. Also, we’re still raising funds for the naming of the Robert Kurkowski Ceramics Studio.

Once construction begins on the Center, we’ll keep you posted with photos and facts. In the meantime, let’s get building!