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$5 million gift from Kay Family Foundation supports planned Center for the Arts

December 7, 2011
Architectural rendering of planned Center for the Arts.

Architectural rendering of planned Center for the Arts.

The Kay Family Foundation (KFF), based in Orange County, Calif., has announced a $5 million gift to Chapman University, which includes $4 million for the university’s planned 1,100-seat Center for the Arts.  The gift is designed to transform the proposed $64 million Center for the Arts into a technology-enabled and globalized-program arts center, the first of its kind in the nation.  The other $1 million will be designated for other campus purposes still to be determined.

“The Kay Family Foundation’s gift will enable our students and faculty to collaborate, physically and electronically, with fellow students and colleagues across the world.  Its goal is to equip the Center with state-of-the-art technology and streaming capabilities, so that Chapman can simulcast performances and performing arts collaborations with counterparts around the globe,” said William Hall, Ph.D., the founding dean of Chapman’s Center for the Arts. 

James L. Doti, Ph.D., president of Chapman University, added, “Just imagine if we could present our Economic Forecast to an audience here in Orange County while simulcasting it live to our MBA students in Prague.  That’s an exciting possibility.”

Through a long-term partnership spanning more than 20 years, the Kay Family Foundation has previously supported several other initiatives and programs at Chapman University.  KFF is the founding sponsor of Chapman’s Richard Watson Asian Studies Distinguished Speaker Series, to be launched Feb. 9, 2012, with the scheduled appearance of Ambassador Stapleton Roy, as well as the Getty Music Equipment Grant.  KFF has also funded the digital music technology for the Oliphant Hall building campaign.

“The global presence of arts and culture provides the humanistic foundation for a balanced, harmonious and interconnected world.  The technological marvels of this century have set the groundwork to allow this humanistic vision to be realized,” said Steeve Kay, founding chairman of the Kay Family Foundation. 

President Doti added, “Coming from a visionary family with roots in Burma and China, Steeve Kay arrived in California in pursuit of the American dream.  Having overcome hardships and challenges, the family came to realize that goal by defining their own dream, one that seeks to promote and foster impact-driven innovation to benefit mankind.  I want to express our immense gratitude to the Kay Family Foundation for their transformational gift, not only to Chapman University and our community, but to a worldwide audience.”

The Kay Family Foundation is a U.S. private charitable foundation. The Foundation’s mission is to promote and foster impact-driven innovation through its four pillars: faith/values, entrepreneurship/education, medical/healthcare and arts/culture.

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