July 12, 2017

Burbank Arts for All Foundation hosted a small gathering at Woodbury University to celebrate the impact of arts education and the leadership of Carrie Brown and Bob Mohler, Foundation Board of Directors Chair and Vice Chair for the past four years.

Executive Director of the Foundation, Trena Pitchford, welcomed more than 100 guests to the evening, including Foundation donors, volunteers, and partners, as well as BUSD Board of Education Vice President Dr. Roberta Reynolds and member Steve Frintner, administrators, and teachers. Also in attendance were Burbank City officials including Vice Mayor Emily Gabel-Luddy, City Council members Jess Talamantes and Bob Frutos, Burbank City Treasurer, Debbie Kukta, and representatives from the offices of Congressman Adam Schiff, State Senator Anthony Portantino, State Assemblymember Laura Friedman, and LA County Supervisor Kathryn Barger.

The Foundation highlighted arts education programs funded at Luther Burbank Middle School, which recently was recognized by the state of California as a Gold Ribbon School, receiving additional designations for Exemplary Arts and Career Technical Education programs. Luther Principal Dr. Oscar Macias spoke to the guests about his firsthand knowledge of the impact the arts have on student learning. He thanked the Foundation for the history of support to the school, including theatre, sound system upgrades, many instruments for the band program, theatre integration for English Language Development students, culinary arts, drawing and photography with Wacom tablets, media arts, and more recently the Poetry Book Project and investments in a new instrumental strings program that will launch this school year.

Former Co-Chair of the Board of Directors, BUSD Alumni parent and CEO of mOcean, Craig Murray, lead a toast to the leadership of Carrie and Bob recognizing their extraordinary impact and dedication to the Foundation’s mission and vision. He stated, “I’ve been in awe of your absolutely tireless dedication to our cause, working alongside Trena, soliciting donors, attending BUSD meetings, participating in the Annenberg Foundation’s Alchemy Leadership Training, initiating new governance policies and all the while inspiring 22 equally passionate fellow board members to keep raising the bar in support of arts education in Burbank.”

In their remarks, Carrie and Bob thanked the crowd of supporters for their donations, volunteerism and guidance over their four year tenure.  They recommitted their continued volunteerism as members of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors and reconfirmed the Foundation’s commitment to continue to  work with BUSD, principals and teachers to increase support for creativity and innovation for EVERY student in Burbank’s public schools. Bob expressed that the Foundation is interested in funding larger programs in partnership with the District and hopes to find a permanent home to grow the Foundation’s service to the Burbank community. They announced that their successors, as Co-Chairs of the Board of Directors, are Jill Vander Borght and Tom Vice.

Pitchford mentioned future Foundation programs including the inspirational relaunch of their community outreach programs on Wednesday, September 6th and their 5th annual Secret Art Show on Saturday September 30th. She invited guests to a benefit night of comedy with Fritz Coleman at the Ice House in Pasadena on Sunday, August 6th.

THANK YOU to all of our donors, volunteers and partners, whether you were at the gathering or there in spirit! Because of your donations, your support, your guidance, and your gift of time and attention – we are making a difference. Because of you, we can give more to invest in arts education, we can continue important advocacy and community outreach programs and we can connect arts education in our schools to career pathways in Burbank’s creative industries through our Creative Circles Forums. 

More information about the Foundation’s recent impact is available by clicking this link

OR

You can leisurely read through the 11 year history of our impact by clicking this link.

Here are photos captured by Ross Benson of myBurbank.com