Valero Energy Corporation has committed $4 million to the San Antonio Children’s Museum’s capital campaign, becoming the second-largest donor to date in the museum’s plan for relocation and development of a new state-of-the art facility. Valero’s contribution will fund exhibits dedicated to increasing the science, technology, engineering and math competency of children from birth through age 10.
“Valero is a longtime supporter of the arts and culture in San Antonio, as well as math and science education,” said Valero Chairman and CEO Bill Klesse. “By supporting the museum’s new location on Broadway, Valero will have helped enhance several important icons along the Broadway corridor, the San Antonio River and in downtown, and will help the Children’s Museum in particular create a developmental resource that will help the city meet and exceed its education goals.”
Valero’s generous donation brings the capital campaign to 70 percent of its $45.7 million goal. Following Charles Butt’s lead gift of $20 million, other major contributions include $2 million from Harvey Najim and the Najim Family Foundation, $2 million from the Ewing-Halsell Foundation and $1 million from the Goldsbury Foundation
“The San Antonio Children’s Museum has been incredibly fortunate to receive such substantial gifts, and Valero’s generosity adds to the momentum,” said Vanessa Lacoss Hurd, Executive Director of SACM.
Valero’s gift elevates the capital campaign to within 30 percent of its goal. “Although the momentum is strong, we are not yet at 100 percent,” said Lacoss Hurd, adding “The confidence contributions like these provide will be essential in ongoing and future conversations with other philanthropic individuals, companies and foundations whose priorities include early childhood education. Such community confidence puts us that much closer to delivering a premier educational learning facility for San Antonio’s youngest citizens.”
The Children’s Museum master plan calls for nearly 30,000 square feet of exhibits, a large outdoor exploration area ample parking and a cafe with outdoor seating. The master plan creates a facility that allows for additional programming that further aligns with curriculum representative of SA2020 goals— San Antonio’s community-wide vision of the future.
“I’m so proud that Valero is helping to lead the way in supporting the Museum’s capital campaign and new facility,” said Kirstin Silberschlag, a managing counsel at Valero and a board member of the San Antonio Children’s Museum. “Valero’s ongoing commitment to San Antonio and to enhancing the lives of children goes hand-in-hand with our mission at the Museum.”
The San Antonio Children’s Museum intends to break ground on the new facility, which will be located across from Lion’s Field on Broadway at Mulberry, in 2013, with doors opening to the public in 2015. The current museum offers a wide variety of early literacy, science, health and art programs to develop innovative thinkers capable of meeting the challenges of the 21st century. The new facility will make order-of-magnitude expansion and enhancement of these early childhood education priorities possible.
About the San Antonio Children’s Museum
The San Antonio Children's Museum (SACM) was founded by a group of dedicated volunteers who were committed to building a community space devoted to early childhood development. Since its founding in 1995, SACM has worked to carry out its mission of growing minds, connecting families and transforming communities through joyful learning and discovery. As a premier educational resource, we develop innovative thinkers capable of meeting the challenges of the 21st century.