Endowment Fund

Historic Endevors

The Great Lakes and events in history have challenged the peoples of this region for centuries.  The Native American tribes, early explorers and voyageurs, lumbermen, schooner sailors, shipbuilders, submariners, our present day racing and recreational sailors, freighter crews, and Navy and Coast Guard sailors have all been tested and answered the challenges in their own way.

At three significant times in its history, this community stepped up to create, build, and expand this remarkable museum.  NOW, we are called to ensure that this museum survives—and thrives.

This endowment fund began in 2007 with a challenge from Terry Growcock, the former Chairman and CEO of The Manitowoc Company.  Terry and Jo Growcock generously committed $100,000, challenging the Board of Trustees and this community to raise an additional $50,000 over the next year.

Given that impetus, the museum’s trustees, members, and supporters stepped forward.  Especially significant gifts were made by The Peter G. Horton Charitable Trust and the William H. Richardson Estate.   The Walter and Charlotte Kohler Charitable Trust made  a generous gift of $50,000.  The West Foundation issued a challenge pledge of $150,000 over three years if the museum raises $300,000

With pledge payments to date, the endowment now stands at slightly more than $300,000.   Meeting the West Foundation’s challenge will grow the fund by an additional $300,000.

The Gift of Opportunity

The West Foundation and Frank G. and Frieda K. Brotz Family Foundation have each committed to contributions of $150,000  over three years  to the museum’s operating fund.   Thanks to their wisdom, our operational needs through 2012 are met; we are free to focus on the endowment goal.  We have a  once in a lifetime opportunity to reach our endowment goal of $2 million by 2013!

You Can Create History

Great Lakes history did not end with the age of lumber schooners or with World War II shipbuilding.  Each of us creates history by answering the challenges of our times. 

Please join those who have already given so generously.  Only with your help can the museum continue to exist as the vibrant, prestigious institution it is.

The museum is relying on you to meet the challenge with us.  Please join the others who have already stepped forward!

For more information about the Endowment Fund, please view our Brochure.