T h e U k r a i n i a n M u s e u m
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Annual Meeting of The Ukrainian Museum (June 2001)
"We are very close to achieving our goal. Our attorney is reviewing the contract with the builder and as soon as all the details are ironed out we will sign it," said Olha Hnateyko, President of the Board of Trustees of The Ukrainian Museum, referring to institution's new building project. Speaking during the Museum's Annual Meeting, which was held on June 3rd , Mrs. Hnateyko gave an upbeat, positive report on the status of the building project, that was well received by the audience.
More than 100 people attended the Annual Meeting, an event, which provides a forum for the review of the Museum's financial status, as well as an accounting of its activities in the past year. The Meeting offers a platform for Museum members and friends to voice their concerns on various matters pertinent to the institution and the opportunity for members to vote on issues, as well as for proposed candidates to the Board of Trustees. This year's Meeting was chaired by John Luchechko and recorded by Katria Czerwoniak.
The subject of the new building has been a general topic of interest to the Museum community for many years. Held in abeyance for a time due to lack of funds, the project was restructured in the early part of 2000 with the idea of building a more modest museum facility, thereby scaling down the cost of construction. In December 2000 the project was brought back to its original architectural concept and fully revitalized upon the receipt of a major gift of $2.5 million and a $1 million Challenge Grant, from California entrepreneur and his wife, Eugene and Daymel Shklar.
In her address during the Meeting, Mrs. Hnateyko spoke about the events which led to the presentation of this magnanimous gift. She said that for a period of time the donors closely examined the structure, workings and the essence of the Museum, in effect giving all aspects of the institution serious thought and consideration. She said she believes that the donors have found the Ukrainian Museum worthy of their help because of its long record of meritorious work, its accountability, and the potential to be continually beneficial to both the Ukrainian and the overall communities.
The Board President said that precisely because of the Museum's long standing respected reputation, another donor, Self Reliance New York Federal Credit Union, chose to give the institution a gift of $500,000 to the Building Fund. This gift was presented to the Museum during the 50th anniversary celebration of Self Reliance New York, this Spring.
To the donors of these magnificent gifts Mrs. Hnateyko expressed the deep gratitude and appreciation of the Board, the Administration, the staff and the entire Museum family. She thanked all the Museum members and friends as well, for their constant and most generous support over the last twenty-five years. Their care sustained the institution on a daily basis, and because of this the Museum was able to grow and develop. She particularly emphasized the tremendous financial and moral help received from the regional councils and branches of the Ukrainian National Women's League of America, the Museum's founding organization.
Mrs. Hnateyko also brought up a very important matter - the future financial security of the Museum. "When we build the new facility we also have to make sure that there will be funds available to maintain the building and cover the operational costs of the institution, year after year. She explained that precisely because of these financial requirements an Endowment Fund with a goal of $10 million will be opened at the Museum.
The Board President spoke about the involvement of young people in the Museum in the past year, citing two events organized by groups of young individuals - one a lecture in the Museum in conjunction with an exhibition, the other a fund raiser for the new building project. She pointed out how important it is for young people in our community to take an active part in the life of the Museum, because eventually it will pass into their stewardship and that of their progeny.
In her report to the assembly, Maria Shust, Director of Museum, spoke about the work of the Museum, specifically about those aspects which constitute the day-to-day responsibilities - conservation, care of collections, exhibition planning and maintenance, education and research. She also detailed the large network of activities - educational programs, community events, and fund raisers - which are part of the Museum's agenda. She described the past year and a half in the life of the Museum as "historical" in terms of events that transpired, referring to the large donations and the Challenge Grant, and the fact that the year 2001 marks the Museum's 25th anniversary.
In particular, she gave a comprehensive report on the state of the institution by enumerating many of these activities. She described new acquisitions to the fine arts collection, among them numerous watercolors and drawings of artist Mykola Krychevsky, and individual works by such artists as Alexander Archipenko, Oleksa Hryshchenko, Lubomyr Hutsaliuk and Jacques Hnizdovsky.
Many excellent examples of Ukrainian embroidery - parts of folk costumes and rushnyky (ritual cloths) from the central regions of Ukraine were added to the folk art collection. In addition to many photographs, slides and documents, the Archives were enriched by documents of important historical value, namely the archive of the Philadelphia Branch of the Brotherhood of Veterans of the 1st Ukrainian Division of the Ukrainian National Army.
The Director spoke about the Museum's exhibition program, citing several memorable exhibits in the year 2000 and during the first half of 2001, among them: The Creative Legacy of Vasyl Hryhorovych Krychevsky, Pysanka, Safeguarding an Ancient Tradition, Exhibition of Works of Halyna Mazepa and the one which opened recently - Three Generations of Cholodny Artists.
In conclusion Ms. Shust thanked Eugene and Daymel Shklar, as well as Self Reliance New York, for their most generous donations, for having faith in the Museum's mission and trust in the ability of its leadership and staff to carry it through. She thanked all Museum members and friends, volunteers and staff for their hard work and dedication.
Every year the Museum publishes an Annual Report, which is distributed to the members attending the Annual Meeting and later sent to all members as part of the privileges of their membership. The Annual Report contains in detail the review of the work and activities, which took place in the institution during that year. The text is supplemented with photographs, thereby creating an important factual record for the historical annals of the Museum. Provided also is a roster of current members and a financial section, which lists donors and the amounts of their donations, as well as financial statements.
Among those present at the Annual Meeting was Iryna Kurowyckyj, president of the Ukrainian National Women's League of America, Inc., the founding organization of the Museum. She reaffirmed UNWLA's commitment to continue the generous support its members provide to the institution and said she looks forward to the start of the construction of the new building in a very short time.
The state of the Museum's finances was presented by Dr.Yar Mociuk, who holds the post of treasurer on the Board of Trustees. He urged those present to review the financial accounts in the Annual Report. Wasyl Sosiak affirmed the veracity, accuracy and competence in the Museum's financial accounting, based on the review of the books by the Audit Committee.
During the Annual Meeting five individuals were elected to fill vacant slots on the Board of Trustees by those present and eligible to vote. Members to Board are elected to a three-year term of office. The Board, which is the governing body of the Museum, is comprised of twenty-five people, each elected to a three year term on a staggered basis.
The new roster of the Board of Trustees of The Ukrainian Museum is as follows:
The Executive Board: Olha Hnateyko, president; Iryna Kurowyckyj, Tatiana Tershakovec and Maria Tomorug - vice presidents; Dr. Yar Mociuk, treasurer; Katria Czerwoniak and Orysia Woloszyn - secretaries; Orest Glut, Andrey Hankevych and Roman Hawrylak - members-at-large.
Anna Alyskewycz, Ulana Baczynskyj, Sophia Hewryk, Ulana Kobzar, Lidia Krushelnytsky, Andrew Lencyk, Zenon Masnyj, Rostislav Milanytch, Maria Pazuniak, Maria Polanskyj, Roma Shuhan, Olga Stawnychy, Marta Skorupsky, Oksana Trytyak and Ireneus Yurchuk. Members of the Audit Committee: Wasyl Sosiak - chair; Nadia Cwiach, Ihor Hayda, Yaroslawa Luchechko and Wolodymyr Magun.
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