Foundation Awards Its Largest Grant

Pictured from left are Lorraine Diggs, Chautauqua Region Community Foundation board member; Rex McCray, CRCF board vice-president; Tory Irgang, CRCF executive director; Kathleen Eads; Reg Lenna executive director and Len Barry, Reg Lenna marketing and communications director.

The Chautauqua Region Community Foundation recently awarded its largest, single grant to the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts.

The grant closed the final funding gap to complete the renovation of six of the seven buildings surrounding the historic theater.

“The completion of this renovation is an incredible milestone for the Reg,” said Tory Irgang, CRCF executive director. “Our support represents an impressive milestone for the Foundation in making a single grant of this size. We are grateful to the generous giving our Fund for the Region receives that allows us to address emerging needs in our community, such as this.”

The renovation included complete overhauls of seven spaces including lobby/concessions/box office, 3rd on 3rd Gallery, Bill’s Place — home of the 1878 Buffalo Bill Billboard, WRFA offices and studios, administrative offices, a pre-function space and library, and a media arts studio.

The Community Foundation’s grant followed significant funding for the renovation from the following: New York state’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative; Ralph C. Sheldon Foundation; Gebbie Foundation; and Lenna Foundation.

“The Reg plays a critical role in our region’s economic success as a downtown destination and leader in programming,” Irgang said. “Our board of directors is honored to be able to collaborate with other funders to support this effort.”

In 2018, the foundation awarded more than $3.2 million to the community in the form of grants and scholarships. Throughout its 40-year history, it has awarded over $55.8 million.

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