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Clay Center board hears update on budget targets

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Five months into its fiscal year, the Clay Center board of directors learned Thursday that most revenue sources were well above the halfway point to meeting their budgets.

There were a couple of exceptions.

"The museum -- it's still struggling with attendance," said Judy Wellington, president of the Clay Center. "We made up some ground in November, but not enough to make up for losses."  

Since July, the eclectic mixture of Clay Center Performances, ranging from rockers Daughtry to comedian Wayne Brady, received positive reviews from the press and the attendees, Wellington said.

Although ahead of the same period last year, the $417,102 received from the sale of performance tickets is $16,022 under budget. Reduced expenses, though, resulted in a net of about $58,500 in that account.

Wellington singled out Lauren Francis, head of sales, calling her "one of the unsung heroes of the Clay Center."

The center has had a 47 percent increase in money from renting its space for performances "and many, many, many weddings," Wellington said, adding that accompanying catering revenue also was doing very well.

Reporting for the development committee, Andy Cook said 60 percent of the yearly $2.3 operating budget has been met, 65 percent of the major gifts' budget of $431,00 has been reached, and money pledged for sponsorships for the year "has been fantastic," coming in at 73 percent of the $455,000 budgeted for the 2012-2013 fiscal year.

Revenues from memberships are lagging at 35 percent of the $238,100 planned for, but Cook said a push for new membership is underway. Twenty-eight of the 54 board members have given to the Clay Center toward a goal of $500,000, and seven of 21 members on the advisory board have contributed to its goal of $75,000.

Wellington said later that most donations are made in December. "We are where we need to be for now," she said.

The board approved acquisitions, mostly gifts, to the Clay Center art collection. They consisted of three mixed media work on paper by Charleston native W. Lee Savage; eight bromoil or carbro prints by Summersville photographer Jurgen Lorenzen, purchased by the Charles B. and Judith W. Stacy Fund of the Greater Kanawha Valley Foundation; a George Snyder acrylic on canvas of PVC pipe given by Dwight Foley in honor of Wellington; and a 6-foot by 3-foot oil on canvas by Charleston artist Paula Clendenin, which was donated by Dr. Gina M. Puzzuoli. Snyder is a native of Charleston who now lives in Florida.      

Members of the board of directors include:

Phyllis Arnold, Charles M. Avampato, Robert Berthold, Jr., Ellen Cappellanti, Kelly L. Castleberry III, Elizabeth E. Chilton, Andrew B. Cooke, Stephen P. Dexter, Robert E. Douglas, Fonda Elliot, John Elliot, Horace W. Emery, Harry H. Esbenshade III, Alex Franklin, Shawn P. George, Michael R. Graney, David Haden, David J. Hardy, Tom Heywood, Eric Iskra, Lloyd G. Jackson II, Mike John, Mayor Danny Jones, J. Thomas Jones, Laurance Jones III, Melvin Jones, Stephen E. Kawash, Virginia King, Thomas Kittredge, Ken Kleeman, Jane Kopp, Charles W. Loeb, Jr., Edward H. Maier, Gayle C. Manchin, Sallie McClaugherty, Kyle Mork, Madeleine Nibert, Roger Nicholson, Charles Patton, David Ramsey, Sharon Rowe, Sue Sergi, Del. Douglas Skaff, Jr., Reed Spangler, John Strickland, Andrew K. Teeter, Gayle Twigger-Shaw, Grace Vandecruze-Heyliger, Richard M. Wallace, The Reverend Matthew Watts, Steve Wehrle, Joan Weisberg, Judith Wellington and Joseph B. Wollenberger.

Reach Rosalie Earle at earle@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5115.


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