Media Room


Governor Kate Brown
Historic Gift Portland Art Museum
January 21, 2020

Good morning everyone! 

Arlene Schnitzer has been the heart and soul of Portland’s arts community for half a century. 

And she has recognized that arts are not a luxury, they are a necessity. They benefit our state in many ways.

Access to the arts builds the community and culture that make Oregon a great state to call home.

We know that communities with a vibrant cultural scene are more desirable to live in, have greater economic stability, and attract a more diverse and educated workforce.

Students who participate in rigorous arts programs have higher test scores, are more likely to graduate high school and college, and are more likely to develop vital analytical and critical‐thinking skills.

Art expands our minds, reflects our perspectives, and enriches our lives.

It’s a universal language for our society’s most diverse and complex issues.

And for those reasons, we must fund local art and artists.

In her role as philanthropist and art patron, Arlene Schnitzer has forever changed the cultural landscape of Oregon. 

There is no law, no requirement for those successful in business to give back to their community, to leave the world a little better than it was when they arrived.

And yet, Arlene Schnitzer does just that. She has been more than generous to this great state she calls home, investing in cultural pieces and institutions that Oregonians can and will enjoy for generations. 

By investing in these treasured institutions, she is investing in a better future for everyone.

And for that, we are forever grateful.

On behalf of the entire state of Oregon, Arlene Schnitzer, we thank you.