Libra Foundation makes big 10-year, $750,000 commitment to the Cumberland County Civic Center

The newly renovated Cumberland County Civic Center. (BDN photo by Troy R. Bennett)

The newly renovated Cumberland County Civic Center. (BDN photo by Troy R. Bennett)

As a way of helping repay the nearly $34 million bond taken out to renovate the Cumberland County Civic Center, the venue is selling “founding partnerships” at $75,000 per year, with minimum 5-year commitments.

These partnerships buy exclusive access to the civic center’s new luxury boxes, among other perks, I presume. Today, the civic center announced its first founding partner, and it’s a doozy.

The late millionaire Elizabeth Noyce’s philanthropic Libra Foundation has signed on for a 10-year commitment, at a total of $750,000, and is giving its luxury suite dibs back to the civic center to be offered to local nonprofits and community groups.

The move builds on Noyce’s 1995 donation of $1.3 million to the civic center so the venue could invest in capital improvements without selling naming rights to pay for them.

According to today’s announcement, the civic center will now “develop and administer a program such that use of the suite will be equitably shared for the express benefit of children and citizens,” and will be hereon out called the “Cumberland County Corner.”

Some statements about the $750,000 commitment, starting with foundation President Craig Denekas:

Libra Foundation is very pleased to continue a strong tradition of support for the
civic center established by Mrs. Noyce. We wanted to set this course for the next 10 years so that the public will have an ongoing opportunity to enjoy this sort of experience in their new Civic Center.

And now from Neal Pratt, chairman of the civic center board of trustees:

The Civic Center has a long history with Mrs. Noyce and the Libra Foundation, and we are very pleased to continue with that tradition. Libra’s goal in making this suite available to disadvantaged youth, charitable organizations, and other non-profit entities is reflective of the Civic Center’s community-oriented mission. It’s what we’re all about.

The civic center welcomed in reporters to the newly spiffed up venue Monday, and my colleagues, Kathleen Pierce and Troy R. Bennett were there. Check out their coverage of the tour by clicking here.

The civic center also signed a fresh five-year lease deal with its anchor tenant, the Portland Pirates professional hockey team, after half a year of somewhat ugly, off-and-on negotiations. Read my coverage of that whole thing by clicking here.

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Seth Koenig

About Seth Koenig

Seth has nearly a decade of professional journalism experience and writes about the greater Portland region.