Hester Coucke Exhibitions Endowment Fund

August 18 – September 24, 2022

Honor the legacy of retiring Curator, Hester Coucke, and provide lasting support for the public exhibition program

On her first day of retirement, October 1, 2022, Hester Co-Hosted our Art for the Heart Gala Benefit for The Arts Center with Mike McInally.

Before she came on stage this warm up message was shared with guests attending the event.

YOU can help celebrate Hester Coucke’s retirement in September of 2022 with a gift to a new endowment fund that honors her 31-year-service to The  Arts Center and our community! 

Hester started her tenure at The Arts Center as a Sunday volunteer. Over  the next 31 years, she served as Youth Education Coordinator, Manager of  the ArtShop, and then full-time Curator for Public Exhibitions—where she  drew upon her knowledge of art history and her Master’s degree training  from the Universiteit van Amsterdam. 

As Curator, she managed countless art exhibitions, working with hundreds  of local, regional, statewide, and nationally-known artists. She also relied  on the expertise, perspective and sweat-equity of over 75 active community  members of the volunteer Exhibition Committee, who helped curate and hang public exhibitions that connected art with science, technology, and current social issues, while continually refreshing community favorites like the annual Howland Community OPEN.  

I’ve loved every minute of my time at The Arts Center and have seen our exhibitions become more popular and inclusive. Collaboration was a central theme and many different individual and groups worked with us on projects  environmental, historical, and cultural, as well as those celebrating youth, other-abled, underrepresented, and traditional media creators. Every time I learned a lot together with our audience

Hester Coucke

The Arts Center Board of Directors and Endowment Fund Board’s are honoring Hester’s legacy by establishing the Hester Coucke Exhibitions Endowment Fund. This fund will allow her successor to build on her efforts to connect with emerging artists, share new perspectives in innovative exhibitions, build new audiences, and promote equitable access to the visual arts. Each year, one art show will honor Hester Coucke’s legacy by name. 

Thanks to generous lead donors we exceeded an initial fund goal of $30,000 to establish the Hester Coucke Exhibitions Endowment Fund!  

Our goal is to raise $2,000 for each year of Hester’s 31 years of service for a $62,000 campaign goal!

To ensure the success of the Hester Coucke Exhibitions Endowment Fund Campaign, we rely on your support to honor her substantial contribution to our community’s cultural landscape.