The Palmetto Bank of South Carolina has recently completed its $250,000 endowment pledge to Spartanburg Art Museum (SAM) in Spartanburg, SC, for the perpetuation of its nearly 800-piece permanent art collection. The pledge was made six years ago in honor of Les and Betty McMillan.
Les McMillan is a respected and honored patron of arts in Spartanburg, having served on the Board of Trustees for Spartanburg Art’s Council for many years and the Spartanburg Art Museum Board of Trustees. Also, he was on the local Palmetto Bank Advisory Board for many years. He is a retired architect with McMillan Pazdan Smith. It was through McMillan’s service that the endowment was secured.
“On behalf of SAM and the entire art community in Spartanburg, we are literally forever grateful to The Palmetto Bank for its generous support,” SAM Board of Trustees President Chris Kennedy said. “It is through gifts such as this that the visual arts in Spartanburg are guaranteed a home now and for the years to come.” Newly welcomed Executive Director of SAM Elizabeth Goddard added, “The preservation and growth of our collection would not be possible without the incredibly generous support of benefactors such as Palmetto Bank. Its support is a true gift to our community that offers ample opportunities for the public to see and learn about the diverse works of art created by our region’s most beloved fine artists.”
The Palmetto Bank Endowed Permanent Collection is a central element at SAM, with the museum’s most-noted piece of art—Robert Henri’s painting “The Lady with the Red Hair”—hanging in the museum’s entrance. Other works of art have come from accomplished artists from around the world. SAM has continuous art exhibits at Chapman Cultural Center in Spartanburg, and the artists range from those with world acclaim, such as Andy Warhol and Norman Rockwell, to artists based in the nation, The South, South Carolina, and the Upstate. It also has an extensive teaching program and outreach program known as COLORS that provides art exposure to disadvantaged inner-city children.
“The Palmetto Bank has a solid history of supporting the arts throughout South Carolina,” Rob Hrubala, Senior Vice President at The Palmetto Bank in Spartanburg, said. “We believe the arts add value to a community and the return on investment can be measured in both dollars and quality of life. Spartanburg Art Museum’s permanent collection is a fine example of building a worthy and notable program that ensures the visual arts’ importance in the fabric of life for Spartanburg’s citizens.”
In 2007, The Palmetto Bank received the Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Award by the SC Arts Commission. The award is given annually to arts organizations, patrons, artists and businesses that exhibit leadership and innovation in their arts contributions. For nearly 40 years, The Bank has been supporting South Carolina artists by building a collection of more than 100 pieces of fine art. This Corporate Collection, showcasing 36 of South Carolina’s most talented artists, is featured prominently in The Bank’s Greenville headquarters. The Bank, a significant patron of the arts, spreads its support across many different community organizations, including the Greenville Symphony, The Peace Center for the Performing Arts, Greenville County Museum of Art, Anderson County Arts Center, and the Arts Council of Greenwood County – Emerald Triangle Project. These major contributions—and countless others— illustrate how The Palmetto Bank has established its name as a leader in the Palmetto state art community.
For more information, please call SAM at 864/582-7616.