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Trustees Rededicate Graduate Studio Center as Fred Lazarus IV Center

Graduate Studio Center and adjacent 1801 Falls Road to be renamed Fred Lazarus IV Center

Posted 04.24.14 by MICA Communications

Graduate Studio Center Rededicated as Fred Lazarus IV Center

On Thursday, April 24, 2014, MICA celebrated the rededication of Graduate Studio Center, and adjacent 1801 Falls Road, as the Fred Lazarus IV Center for Graduate Studies. The Fred Lazarus IV Center symbolizes Lazarus' efforts and commitment not only to MICA but also to the Greater Baltimore area.

"Fred's dedication to this College, his involvement in the City and his accomplishments--far too numerous to count are the reason why I am so pleased to be here with you on this special occasion, as we rename the Graduate Studio Center in his honor," Neil Meyerhoff, chair of MICA's Board of Trustees, said during the rededication. "As trustees, former trustees, donors and family members, you have all witnessed Fred's magical ability to bring his visions to life, but it is your partnership, support and most importantly shared belief through the years that MICA could become one of the finest art and design colleges in the world, which has made all of this possible. So, on behalf of MICA's students, faculty, staff and community, I want to say thank you!"

LeRoy E. Hoffberger, trustee emeritus and former chairman, reflected on his more than 30 years' relationship with Lazarus, which began out of a mutual interest in moving the arts institution forward and championing cutting edge technologies to progress applied arts.

"Fred, your commitment first and foremost to the students, to MICA and to Baltimore is without question," Fredye W. Gross, trustee and former chairwoman, said. "You have continually managed over the years to raise everyone's sights as to the College's and the City's potential. You are a visionary who dreams big, but yet somehow always manages to follow through on your ambitious plans. When I think back to how far the College has come under your leadership and the extraordinary changes that I have witnessed during my tenure on the Board, I am still in awe."

Lazarus, in turn, shared that he did this work because of his passion for the job. He explained that the Fred Lazarus IV Center is a metaphor for so many initiatives he has cared about: building a graduate community; creating world-class facilities; hiring local architects (and in the center's case, alumnus George Holback '74); adopting readaptive reuse practices as part of the campus growth; revitalizing areas surrounding the MICA campus; and using creative financing, such as tax credits along with donations, to support building renovations.

Trustees Wendy Jachman '73, Ron Fidler '64, Gwen Davidson, Michel Model '10 and Ann Garfinkle, along with Meyerhoff, read the following resolution:

On January 31, 2014, MICA's Board of Trustees presented President Fred Lazarus IV with a resolution in recognition of his historic tenure, voting unanimously to rename the Graduate Studio Center on North Avenue in honor of Lazarus.

Whereas, Fred Lazarus IV, as president of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) for 36 years, has led the evolution of the College into a globally recognized leader in transformative art and design education, helping to expand the role of art and design education in academia, society, and commerce such that during his tenure, programming instituted by the College in both interdisciplinary study and community and social engagement have sparked international trends in higher education, and

Whereas, under President Lazarus's leadership, MICA's enrollment has more than doubled; the campus size has increased tenfold; the endowment has grown by more than 70 times; three research centers have been created; and 17 undergraduate and graduate academic programs have been added, growing the College's prestige such that MICA's MFA graduate programs are ranked in the top 10 nationally by US News & World Report, and

Whereas, President Lazarus has been widely recognized as a national leader in the advancement and integration of the arts, education, and community and economic development while helping transform Baltimore into a globally recognized center for creativity, having been instrumental in launching Artscape, the nation's largest free arts festival, helping to found the Baltimore Design School, serving as founding chair of both Americans for the Arts and the National Coalition for Education in the Arts and as founding board member of both the Midtown Development Corporation and the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design, and chairing the Maryland Independent College and Universities Association, the Arts Education Committee of the American Council for the Arts, the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance, and the Central Baltimore Partnership, and

Whereas, during his tenure, President Lazarus has been a prolific fundraiser, securing well over $150 million in contributions and grants, which has been crucial to MICA's programmatic and physical growth and enabled the College to garner national acclaim for its cutting-edge new buildings and innovative reuse of historically significant structures, and

Whereas, MICA is forever in the debt of President Lazarus for his groundbreaking vision, steadfast devotion, selfless commitment to collaboration, passion for students and steady stewardship, garnering unprecedented worldwide acclaim for MICA, now

Therefore, be it resolved by the Maryland Institute College of Art Board of Trustees, that the Graduate Studio Center and adjacent 1801 Falls Road be renamed Fred Lazarus IV Center.