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|Spring 2013||Photos of the Walk of the Flags|
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Oregon State Capitol Foundation
"Historic continuity with the past is not a duty; it is only a necessity."
Justice O.W. Holmes, Jr.
The vision of the Oregon State Capitol Foundation is to create a living history, enhance the dignity and beauty of the Capitol, and foster cultural and educational opportunities.
The Oregon State Capitol is a treasure to be safeguarded. The Oregon State Capitol Foundation is dedicated to preserving and enhancing the State Capitol and the shared heritage that it represents for all Oregonians.
Culture and Learning
The Oregon State Capitol is home to many art exhibits and historical displays. Both permanent and temporary pieces can be viewed in many of its corridors and lobbies. In the Governor's Office and the Galleria we provide many Oregon artists the opportunity to professionally display their artwork. Woodcarvings, Native American beadwork and quilts are just a few of the types of artwork that have been loaned to us in the past for the viewing pleasure of our visitors.
Each year thousands of tourists visit the Oregon State Capitol. Some come to admire the history of the building. Some are interested in the artwork. Others climb the 121 steps up into the Capitol tower and out onto an observation deck to get a closer look at the Oregon Pioneer and a spectacular view of Salem. Many more come to learn about or participate in the legislative process. During a legislative session, the State Capitol is full of activity with legislators, staff, and citizens from throughout the state of Oregon.
The idea for a non-profit organization originated in 1991 with the Capitol Preservation Advisory Committee (CPAC) who saw a need to explore funding sources and possibilities for Capitol projects which were not funded through the regular budget process. Initially, the group settled on the idea of organizing a "Friends of the Capitol" group. A subcommittee was formed to establish goals and objectives. In 1996, a Capitol Endowment Task Force was appointed by the Legislative Administrator to look into the possibility of creating an endowment fund to address ongoing maintenance needs without having to rely on General Funds. Ultimately, the 1997 Oregon State Legislature passed Senate Bill 1220 to establish the Oregon State Capitol Foundation and an Oregon State Capitol Foundation Fund. At that point, Foundation Board members were appointed and work began on a strategic plan for accomplishing their purpose.
Since its gala, kick-off event in April 2001, the Capitol Foundation has made significant progress. The Foundation's first project added four, beautiful granite benches in the Capitol Rotunda. On May 4, 2009, eight new black marble benches were added to the Capitol Rotunda. In 2003, the Foundation partnered with Oregon veterans groups to construct the Oregon Veterans Medal of Honor Memorial. The Memorial honors all members of the U.S. Armed Forces, past and present, while paying special tribute to the 13 Oregon recipients of the Medal of Honor. On June 14, 2005, the Walk of Flags was dedicated in Willson Park adjacent to the Capitol. The Walk of Flags features flags from all 50 states, displayed in order of admission to the Union. This display is a beautiful enhancement to the Capitol grounds and an educational opportunity for schoolchildren and other visitors. In addition the Foundation joined former Governor Vic Atiyeh to replace the badly weathered plaque describing the marble column segments in Capitol Park that were part of Oregon's former statehouse destroyed by fire in 1935.
The Capitol Foundation celebrates contributions to state government for the benefit of all Oregonians by sponsoring events such as Mark O. Hatfield Day, the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commemoration and Capitol Memories Reunions. Further, former elected officials, lobbyists and staff are interviewed for the Foundation's oral history program. The Foundation also publishes quarterly newsletters that provide updates on the State Capitol, historical information and “alumni" news.
In 2005, the Oregon State Legislature called for establishment of a Capitol History Center. The Capitol Foundation will play a role in this effort to preserve for all visitors a graphic view of Oregon's history.
How You Can Help
In 2007, the Fund for the Oregon State Capitol foundation was organized as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. The Fund provides the flexibility to invest all contributions to the Capitol Foundation into an interest-earning Fund account. The Oregon State Capitol Foundation is also included on the Oregon Cultural Trust's list of eligible cultural organizations. This allows the Fund for OSCF to receive gifts that qualify a donor to make a later matching gift to the Trust and receive a 100% tax credit. Additionally, more than 200 people have joined hands with the Foundation as Capitol Friends to help further its mission. Others support the Foundation through memorial gifts and estate plan giving.
In 2009, the legislature passed two bills providing new revenue for the Capitol Foundation. SB 961 authorized a "Pacific Wonderland" license plate and divided the net revenue after expenses between the Oregon State Capitol Foundation and the Oregon Historical Society. The Pacific Wonderland plate has been re-created in honor of Oregon's sesquicentennial. By purchasing a plate, Oregonians can own a piece of Oregon history and help sustain the work of two important organizations dedicated to preserving it. The 2009 Legislative Assembly also passed Senate Bill 660, which authorizes state employees to use payroll deduction as a way of contributing to the Oregon State Capitol Foundation.
Excitement and support for the Foundation continue to grow. By partnering with the Oregon State Capitol Foundation, you can have a part in preserving this grand, historical landmark and the history it represents for generations to come.
The Oregon State Capitol Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.
Join the many friends that have already committed to helping the Oregon Capitol Foundation accomplish its goals. We've made it easy for you to join. Complete the Application Form - Mail form to:
Oregon State Capitol Foundation,
900 Court St. NE, Room 140-A
Salem, OR 97301
If you are a state employee, you may donate directly via payroll deduction.
State Employee Payroll Deduction Form
Make a secure donation online.
According to ORS 173.500(1), the foundation shall be composed of not fewer than nine and not more
than 25 members, who shall serve a term of four years. Three members of the Senate
are appointed by the Senate President, three members of the House of Representatives
are appointed by the Speaker of the House, and the remaining members are to be
appointed by the Legislative Administration Committee. Members are eligible for
reappointment. At all times there shall be appointed to the foundation an odd
number of members.
Senator Lee Beyer
Senator Ted Ferrioli
Senator Arnie Roblan
Representative Vicki Berger
Representative Brian Clem
Representative John Huffman
Fred VanNatta, Chair
The Foundation hosted their first Hello Again Capitol Social on February 5th. The purpose of the event was to welcome new, returning and former legislators to the Capitol, renew friendships and celebrate our stately Capitol. The event was a success with nearly 400 in attendance and raising money for the Foundation and its efforts. The evening included a raffle drawing and the reveal of the newly installed exhibit designed by the Oregon Historical Society. To view photos of the event go to http://youtu.be/ntBGFzjqXTM.
Juliene Popinga, Administrator
900 Court St. NE, Room 140-A
Salem, OR 97301
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