2016 – A Year of Innovative Projects at TRIP

Dear Friends and Partners—

Culture Matters! We are delighted to share a brief overview of 2016’s new TRIP projects and grants.

Highlights include thought leadership gatherings, exhibitions and events at local cultural organizations including the Queens Museum, The Trust For Public Land and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, as well as National Park Centennial projects, from Arizona to Florida. Internationally, we were excited to assist a new World Monuments Fund partnership with Cuba in dialogue for its rapidly unfolding future; develop a new initiative for cultural projects in Jordan; and support academic research on the diverse cultural landscape of Papua New Guinea.

Innovation: We keep a constant eye out for innovative cultural projects that spur economic development and a shared appreciation for authenticity and cross-cultural understanding in a rapidly changing world. In 2016, we once again elected to support projects that delivered on this mission.

Queens—Cultural Capital—The Trust for Public Land

The vision of The Friends of the QueensWay is to transform the abandoned and blighted 3.5 miles of the former Long Island Railroad Rockaway Beach Branch into a new linear park and multi-cultural greenway—improving quality of life while reaping economic benefits for residents, businesses and visitors to Central and Southern Queens. The Trust for Public Land creates new parks and protects land for public use. TRIP funded a dynamic conversation at the Queens Museum in October, convening 20 cultural and civic stakeholders to discuss innovative strategies for engaging community, political, and business leaders in arts and cultural programming. The Queensway is expected to debut in 2020.

JERUSALEM—Every People Under Heaven

As of this writing, an incredible four-month exhibition is on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art—Jerusalem, Every People Under Heavenfeaturing a multiplicity of perspectives on the cultural heterogeneity that Jerusalem has embodied for centuries. We send our congratulations to Barbara Drake Boehm, Paul and Jill Ruddock Senior Curator for The Met Cloisters and Melanie Holcomb, Curator, Department of Medieval Art and The Cloisters for their brilliant research, diplomacy and vision in executing this landmark study and securing such important loans for display in New York City.

Papua New Guinea—Disposession and the Environment

The Colleen Ritzau Leth ’08 Family Fund for International Research at Barnard College awarded a grant to Professor of Anthropology Dr. Paige West, who published her research this year in the book Disposession and the Environment, a study on the impact of NGOs, tourism and foreign visitors on Papua New Guinea and furthering inequalities in a globalized world. Our grants support college faculty conducting research that touches on the relationship between culture and international affairs or policy, and that work to promote mutual understanding between diverse societies. This permanent endowed fund allows a diverse cross section of Barnard’s exceptional New York City faculty to engage deeply in international research spanning the subjects of foreign relations, peace building, economics and human rights.

National Parks’ 100th Anniversary—National Park Foundation’s 50TH Anniversary
In 2016, the 100th Anniversary of our 410 National Parks, TRIP was privileged to support the National Park Foundation (founded in 1967) and several park projects that develop future stewards of these national treasures. TRIP’s grants supported an exciting new Youth Center scheduled to open in 2020 at Yellowstone National Park; an artist in residence program at Everglades National Park; and the program Honoring Tribal Connections at Desert Watchtower of Grand Canyon National Park. Robin enjoyed volunteering for several events at Grand Canyon and Ellis Island. In 2017, we look forward to finding new ways to join together in energizing new cultural connections at our parks.

Other News
We are delighted to announce that our VP Colleen Ritzau Leth was selected by the University of Oxford to deliver a TEDx talk at Cambridge University in April. “Why Museums Matter—Seeing the Present as Future” touched on several key components of TRIP’s mission, including the value of museums in providing space for intercultural dialogue and mutual understanding.

In 2016, Robin sponsored a new book: The Beautiful POND: Old Mill and Compo Cove, Westport. All proceeds were donated to SoundWaters, doubling their outreach to STEM programs for Connecticut youth and enlisting the next generation of stewards for local waters. She supported local conservation and cultural efforts and many events to raise awareness and support of traditional Connecticut coastal issues.

In closing, we look ahead to a very exciting 2017 for TRIP and our partners, with new engagements in our home cities as well as a number of international grants supporting initiatives in USA, Cuba, Greece, Jordan and Peru. We remind our friends and collaborators of our very simple mission: culture matters. And we ask you to forward any interests of your own.

It was a pleasure to collaborate on projects that impact communities and make a lasting difference on the way we see the world and one another. Thanks to everyone who supported our journey this year.

Wishing you peace in 2017,

Robin Tauck and Colleen Ritzau Leth