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From the President 

Welcome to Cranbrook. Whether you're back from what was hopefully an enjoyable summer or joining us for the first time, we look forward to sharing our campus with you this year. With a quick glance at the calendar it struck me that there are countless ways to experience Cranbrook over the next ten months. My hope is to see each of you at as many events as possible, regardless of where your affiliation with our special community may be!


You may notice that I have changed the format of my letter to you this year to include photos related to the topics that I'd like to share with you. I appreciate any feedback you may have.


Plenty of rain has kept our landscaping crew and many volunteers very busy, and they have done a terrific job keeping our grounds looking beautiful and lush as the fall approaches. If you should encounter one of our groundskeepers I hope you will offer them a sincere thanks, especially following the tough winter of last year.    


Over the summer, we have been busy with projects to maintain and improve the special campus we all share, as well as to better support our curriculum. A shining example is the technology lab at Brookside, created and supported through funds raised by Kaleidoscope. Plus, finishing touches on the restoration of the Thompson Oval were completed in time to proudly support the varsity boy's football schedule, and work on a new parking lot and exit road for access to Cranbrook House is about to begin.   


Summer camps at Cranbrook Institute of Science, Cranbrook Schools, and the Cranbrook Summer Art Institute were all very well attended. Collectively, our 83+ programs saw 1,688 campers over the summer. Students from 15 states and nine different countries attended the Cranbrook Summer Art Institute, joining us from as far away as Malaysia, Nigeria, and South Africa! Camps at Cranbrook Institute of Science saw a 50% increase in revenue from last summer and hosted several hundred inspired future scientists. Cranbrook Schools' campers and their parents told us that they loved the programs and will be back next summer. Great job camp staff! Thank you for your hard work this summer introducing kids, teens and their families to all that Cranbrook has to offer!


Looking forward, we will celebrate a very special milestone this year. In addition to being the 110th year since the Booths founded Cranbrook, we are approaching the 50th Anniversary of Cranbrook Schools Horizons Upward Bound (HUB) program. This remarkable program offers Cranbrook educational opportunities to urban young people with the goal of changing their lives. In the coming months you will hear a great deal about HUB, and for good reason! Founded in 1965, ours is the largest Upward Bound program in the U.S., and is the most successful of its kind. In fact, 70% of our HUB students graduate from college within six years of completing high school. Stay tuned for more HUB history, stories, and events throughout the year.


For something truly "out of this world," our Cranbrook Kingswood Middle School for Girls students are "MoonBots Challenge" finalists! The MoonBots Challenge is an online contest where teams from around the world design, program, and construct LEGO robots that perform simulated lunar missions. After submitting a video essay, testimonial, a lunar landscape design and live game transmission, one of our teams, Team Artemis Rising, advanced to the final round of judging. Great job Team Artemis Rising! 


I am also pleased to welcome Christopher Scoates back to Cranbrook as the new Director of Cranbrook Academy of Art. Chris received his Master of Fine Arts 

degree in photography in 1986 from Cranbrook Academy of Art and Art Museum. Since 2005, he has served as Director of the University Art Museum at California State University Long Beach and he brings more than 25 years of experience working with artists and educators in traditional university settings and stand-alone art schools. Chris is the author of "Brian Eno: Visual Music" (2013) and "Bullet Proof...I Wish I Was: The Lighting and Stage Design of Andi Watson" (2011). His extensive experience organizing exhibitions and conferences will serve him, and Cranbrook, well in his new role. Chris' wife, Fiona Ragheb, is a 1982 graduate of Cranbrook Kingswood Schools. By the way, on August 1st, Chris' first official day at Cranbrook, his son Jasper was born. Welcome to Cranbrook, Chris, Fiona and Jasper!


In addition to having Chris on board, so much is going on at Cranbrook Art Museum. Six new exhibitions were launched over the summer, including the very popular Warhol On Vinyl installation. For the 2014-2015 academic year, Cranbrook Schools families have complimentary Cranbrook Art Museum membership, thanks to the generosity of PNC Bank. Museum members (ArtMembers) enjoy free general admission, exclusive opening receptions, volunteer opportunities, and more! PNC is also hosting a special Family Day on September 28, with many fun and engaging activities for all Cranbrook Schools families and Cranbrook friends of all ages. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet and welcome Chris at this special gathering, and kids can build their own boat and launch it in a boat regatta in the Triton Pools! Finally, in November, we will discover what happens when pandemonium erupts yet again at Cranbrook Art Museum, as the ever-anticipated fall fundraising event, Crandemonium! takes place. If you enjoy art, surprises or simply a fantastic evening, you will want to attend. Tickets are now available on the Museum's website.


The dinosaurs have all but gone extinct at Cranbrook Institute of Science to make way for National Geographic's Women of Vision, a major, nationally-recognized exhibition profiling the lives and work of 11 leading National Geographic female photojournalists. We are excited to be the first museum in the Midwest, and one of only eight museums nationally, to host this extraordinary exhibition which opens September 14 at the Institute, courtesy of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. I know you will notice the expansive media campaign in support of Women of Vision, including spots on WJR radio, WDIV television and CBS outdoor billboards throughout the region. I think it's fair to say the Institute's public profile has never been more visible!


On the same day as the Women of Vision opening, September 14, international painter Faye Sepahban will share the fruit of two decades of hard work and dedication to her art in her new book, "One World Portraits of Diversity." This collection of original portraits representing faces from around the world reflects the common human threads in every culture. Join us to see Faye's work and to purchase an autographed copy of her book to benefit the Institute of Science.


Also, did you know that October is American Archives Month? Our archives have a very important place here at Cranbrook and support many organizations and individuals throughout the region and beyond. For example, the history of the original Fox and Hounds restaurant at Long Lake and Woodward Avenue was researched at Cranbrook Archives this summer in support of Bill Roberston's new restaurant, "Bill's" at the same location. Many of the photos of Bill's venue are from the Cranbrook Archives. 


Additionally, as a way to emphasize the importance of looking into Cranbrook's past and beyond, Cranbrook Archives has a dynamic lecture series planned, with two lectures in October (Up North With the Hemingways and Boom Town: Detroit in the Roaring '20s) and one more in November (Scandals, Scalawags and (Un) Savory Stories). If you love history, Detroit and Michigan's past, this series is for you!


In closing, as a struggling gardener myself, I'm looking especially forward to Cranbrook & Friends Garden Walk. Attendees will see the work of real gardeners at four lovely private homes and the Cranbrook Gardens on September 13. Plus, in November, Cranbrook House and Gardens Auxiliary will host the grand finale Holiday Tables event. I know the legacy of Holiday Tables will hit its peak on this final weekend, and I am looking forward to new Cranbrook House and Gardens Auxiliary traditions to follow.


All of these special events and programs remind me of Cranbrook's true purpose  - to "Challenge Minds and Transform Lives." This year, as always, the Cranbrook community will work to achieve this lofty goal no matter the age, background or interest of those eager to learn.  I hope you will agree with me that there are few better ways to use our community's precious spaces, landscape, people and resources. 


In an effort to communicate more frequently with all of our friends at Cranbrook, we are regularly posting photographs and updates on what's happening at Cranbrook on our Facebook and Twitter pages. If you haven't already, please like and follow us!


Each of us at Cranbrook remains grateful for your friendship and support.  My personal thanks for all that you have done, and continue to do, for Cranbrook. It's going to be a very special year! 




Dominic A. DiMarco, President

Cranbrook Educational Community



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