CLIENT CASE STUDIES
John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
WolfBrown provided services to the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation for more than a decade. These services included research and program development, program management, meeting facilitation, and a host of related activities. Two major projects were the Museum Loan Network and the "Magic of Music" Program.
Museum Loan Network: WolfBrown helped the Foundation assess whether a system could be developed to encourage object-rich museums to share resources with those that might have a desire and need for them. Such a system might enrich the exhibiting reach of the museum field, allow more people to see more objects, and contribute to scholarship and conservation.
The consultants initiated their study of an art loan network by surveying museums and conducting in-depth interviews with more than 100 people. They asked about collections, about interest in lending and borrowing. And they learned that there was enthusiastic interest and enough correlation between borrower and lender interests to suggest a potential for powerful collaborations. They also learned that long-term exchanges addressed the field challenge of escalating costs of mounting exhibitions.
Based on the consultants' findings, the Knight Foundation encouraged the Pew Charitable Trusts to participate as a partner in launching the Museum Loan Network. WolfBrown conducted the search for the first director, incubated the program for a year in its own offices, and eventually arranged for program administration at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where the program is now housed. WolfBrown consultants also helped establish the initial database of museums, contacts, and collection material.
"Magic of Music" Program: From 1994 to 2005, consultants from WolfBrown provided guidance, technical assistance, and program management to the Knight Foundation's "Magic of Music" program. One of the most significant national foundation initiatives for the orchestra field in the last fifty years, the program has fostered program innovation, audience development, institutional change, and ground-breaking research.
WolfBrown services included consultation on overall program design (including goals and outcomes of three phases of the program), the development of guidelines and application materials, meeting facilitation (including the planning and implementation of annual retreats involving more than 100 participants), technical assistance to participating orchestras, and field presentations. WolfBrown also planned and carried out a field summit at Tanglewood that was supported by Knight to consider the role of the Music Director in the 21st Century and worked with the Foundation to determine ways in which the lessons and accomplishments of the program can become institutionalized in the orchestra field.
As a final step, Dr. Thomas Wolf wrote a history of the program which is available from the Knight Foundation.
Go to www.knightfdn.org