The Campaign for the Menil

Campaign Concluded

The Menil Collection concluded the first comprehensive capital campaign in its thirty-year history on December 31, 2017. Donations to The Campaign for the Menil totaled more than $121 million, exceeding the goal by $6 million.

The Campaign has made possible the construction of the Menil Drawing Institute, an energy-efficient central plant, a café, additional neighborhood greenspaces and parks, and a new landscaped parking lot and campus gateway on West Alabama Street. Additionally, $50 million of the money raised will be added to the museum’s endowment to support its growth. The Campaign has also enabled important upgrades to the award-winning Renzo Piano-designed main museum building, which provides an unparalleled art viewing experience for visitors.

More than 500 individual donors and foundations contributed gifts ranging from $5 to over $5 million to support the Menil Collection’s vision for the future.

Campaign Overview

Since the Menil Collection opened in 1987, the scope of its programming has expanded and the art collection has doubled in size. Strategic acquisitions of surrounding properties have extended the Menil’s historic Houston neighborhood, with smaller buildings that invite visitors to contemplate art with quiet personal concentration in what has become the Menil’s hallmark. Designed by Johnston Marklee, the Menil Drawing Institute is the newest addition to the Menil. The Menil Drawing Institute is the only freestanding facility in America created expressly for the acquisition, study, exhibition, conservation, and storage of modern and contemporary drawings. The Campaign for the Menil was created in part to support the realization of this innovative vision and to further the growth of the Menil within the context of local civic and international art communities.

Other projects completed in conjunction with The Campaign for the Menil are a new Energy House, also designed by Johnston Marklee, an efficient and environmentally sustainable central utilities plant for the campus; a landscaped entrance sequence to the Menil campus designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh and Associates; the Menil’s first café, Bistro Menil, designed by Stern and Bucek Architects of Houston; as well as two new parks. Access to all Menil Collection properties and programming is free to the public.

Campaign Steering Committee

The Menil is pleased to recognize members of the Campaign Steering Committee for their leadership and acknowledge gifts of $10,000 or more to The Campaign for the Menil.
Leslie Elkins Sasser, Chair
Eddie Allen
Adelaide de Menil
Kelly Hamman
Janet Hobby
David Kirkland, Jr.
Marilyn Oshman
Jessica Phifer
Louisa Stude Sarofim
Mark Wawro
Marcy Taub Wessel

Donor Honor Roll for The Campaign for the Menil


Louisa Stude Sarofim


The Brown Foundation, Inc.


Nancy D. and Robert J. Carney
John R. Eckel, Jr. Foundation
John P. and Kathrine G. McGovern


Suzanne Deal Booth
The Cullen Foundation
The Elkins Foundation
Houston Endowment
Adelaide de Menil
Bérengère Primat


Chinhui and Eddie Allen
E. Rudge Allen Family
Susan and Richard Anderson Family Fund
Charles Butt
Clare Casademont and Michael Metz
Dan L Duncan Foundation
Barbara and Michael Gamson
Diana and Russell Hawkins
William J. Hill
Hobby Family Foundation
Linda and George Kelly
Janie C. Lee
Cornelia and Meredith Long
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Susan and Francois de Menil
Susanne and William E. Pritchard III
Allison Sarofim
The Sarofim Foundation
William F. Stern
The Wawro-Gray Foundation
The Wortham Foundation
Nina and Michael Zilkha


Nancy and Mark Abendshein
The Fondren Foundation
Kinder Foundation
Marilyn Oshman and The Oshman Foundation
Anne and Bill Stewart


Gail, Louis and Marc Adler
Laura and John Arnold
Jereann and Holland Chaney
Agnes Gund
Anne and David Kirkland
Menil Contemporaries
Franci Neely Foundation
Scott and Judy Nyquist
Karen and Harry Pinson
Scaler Foundation, Inc.
The Search Foundation
Vivian L. Smith Foundation
Mike Stude
Marcy Taub Wessel and the Taub Foundation
Ann and Mathew Wolf

$100,000 - $199,999

Ruth and Ted Bauer Family Foundation
Leslie and Brad Bucher
Diane and Michael Cannon
Chao Family Foundation
Coneway Family Foundation
Hilda and Greg Curran
Sara Paschall Dodd
Fant Foundation
The Fitch Family
Heidi and David Gerger
George and Mary Josephine Hamman Foundation
Janet Gurwitch
Barbara and Gerald D. Hines
Paige and Todd Johnson
Jesse H. Jones II
Carol and Neil Kelley
Sissy and Denny Kempner
Isabel and Ransom Lummis

Nancy McGregor and Neal Manne
M.D. Anderson Foundation
Evelyn and Roy Nolen
The Omena Fund
Kitty King Powell
T.R. and Isla Reckling
Fayez Sarofim
Leigh and Reggie Smith
Lois and George Stark
Phoebe and Bobby Tudor
Bridget and Patrick Wade


Cece and Mack Fowler
Holthouse Foundation for Kids
Rochelle and Max Levit
Gary Mercer
Henry and Neda Scanlan in memory of Jacob Scanlan
Eleanor Sheldon
Susan Vaughan Foundation
The Melvyn and Cyvia Wolff Family Fund
Barbara and Charlie Wright


Judy Ley Allen
Jeff Beauchamp
Bettie Cartwright
Stephanie and Greg Evans
Sarah and John Hastings
Caroline Huber
Winnifred and Mavis Kelsey
Stephanie Larsen
Marley Lott
Dr. Penelope and Mr. Lester Marks
Mary Ann and Alexander McLanahan
Fan and Peter Morris
Carol and David Neuberger
Emily Rauh Pulitzer
Fairfax and Risher Randall
Jacqueline and Richard Schmeal
Elizabeth and Richard Schnieders
Lea Weingarten
Marion and Benjamin Wilcox
Erla and Harry Zuber

Menil Contemporaries Steering Committee

Jessica Phifer, Chair
Whitney Mears, Vice Chair
Kelly Hamman, Chair, Menil Contemporaries Fund
Mitchell Baldridge
Sara Cain
Leigh-Ann Laughlin
John McLaughlin
Jennifer Nelsen
Joshua Newcomer
Ina Kuehnhoefer-Riley
Philip Riley
Paul Seifert
Caroline Starry
David Strauss
Judd Swanson

Menil Contemporaries Fund

The Menil Contemporaries joined The Campaign for the Menil through the creation of the Menil Contemporaries Fund, a $250,000 crowdfunding effort. The Menil Collection is grateful to the following individuals for their generous lead commitments to the Menil Contemporaries Fund:
Eddie and Chinhui Allen
Liz Anders & Associates
Wirt Blaffer
Sara Cain
Cullen K. Geiselman
Kelly Hamman and The Watson Foundation
Madeline Kelly
Sara Kelly
Leigh-Ann Laughlin
Katherine M. Lummis
Mr. Lester Marks and Dr. Penelope Marks
John McLaughlin
Whitney and Katie Mears
Jennifer Nelsen
Joshua Newcomer and Tejal Shah
Jessica Phifer
Ina Kuehnhoefer-Riley and Philip Riley
Sarah Beth and Paul Seifert
Kelly and Nicholas Silvers
Caroline Starry
Stella McCartney Houston
Jennifer and David Strauss
Judd Swanson
Chester Urban
Mark Wawro & Melanie Gray and The Wawro-Gray Family Foundation
Lea Weingarten and The Weingarten Art Group
Marcy Taub Wessel and The Taub Foundation
Benjamin Wilcox
Meredith Xavier
Elizabeth and Barry Young