Ukrainian Community Donates $1 Million to Renaissance ROM

The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is pleased to announce that members of the Ukrainian Canadian community have contributed over $1 million in support of the Renaissance ROM campaign. The Renaissance ROM Ukrainian Initiative supports the ROM’s innovative Digital Gallery, and the new Shaping Canada: Our Voices and Stories digital exhibit.

Lead donors Ian Ihnatowycz and Marta Witer launched the campaign with their $500,000 contribution in 2005. “We are most grateful to Ian Ihnatowycz and Marta Witer, and the many supporters from Canada’s Ukrainian community for their extraordinary generosity. Their support of Renaissance ROM is a remarkable gift to Ontario and Canada,” says William Thorsell, Director and CEO of the ROM.

“As parents, we feel strongly about the Museum’s educational mandate, and we’re pleased to support the use of innovative technology to bring history to life for a new generation of students,” says Ian Ihnatowycz of his and Dr. Witer's donation.

Spearheading the fundraising campaign were Renaissance ROM campaign cabinet members Roman Dubczak and Donna Ihnatowycz.

The Initiative supports the ROM Digital Gallery, an innovative digital classroom created through the Renaissance ROM project. The gallery allows school children to experience the ROM’s collections through multi-media themed lessons as well as to interact with 3D images of artifacts. Additionally, this Initiative supported the creation of the Museum’s latest digital exhibit, Shaping Canada: Our Voices and Stories. This new digital exhibit presents historical experiences of Canada’s many peoples, by taking museum artifacts and exploring their significance in terms of historical events. It will be presented to the public for the first time during the ROM’s A Season of Canada.

Community advisors Oksana Kuryliw, Valentina Kuryliw, and Alexandra Y. Semeniuk assisted in the development of the Ukrainian component within the Shaping Canada: Our Voices and Stories digital exhibit. The Ukrainian Museum of Canada’s Ontario Branch also contributed artifacts that are featured in the digital exhibit.

Under the leadership of ROM Board of Governors Chairman James Temerty, the ROM has built a strong relationship with Canada’s Ukrainian community. In 2001, the community organized a gala event in support of the Legacy in Gold: Scythian Treasures from Ancient Ukraine exhibition, one of the most successful galas in the ROM’s history.

In light of these successes, the ROM is delighted that members of the community will organize a gala in 2008 to support the Museum’s major new exhibition, Ancient Ukraine: Mysteries of the Trypillian Culture. The ROM is honoured that the First Lady of Ukraine, Kateryna Yushchenko, is supporting this exhibition as Honorary Patron.

The Royal Ontario Museum is grateful to the following donors for their generous support of the Renaissance ROM Ukrainian Initiative:

Dr. Martin Chepesiuk and Ms. Halyna Perun

The Dubczak Family

Alexandra and Julia Holgate

Ian Ihnatowycz and Marta Witer

Charles and Jane Kucey and Family

Ihor and Valentina Kuryliw

Zenon and Sonia Potichnyj

Arthur and Mary Sawchuk

Ukrainian Canadian Foundation of Taras Schevchenko

James and Louise Temerty

Roman (Moko) Wynnyckyj and Maria Lialka

John Yaremko, Q.C. and Mary A. Yaremko