$50 Million Investment in ROM’s Vision to Transform Museum Experience for Generations to Come

Hennick Family Foundation provides catalytic support for 21st-century ROM

TORONTO, June 23, 2022 — Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) today announced a $50 million gift from the Hennick Family Foundation – the single largest cash gift in the Museum’s history. The gift supports a multi-year revitalization plan intended to advance ROM’s vision as Canada’s world Museum to be a welcoming and inspirational focal point of cultural and community engagement.

“ROM is committed to becoming ever more central to people’s lives by creating an uplifting and inspiring environment that engages visitors and brings people together,” said Josh Basseches, ROM’s Director & CEO. “Physical and programmatic enhancements are required as we evolve into a 21st-century museum, and I look forward to sharing more about this transformation in the coming months. Today, I want to acknowledge that this truly visionary gift from the Hennick Family Foundation comes at a critical time as we collectively reemerge from the pandemic to rebuild our cities and restore the social and cultural fabric of our communities.”

“We cannot think of a better way to support the revitalization of civic life in Toronto and Ontario than to support the Royal Ontario Museum’s new vision,” said Barbara and Jay Hennick, “which promises to transform iconic spaces and the way we experience art, culture and nature for generations to come.”  

John Kearsey, President & CEO of ROM Governors, the Museum’s philanthropic arm, enthusiastically stated that “The Hennick Family Foundation is enabling us to offer a more inclusive space for people to learn, exchange ideas, and share different points of view. Barbara and Jay Hennick are catalyzing this vision into action through their generosity, and we could not be more grateful. They have unlocked a profound opportunity for the philanthropic community to come together to create once-in-a-generation change.”

Further details about ROM’s strategic vision and multi-year revitalization plan will be released at a later date.


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Established in 1992 as the ROM Foundation, ROM Governors is responsible for all philanthropic activities in support of the Museum’s highest priorities. Its work enables the ROM to better serve its diverse and ever-changing community, by fostering long-term sustainable relationships of exceptional value both to the institution and its donors. ROM Governors is supported by an independent Board which provides leadership in a wide range of philanthropic activities supporting ROM programs, research, collections, galleries, exhibitions and outreach programs.

Opened in 1914, Royal Ontario Museum showcases art, culture and nature from around the world and across the ages. Among the top 10 cultural institutions in North America, Canada’s largest and most comprehensive museum is home to a world-class collection of 13 million art objects and natural history specimens, featured in 40 gallery and exhibition spaces. As the country’s preeminent field research institute and an international leader in new and original findings, ROM plays a vital role in advancing our understanding of the artistic, cultural and natural world. Combining its original heritage architecture with the contemporary Daniel Libeskind-designed Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, ROM serves as a national landmark, and a dynamic cultural destination in the heart of Toronto for all to enjoy.