Hershey Foundation Answers Schulz Challenge | Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and MuseumBilly Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum

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Hershey Foundation Answers Schulz Challenge

The Ohio State University Libraries is thrilled to announce that The Hershey Foundation of Northeast Ohio has answered the Schulz Challenge with a multi-year grant of $100,000 to support the new Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum (BICLM) facility, part of the Sullivant Hall renovation at OSU.  The Hershey Foundation gift will be matched dollar for dollar by Jean Schulz, widow of Peanuts’ creator Charles M. Schulz, giving it a $200,000 impact on the project. Schulz has pledged to match all donations to the new facility up to $2.5 million.  This generous grant from the Hershey Foundation brings the total raised or pledged for the Schulz Challenge to $2,380,000.

In recognition of this gift, the new BICLM office and cataloging suite will be named in honor of Peter Guren.  Guren is a cartoonist and creator of the syndicated comic strip Ask Shagg, an educational feature in which his character Shagg E. Dawg answers reader’s questions about animals.  Guren’s strip runs in 150 newspapers, and has provided a platform for raising awareness on environmental topics and encouraging children’s curiosity in the animal kingdom.  As the husband of Debra Hershey Guren, the President and CEO of The Hershey Foundation, Guren has been the foundation’s creative force and designer for over 22 years as well as serving as their IT technician.

Since 1986, The Hershey Foundation has provided Northeast Ohio with support for children’s programming in schools, museums, and other institutions that work to enhance learning and improve the quality of children’s lives from all socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds.  To learn more, visit the The Hershey Foundation website.

“The Hershey Foundation is pleased to support the capital campaign for the new Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum in honor of Peter Guren, my cartoonist husband, who created a cartoon strip for children of all ages,” said Debra Hershey Guren, President of The Hershey Foundation.  “As The Hershey Foundation supports projects that benefit children in Ohio, we know the Cartoon Library will be a great way to connect school and youth groups to the wonderful world of cartooning.”

The Sullivant Hall renovation is estimated to cost $26 million and will be completed in 2013, at which time Sullivant Hall will house the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, the Department of Dance and the Department of Art Education.  Upon completion of the Schulz Challenge, the Sullivant Hall renovation will be completely funded.

About the BICLM: Established in 1977 with a founding gift of the Milton Caniff Collection, the Cartoon Library & Museum was housed originally in two converted classrooms in Ohio State’s Journalism Building. Since then, thousands of donors have contributed to the collection with gifts ranging from one item to tens of thousands.  The Cartoon Library & Museum now houses more than 450,000 works of original cartoon art, 45,000 books, 67,000 serials (including 29,000 comic books), 3,000 linear feet of manuscript materials, and 2.5 million comic strip clippings and newspaper pages.

Now the world’s largest collection of cartoon art and comics material, the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum is currently located in the lower level of the Wexner Center for the Arts complex.  Its new, permanent home in Sullivant Hall will expand its space from 6,808 square feet to 30,000 square feet, providing much-needed additional storage and new exhibition galleries that will allow more of the collection to be displayed and made accessible to the public.  For more information, see http://cartoons.osu.edu.

Contact: Jenny Robb
The Ohio State University
Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum
27 W. 17th Avenue Mall
Columbus OH 43210-1343