Phoenix Investors Sees Value in Local Arts Education Programming

UPAF | July 15, 2020

MILWAUKEE – Phoenix Investors, a national private commercial real estate firm headquartered in Milwaukee, is investing $25,000 in United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF), specifically to UPAF Bright Minds, presented by BMO Harris Bank. UPAF Bright Minds provides essential funding to arts education initiatives delivered by UPAF Member Groups, touching the lives of over 100,000 students each year.

“UPAF serves an incredible and imperative role in making the arts more accessible for all of Southeastern Wisconsin, especially our children,” said Frank P. Crivello, Chairman & Founder of Phoenix Investors. “UPAF’s wide reach, admirable mission, and undeniable impact on our youth and the whole of our cultural identity are more than worthy of our support, especially amidst the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Phoenix Investors’ gift will be directed to two distinct arts education programs, First Stage’s Theater Academy and Milwaukee Ballet’s Relevé program. First Stage Theater Academy, the nation’s largest theater training program for young people, teaches life skills through stage skills to over 2,500 students in the Greater Milwaukee area each year. Milwaukee Ballet’s Relevé program directly links the benefits of dance and education for grade school students, through providing 220 Milwaukee Public Schools students with a variety of professional level ballet experiences including classes, tickets to Ballet performances and in-school visits from Ballet dancers, all at no cost to students or schools.

“We are so fortunate to have Phoenix Investors in our community,” said Deanna Tillisch, UPAF president & CEO. “Frank Crivello and his team have made a tremendous commitment to improving lives in neighborhoods across our region through their support of UPAF Bright Minds. During difficult times, arts education and outreach programming is often the first to be reduced or eliminated. Support from organizations like Phoenix Investors is of the utmost importance to ensure that arts education remains a critical part of students’ lives.”

About UPAF

The United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF) has been setting the stage since 1967 by providing critical investment in our region’s vibrant performing arts scene. UPAF’s mission is to secure community resources, promote the performing arts as a regional asset and improve the quality of life through responsible investment in and financial support of the performing arts in Southeastern Wisconsin. In 2019 UPAF raised more than $11.9 million to support the area’s performing arts environment. UPAF proudly bears Charity Navigator’s highest distinction for nonprofits – a four-star rating – and is the No. 1 united arts fund in the country in terms of dollars raised.

As an umbrella organization, UPAF supports a breadth of performing arts groups that collectively offer something for everyone through its 14 Member Groups and numerous Affiliates. More than one million people are touched each year through performances, educational outreach, special events and community partnerships.

# # #