Milwaukee Business Journal: Johnson Controls pledges $1.65 million to Milwaukee arts community

Margaret Naczek | May 3, 2023

Johnson Controls International, which has its corporate operations in Glendale, has committed a three-year pledge to the United Performing Arts Fund. The pledge totals $1,650,000 and runs through 2025.

Johnson Controls (NYSE: JCI) chairman and CEO George Oliver shared the news at the company's UPAF employee giving campaign. Johnson Controls matches all employees gifts for this employee giving campaign.

“Through our global volunteerism and commitment to philanthropy, we are helping build healthier, smarter and more sustainable communities where our employees live and work,” Oliver said in a press release. “We have been a part of the Milwaukee community for 140 years and are proud to partner with these organizations that play a positive role in our hometown."

UPAF president and CEO Patrick Rath said in the release that Johnson Controls is consistently one of the top donors to the United Performing Arts Fund.

In August 2022, Rath shared that UPAF member groups have faced a nearly $38 million loss over the last three seasons as a result of impacts from the Covid-19 pandemic.

"UPAF’s members and affiliates are still in the midst of recovering from Covid-19-related revenue losses and corporate support from organizations like Johnson Controls is critical to continued recovery for years to come,” Rath said.

A portion of Johnson Control's contributions to UPAF will go to specific initiatives such as the UPAF Connect and Bright Minds initiatives. Johnson Controls will also prioritize support of programming in the neighborhoods that surround its Glendale campus.

UPAF supports the 14 member groups of First Stage, Florentine Opera Company, Milwaukee Ballet, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and Skylight Music Theatre. Members include Bel Canto Chorus, Black Arts MKE, Danceworks, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra (MYSO), Next Act Theatre, Present Music and Renaissance Theaterworks.

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