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The Marshall Foundation is making a strategic decision to refocus its core mission of maintaining a world-class research library and archive,” said Brian D. Shaw, Foundation President. “In addition we will continue to prepare emerging leaders in military service, foreign service, public administration and business in the essentials of vision, strategy and leadership, those characteristics for which General Marshall was so well known.
Brian D. Shaw, Marshall Foundation President
Marshall Foundation Shifts To Leadership Education, Recommits To Research Support
December 11, 2012
As part of a decision by its Board of Trustees to refocus its mission, the George C. Marshall Foundation plans to transfer ownership of its building to Virginia Military Institute. The Marshall Foundation will continue to operate its research library and archives from its current location while offering educational programs in strategic thinking and leadership in Lexington and beyond.
The proposed transfer has been approved by the Foundation Board of Trustees and is subject to approval by The VMI Board of Visitors and the Virginia General Assembly. The arrangement is expected to become effective sometime in 2013. Under the proposal, ownership of the building and the ground it occupies will be transferred to VMI, which intends to execute a long-term lease to allow the Marshall Foundation to stay in a portion of the building.
“The Marshall Foundation is making a strategic decision to refocus its core mission of maintaining a world-class research library and archive,” said Brian D. Shaw, Foundation President. “In addition we will continue to prepare emerging leaders in military service, foreign service, public administration and business in the essentials of vision, strategy and leadership, those characteristics for which General Marshall was so well known,” Shaw said.
“We will continue to operate as an independent, private, nonprofit foundation with our own board of trustees and corporate charter. And we have enjoyed a long and mutually beneficial relationship with VMI that we expect will continue for many years,” he said.
Founded in 1953, the Marshall Foundation operates an archive and a research library, conducts conferences, participates in special events and outreach, and is concluding the publication of the seven-volume Marshall Papers, a comprehensive study of Marshall’s life and career. The building, located at VMI, was dedicated in 1964.
A 1901 graduate of VMI, Marshall was the chief of staff of the Army during World War II. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for the post-war European Recovery Program known as the “Marshall Plan” that restored the economies of Western Europe while he was Secretary of State. Later he served as Secretary of Defense during the Korean War.
General J. H. Binford Peay III ’62, VMI’s Superintendent, said VMI’s educational mission and its close association with Marshall make the transfer a sensible move.
“This supports our educational mission as a state institution,” he said. “General Marshall is a large figure in VMI’s history and lore. It is natural for VMI to take up management of this building and ensure its continued use to recognize the many contributions he made to the world. At the same time, this arrangement will benefit the Marshall Foundation, allowing it to transition to this new phase of service to our nation.”
VMI’s plan is to lease part of the building to the Foundation for its offices, archives, and other functions. The primary public spaces of building will be taken over by VMI, with much of that area to be devoted to such functions as visitor reception. The Institute has identified other educational and general functions that can be placed in the building.
In addition to the current public space, VMI will occupy a number of offices and other spaces, including the Pogue Auditorium.
While many of the items in the museum will transfer to VMI, other items, including the library collection and archives, will remain with the Foundation. Those items will remain available to scholars and the public.