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Confederation Centre of the Arts Foundation launches Erica Rutherford Memorial Fund

June 27, 2014

(Charlottetown, P.E.I.) - The family of Erica Rutherford has initiated a new endowment fund at Confederation Centre of the Arts. Prince Edward Islanders Gail and Susana Rutherford approached the Centre to start a bursary scholarship for artists with a balance of donations raised during a silent and on-line auction after Erica's passing in 2008. Erica Rutherford was a well-known Island artist in the truest sense of the word. Her undertakings included being a painter, print-maker, actor, film producer, teacher and writer.

"On behalf of my mother, Gail Rutherford and I we are very pleased to announce the new home of the Erica Rutherford memorial scholarship," says Susana Rutherford, Erica's daughter and co-founder of the memorial fund with her mother. "Mentorship and inspiring younger artists was very important to Erica in her lifetime. An artist who worked in a variety of disciplines, Erica would be very pleased with this opportunity to continue supporting younger artists".

The bursary will benefit students within Canada who are continuing - i.e. second year or second term - any manner of artistic, performing, visual, etc. accredited education. Preference will be given to residents of P.E.I.

The fund had been originally held by the P.E.I. Council of the Arts. The family learned of the Canadian Heritage matching program for endowment gifts - when the principle is held and invested - which Confederation Centre of the Arts Foundation is eligible for. Transferring the fund became an opportunity to grow it quickly and the Council of the Arts was happy to cooperate in order to maximize the benefits to Island arts students.

"By dutifully investing and overseeing a fund such as the Rutherfords', the Foundation directors can alleviate the administration of this bursary for the family." says Michael Schurman, Chair of the Confederation Centre of the Arts Foundation.

The principle amount of all gifts to the Foundation and matching funds from the Canadian Heritage Endowment Incentives program must be held indefinitely, and the interest revenue is used by the Centre to support activities as per the wishes of the donor. The Centre plans to award the first bursary in the spring of 2015. Interest from other endowment funds is used for activities such as scholarships for arts and theatre education, gallery acquisitions and curatorship, the Symons lecture series, as well as theatre development work.

2014 is the final year that Confederation Centre is pre-qualified to apply to the current Endowment Incentives program. All gifts received before November 30, 2014 will be eligible for matching by the federal government. Please contact Wraychel Horne, foundation director at (902) 628.6137 or whorne@confederationcentre.com to make a donation as an investment in the Centre.

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Photo cutline:
Erica Rutherford, Sixty Is Not Enough, (heavy paper, 36" x 24".) The family of Island painter Erica Rutherford has initiated a new endowment fund in her honour at Confederation Centre of the Arts, which will be used to launch a new bursary scholarship for artists (submitted image).