(VIDEO) A groundbreaking ceremony today (June 11) launched the construction project.
The Museum of Texas Tech University is expanding with the addition of the Dr. Robert Neff and Louise Willson Arnold Wing. The new wing, on the east side of the museum, will include two levels and a basement with collection storage, classrooms, offices and a new gallery space.
The new wing was made possible by the generous support of the Helen Jones Foundation Inc. and honors Dr. Robert Neff and Louise Willson Arnold, both of whom spent a lifetime in service to the Lubbock community and beyond. Louise Arnold served as the first executive director of the Helen Jones Foundation (1984-2005) and Dr. Robert Arnold was a member of the foundation's board.
A groundbreaking was held today (June 11) at the museum and attended by Texas Tech University System Chancellor Dr. Tedd Mitchell, Texas Tech University President Lawrence Schovanec, Texas Tech Foundation board members, members of the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents, board members of the Helen Jones Foundation and members of the Arnold Family.
Aaron Pan, the museum's executive director, is grateful to the Helen Jones Foundation and excited about how the new wing will serve the community.
“The Helen Jones Foundation has been a steadfast supporter of the museum for many years, and we are very thankful for all they have done to ensure the success of the museum,” Pan said. “This new addition supports all aspects of the museum, including facilities for collection care, a beautiful gallery for our guests and the community to enjoy, and an area for our Heritage and Museum Sciences program to cultivate future museum professionals.”
The Helen Jones Foundation has made significant donations to Texas Tech, several educational institutions and a host of visual and performing arts companies. In combination with personal gifts from Mrs. Helen DeVitt Jones, the foundation has generously contributed more than $72 million to support the initiatives and students of the Texas Tech University System.
In 2017, the Dr. Robert and Louise Arnold Estate donated a collection of 559 contemporary works of art to the Museum of Texas Tech University Association. These works of art will be on exhibit in the new gallery space. Construction will begin in mid-June, and completion is expected in summer 2023.