Artful touches in new building express Federation mission

When the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona began designing its new building, not only did Federation leaders want to modernize their workspace, they wanted to create a sacred landmark, says President and CEO Stuart Mellan.

“We really wanted the building to be a place of meaning,” says Mellan. “We understood that we’re creating an office building, but we wanted some of the architectural elements and the art to reinforce the sacred and inspirational aspects of our work.”

The Harvey and Deanna Evenchik Center for Jewish Philanthropy, which houses the Federation and the Jewish Community Foundation of Southern Arizona, officially opened its doors on Oct. 15.

The planners designed the new building with four symbolic and functional factors in mind: unity, keeping the Federation and Foundation centralized in one, large space; visibility, having the building act as a landmark that signifies the vitality of the Federation and Foundation; security, providing an adequately secured office; and professionalism, creating an upgraded facility that will provide a modern and comfortable setting to host community events.

The Federation provides essential programming for the Jewish community in Tucson, as well as for its stateside and international partners, says Deanna Evenchik. She believes the Federation is boundless, so naming its artistic centerpiece “Infinite Possibilities” is pitch-perfect.

“When I saw it for the first time, I actually walked into the building and I cried — I got very verklempt,” she says.

Read the entire Arizona Jewish Post article here. Originally published on Dec. 1, 2017.

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