Date of Press Release: January 18, 2008
A new arts endowment is established at UAS, thanks to a generous donation from Judge Robert Boochever. Boochever was on the Alaska Supreme Court from 1972-80 and served as Chief Justice from 1975-78. He was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to the 9th Circuit Court in 1980. The Connie Boochever Endowment for Arts was established in honor of his late wife, Lois Colleen “Connie” Boochever for her extraordinary contribution to the Arts in Alaska during her lifetime.
In the mid-1960s, Connie worked to establish the State Arts Council. She served as a governor's appointee on the Council for 11 years. She served as vice-chairman of the Board of the National Assembly of State Art Agencies; helped secure the Kimball organ for the capitol building in Juneau and was instrumental in securing passage by the Alaska legislature of the One Percent for Art. She was active in securing the Artists in School program and was a prime mover in restoring and developing the Last Chance Basin historical mining buildings. She was also instrumental in starting the Juneau Arts & Humanities Council and was a founding member of the Juneau Douglas Little Theatre as well as serving on a number of other community boards.
The purpose of this fund is to provide financial support to the Arts and Theater programs at the University of Alaska Southeast. Expenditures from this fund may include special program support and equipment grants, student scholarships, performance underwriting and the sponsoring of guest performances and cultural arts events on campus. Students applying for the scholarship must be pursuing a minor in theatre and follow the established scholarship application process for the University of Alaska.
UAS partners with Perseverance Theatre to offer courses in acting and directing as well as internships. A recent Perseverance second stage production was directed by a UAS student and featured two UAS students in lead roles. Daughter Ann Boochever said, "The collaboration between the University of Alaska Southeast and Juneau’s Perseverance Theater is unique. Few universities in the nation can provide a program in theater that includes actual training with a professional theater company. Expanding the drama program should help UAS attract more students."
The Connie Boochever fund has a balance of roughly $300,000, with more than $35,000 currently available to be awarded. Judge Boochever has also donated $100,000 to a campaign to upgrade a trail around Auke Lake. "It is fitting that a portion of the money go to the new Auke Lake Trail. My dad used to fly fish on Auke Lake. When he was Head of the Juneau Planning Commission he worked on the Site Selection Committee that chose Auke Lake as the site of the new Southeastern branch of the University of Alaska," said Ann Boochever.
Director of Puplic and Media Relations