Donor Spotlight: The Selley Foundation

The Selley Foundation is a Donor Advised Fund at the Greater New Orleans Foundation with interests in the areas of education, arts, and, in certain cases, the environment. Their emphasis on capital needs has been essential to the New Orleans Opera Association through their support for projects that have, typically, been more challenging to fundraise for.

It is usual for donors to prefer supporting projects with more visibility and that are out in the public view: programs in schools, performers on stage, public concerts, and publications, for example. Selley has consistently funded the “back-of-house,” the structural underpinnings, and the upgrading of equipment for the purpose of overall improved operational efficiency.

Underwriting for various aspects of staged productions and educational programs has traditionally been the most attractive area of interest for donors. The Foundation has consistently come through for some of our projects that are much more challenging to fund – like needing a new van for the Scenic Studio. Not only has it provided more reliable transportation for our educational programs in schools, but it also enabled us to finally retire a large, cumbersome truck (named “Delilah”) that had been on its last legs for years.

General and Artistic Director Clare Burovac

The Foundation has underwritten several other projects for the Opera’s Scenic Studio. Most recently, they provided supportive funding to repair the roof at the Scenic Studio following Hurricane Ida. Securing this important space was invaluable for the protection of the Studio’s storage areas which are full of sets, props, costuming, and materials for new construction. Selley has also helped in the past to replace some of the Studio’s large-scale equipment – some that have been in use for over four decades. As skilled as NOOA technical staff have been in maintaining their equipment, parts eventually become more difficult to find or the equipment itself becomes obsolete. The grants New Orleans Opera has received at these important moments have come at critical times for the company and have been essential to sustaining the important work that takes place behind the scenes.

Thank you to the Selley Foundation for its incredible support since 2008. We could not do what we do without you!