By Mimi Baird
Special to the Standard
August 1, 2001: the Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation Board of Trustees approves a five-year strategic plan that includes the goal to study and develop a Calvin Coolidge Resource Center.
February 28, 2003: The Foundation identifies as its number one priority to strengthen the relationship with the Vermont Division for Historic Preservation
November 2003: The Foundation and the Division sign a Memorandum of Understanding. The Foundation begins to examine the need to expand its office, education, archival and library space.
October 2004: The Foundation’s newly formed National Advisory Board suggests the construction of a large full-scale presidential library to be administered by the National Archives and Records Administration. The Foundation and the Division find the proposal to be impractical. The trustees of the Foundation vote to further study the possibilities for an education center to be built on a much smaller scale.
June 2, 2005: After study, the Foundation and the Division each complete documents spelling their individual educational specifications and space requirements and together they met with the State architect.
August 29, 2005: The Foundation trustees endorse the planning of an educational center in partnership with the Division and the Foundation commit to raise $20,000 towards the engagement of an architect to prepare schematic drawings.
December 8, 2005: The Foundation and the Division agree to and sign a document of “Guiding Principles” that defines their working relationship.
January 24, 2006: Black River Design is hired by the Division and continues as the architect for the project.
June 2006: $80,000* appropriation approved by the State of Vermont
July 2006: In retirement, Senator James M. Jeffords commits to a gift of $57,500 from his excess campaign funds for the building project.
August 1, 2006: The Foundation and the Division agree to share the construction cost, 1/3 for the Foundation and 2/3 for the Division. The percentages are based upon their future respective uses of the building.
October 5, 2006: Governor Jim Douglas comes to Plymouth to view model of proposed education center. Additional meetings held with Governor Douglas throughout 2007, 2008 and 2009.
June 2007: $50,000* appropriation approved by the State of Vermont
December 2007: The Foundation is notified by the National Endowment for the Humanities that its $330,000 “We the People” Challenge Grant has been approved.
Winter 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009: Foundation representatives appears before legislative House and Senate Institutions committees to promote appropriations* by the Division.
June 2008: $200,000* appropriation approved by the State of Vermont
October 2008: The Foundation is notified by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development that its $196,000 grant is approved.
June 15, 2009: The Foundation trustees approve a Strategic Plan for the years 2009-2014 which sets as its highest priorities the raising of necessary funds for and the completion of the building project.
June 2009: $1.5 million* appropriation approved from the State of Vermont
2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010: The remaining needed project funds raised by the Foundation were from individuals, businesses, civic group as well as additional grants.
July 8, 2009: First Construction Meeting held by Wright Construction
August 1, 2009: Groundbreaking held for the new building
June, 2010: $250,000* appropriation approved by the State of Vermont
July 14, 2010: Final Construction Meeting held
August 7, 2010: Dedication of new building
*The appropriations were from the Capital Construction Bills, all supported by Governor Douglas and passed by the Vermont Legislature.
Compiled by Mimi Baird, Trustee
Mimi Baird has been a trustee of the Coolidge Foundation since 1994. She was a member of various committees and participated in numerous events. The opening of the President Calvin Coolidge Museum and Education Center is her proudest moment.