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December 9, 2009 > Symphony Awarded Challenge Grant

Symphony Awarded Challenge Grant

Submitted By Susan Rose

The Fremont Symphony Orchestra received a $22,500 Challenge Grant from Steve and Edith Pietkiewicz to support the orchestra's programs. For every $2 in new and increased donations the orchestra raises, the Pietkiewiczs will donate $1.

Performing arts organizations are struggling due to declining donations from corporations, foundations, governments and individual donors. Board President and local attorney Pauline Weaver said, "The Symphony is deeply grateful to the Pietkiewicz family for this generous gesture. This is a golden opportunity for the orchestra and we are determined to raise matching funds."

According to General Manager Susan Rose, "The Pietkiewicz Challenge Grant raises the bar for the orchestra in terms of fundraising and reaching out to new donors and audiences." This is the second Challenge Grant that the orchestra has received in its 46-year history. In 1982, a challenge grant from The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation transformed the orchestra from a volunteer community group to a professional nonprofit.

Mr. Pietkiewicz is a Vice President and General Manager at the high-tech firm Linear Technology Corp., based in Milpitas. He was recently featured in the Wall Street Journal. An accomplished classical and jazz pianist, Mr. Pietkiewicz serves on the Fremont Symphony Board of Directors. A mother of three, Mrs. Pietkiewicz is an advocate for arts education. She says, "We want to make a difference in the lives of others through music. Through this Challenge Grant, we hope to motivate people to have a sense of ownership in the orchestra and to donate to ensure the Fremont Symphony's long-term viability."

The Fremont Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1964 and annually serves over 7,000 people in southern Alameda County and northern Santa Clara County. Orchestra programs include an evening concert series, holiday Nutcracker Ballet with live orchestra, Young Artist Competition, Young Composers Competition, and recital and ensemble performances in the community. To donate to the Challenge Grant or for more information, visit or call (510) 794-1659.

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