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Letter from the President
Of course, the highlight of this past year came in April as we celebrated the grand opening of the Walker's expansion and invited the public back inside our walls for the first time in more than a year. Nearly doubled in size with 260,000 square feet, the new Walker is now able to present all disciplines under one roof. To celebrate this special moment in our history, we welcomed more than 16,000 people to the new facility—including members of the media, donors to our capital campaign, Walker members, and more than 1,000 international guests from museum directors to curators to artists to collectors—over the course of 11 opening events. The peak of the celebration was our public grand opening on Sunday, April 17, with more than 8,000 visitors in attendance. In addition to spending time viewing 7 exhibitions featuring the Walker's collection in 11 galleries, more than 3,000 people experienced the new William and Nadine McGuire Theater during our opening weekend, which featured performances by luminaries such as Philip Glass, Meredith Monk with Theo Bleckmann, and Bill Frisell as well as local artists such as guitarist Steve Tibbetts, HIJACK dance company, and Joe Chvala and the Flying Foot Forum with Ruth MacKenzie. And our refurbished Cinema saw a constant flow of visitors coming specifically for film screenings. For its significant support, I want to thank Target Corporation for helping to make our opening events so successful and memorable. I also want to acknowledge Christie's, Faegre & Benson, Fredrikson & Byron P.A., intoto, the Medtronic Foundation, NetJets, Parsinen Kaplan Rosberg & Gotlieb P.A., Pohlad Companies, RBC Dain Rauscher, Sotheby's, and U.S. Trust for generously supporting our debut.

In addition to the thousands of visitors we greeted in April, we were also happy to welcome five new partners who help make all Walker programming possible. It gives me great pleasure to acknowledge our new Premier Partners for their most generous support during this pivotal year for the new Walker—Best Buy, General Mills, Target, Star Tribune, and WCCO-TV Channel 4.

The past year was an extraordinary one for the Walker and for the city of Minneapolis. The bold headline "Minneapolis Makes a Statement" alongside a photograph of the Walker expansion appeared on the cover of the New York Times' Weekend Arts section (April 15, 2005); it perfectly captured the spirit of what has been happening around the Walker for the past several years. I would like to take this opportunity to especially thank all of the corporations, foundations, and individuals whose generous contributions supported Walker programming during this remarkable period of transition and the construction of our beautiful new home. I also want to thank director Kathy Halbreich for her inspired leadership, the entire Walker staff for their dedication and creativity, and my colleagues on the board for guiding this institution through such an unforgettable year.

Roger L. Hale, President