Minnesota Orchestra’s board walked thin line on finances
Article by: GRAYDON ROYCE , Star Tribune
As deficits worsened, the board worried about the impact of budget red ink on its fundraising.
From the article on the Star Tribune website:
“Balances in 2009 and 2010 would support our state bonding aspirations,” Bryan Ebensteiner, vice president of finance, told the orchestra’s executive committee in September 2009, “while the deficits in 2011 and 2012 would demonstrate the need to reset the business model.” His comments are included in minutes of the finance and executive committees obtained by the Star Tribune.
The board chose to cover operating deficits in 2009 and 2010 with major withdrawals from its investments. Then, in 2011 — on the cusp of labor negotiations with musicians — it “drew down” less money and declared a $2.9 million deficit.