Office of the Superintendent/President
Trustees Approve New Facility for the Community at IVCAgreement Signed with Rotary Club of Novato for the Bill and Adele Jonas Center IMG_1812-R1.jpg
NOVATO, CA—January 24, 2017—A nine-year search for a suitable location to house a combined community-based facility and Rotary site in Novato came to a close last Tuesday evening at College of Marin’s (COM) Board of Trustees meeting. In a move that will raise the visibility of Indian Valley Campus (IVC) assets and provide benefits to Novato as well as the surrounding areas, College Trustees approved an agreement with Rotary Club of Novato and Novato Rotary Endowment for development and long-term lease of Building 19 at IVC. The agreement sets in motion creation of the Bill and Adele Jonas Center—a facility ideal for events, meetings, training, and a host of other activities.
COM Trustee Brady Bevis was ecstatic at Tuesday’s meeting, "Hooray! This partnership between COM and Rotary Club of Novato is going to be a game changer for the community and for the Indian Valley Campus,” said Bevis. “New energy and activities, including new pools and classes, are recharging IVC. It has been such a privilege to work with Rotary on this project for the benefit of our community.”
Agreed upon space programming includes accommodation for a minimum seating capacity of 250 at 10-person round tables, parking, a raised stage, state-of-the-art audio visual equipment, commercial kitchen and counter area, patio or deck areas, and at least one room for flex space.
As outlined in the agreement, designing the space and contractor selection will be a collaborative effort, with final plans approved in writing by the Rotary Board of Directors and the COM Board of Trustees prior to bidding. Rotary Club of Novato will have use of the center rent-free for its weekly lunch, along with five day-long events and one multi-day event per year, and 10 additional event times per year, if the center is available.
The College will have use of the center during non-Rotary times and will be responsible for scheduling facilities use. This will allow the College to rent the space and hold College-sponsored events, programs, and training when not utilized by Rotary.
The Novato Rotary Endowment, a 501(c)(3) foundation of the Rotary Club of Novato, is providing up to $5 million in hard costs from a generous donation entrusted to the endowment by William “Bill” and Adele Jonas to create a community-based facility for Novato. COM will pay all other costs and provide custodial support as well as short- and long-term maintenance for the facility.
“The ability to partner with an organization like Rotary of Novato has been exactly what the Indian Valley Campus has needed to be a catalyst for future growth of this campus,” said Vice President of Finance and College Operations Greg Nelson. “The ability for the College to connect with the Novato community is an important aspect for us to expand our abilities to serve the students and community of Marin County.”
Interest in utilizing space at the College’s campus in Novato for a center began formally in March 2016 with the Board of Trustees accepting a letter of intent from Rotary Club of Novato and the Novato Rotary Endowment. The letter specified Rotary’s intent to enter into negotiations for the long-term lease of space suitable for renovation and creation of a facility that would serve as a meeting place for Rotary and would also have the capacity to accommodate gatherings, weddings, receptions, and a variety of other functions.
Building 17, the former campus library location, was originally considered as the site to house the center. Conceptual plans exploring how space could be used were presented at the June 21, 2016, meeting of the Board of Trustees. Following that meeting, consideration shifted to Building 19, a larger space that would be a better fit for the envisioned event space. A call for bids from all interested parties was opened, and bids were accepted until close of business on December 14, 2016.
Rotary Club of Novato President Larry Harrison stressed that all the work leading up to this partnership has been about fulfilling the wishes of Bill and Adele Jonas. “Service above self is Rotary’s motto. After nine years of searching, the synergy we felt with the people at College of Marin and the campus setting was wonderful,” said Harrison. “Bill and Adele’s gift to Novato was to create a place where the community could come together and learn. We are very happy to have found a place that shares the same purpose—educating the community—and we are looking forward to the opening.”
The partnership between COM and the Rotary Club of Novato will bring a needed community space to Novato, will expose and introduce the community and surrounding region to all COM’s assets and opportunities at IVC, and will fulfill the legacy of Bill and Adele Jonas.