HOUSTON, June 4, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- BBVA Compass was named this week as one of the top 10 most arts-friendly businesses in the U.S. by Americans for the Arts, the nation's leading nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the arts and arts education.
The bank and nine other companies nationwide were selected by the Business Committee for the Arts, a division of Americans for the Arts, for its BCA 10: Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts in America for 2014 award. The award honors the businesses' exceptional commitment to the arts through grants, local partnerships, volunteer programs, matching gifts, sponsorships and board membership.
"BBVA Compass has been a champion of the arts for many years because we believe that art changes people's lives," said BBVA Compass Chairman and CEO Manolo Sanchez. "By making the arts accessible in the communities where we operate and by fostering an appreciation for them, we help carry out our vision of building a better future for people."
In Houston, one of the bank's longstanding commitments is to the Houston Symphony Orchestra, and is rooted in the bank's desire to provide access to those who might not otherwise be able to experience the symphony. Twice a year, the bank invites low- to moderate-income students to attend a symphony concert and creates unique opportunities for them to meet the guest artists. Sanchez also serves as a governing director on the HSO's board of trustees, where he has worked to diversify the organization's board and audience through initiatives that resonate with Hispanic communities, most recently through the launch of the Houston Symphony Hispanic Leadership Council.Since 2009, BBVA Compass has provided approximately $5 million in support of the arts across its footprint, with a focus on bringing the arts to low- to moderate-income communities. In 2013, its contributions to arts organizations through the BBVA Compass Foundation and charitable sponsorships — which topped $1 million — made up roughly 20 percent of the bank's annual community investment contributions. The bank has sponsored several remarkable exhibits, including one from Madrid's famed Museo del Prado at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston — the first time a collection of its size was ever shown outside of Spain. The exhibit welcomed more than 52,827 visitors, 6,270 of whom were students. The bank also offered free admission for one month at the Dallas Museum of Art as part of its sponsorship of the Chagall: Beyond Color exhibition. This is the tenth year of the BCA 10 awards. The winners will be honored at a black-tie gala at the Central Park Boathouse in New York City on Oct. 1, 2014. Additional honorees include: