Pittsburg State University today announced that it has named the theater within the Bicknell Family Center for the Arts in honor of local arts patrons and philanthropists, Dotty and Bill Miller. The naming of the Dotty and Bill Miller Theater was made possible by a generous gift from the Nancy and Richard Miller family and the Faith and Dick Coleman family.
“Nancy and Richard Miller and Faith and Dick Coleman have long supported our university throughout the years, and, up until now, they have asked to remain anonymous,” said Pittsburg State President Steve Scott. “It’s so fitting to now be able to publicly acknowledge their contributions and to thank them for their extraordinary generosity.”
Bill Miller, who died in 2002 at the age of 90, began a lifelong career in photography in 1939 with the opening of a small studio in downtown Pittsburg. From those humble beginnings, he would go on to build Miller’s Professional Imaging, the largest professional lab organization in the United States.
Dotty Miller, Bill’s wife, continues his legacy of support for their city.
“Dotty and Bill are well known for their work ethic, appreciation for the arts and love of Pittsburg,” said Dick Coleman. “Our gift follows their example of supporting what you believe in. We’re excited to be a part of such a wonderful facility and are looking forward to attending our first performance in the Miller Theater.
The Bicknell Center will provide Pittsburg State University with its first true performance facility since 1978, when deterioration forced the closure of Carney Hall. In addition to the Dotty and Bill Miller Theater, the facility will also house a 1,100-seat performance hall, a 3,400-square-foot art gallery, a grand lobby, and reception hall.
Construction is scheduled for completion later this month. A special ribbon cutting ceremony will be held at 1 p.m. on Sunday, December 7, and is open to the public.
“This facility has generated tremendous support from donors throughout the region,” said President Scott. “We encourage everyone to join us on December 7 to celebrate this historic moment.”
The ribbon cutting event will include a special performance by the Pittsburg State University Choir and extensive tours of the Bicknell Center. Doors will open at 12:30 p.m. on December 7 with the event starting at 1 p.m. Tours will be offered until 3 p.m.
For additional information please visit pittstate.edu.
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