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January 29, 2007

Acting Chancellor Blumenthal visits MBEST center

Acting Chancellor Blumenthal joined in celebrating the opening of an exhibit by two local artists at UC’s Monterey Bay Education, Science, and Technology (MBEST) Center on January 26.

Photo of George Blumenthal with artists

Photographer Steve Zmak, left, and sculptor Richard Mayer, right, join Acting Chancellor George Blumenthal at the MBEST Center in Marina. Mayer's work "Stanley" is at right.

The event was an opportunity for Blumenthal to meet community leaders from the Monterey Bay region and tenants of the MBEST Center, on former Fort Ord land in Marina.

Works by Sculptor Richard Mayer and nature photographer Steve Zmak are now on exhibit at the center's Atrium Gallery, which regularly showcases local and regional artists.

Mayer has long been a local leader and advocate for developing an arts habitat community at the former Fort Ord. He is now retiring, and has given a permanent loan of his work to the MBEST Center.

Photographer Steve Zmak captures stunning images of California’s wild places and donates 10 percent of the proceeds from his work to nonprofits working for the environment. 

The event marked a new collaboration between MBEST and the CSU Monterey Bay museum studies program. Several CSUMB students in the program were closely involved in producing the exhibit.  MBEST is on former Fort Ord land in Marina, at 3239 Imjin Road.

Speaking at the opening, Blumenthal acknowledged the accomplishments of MBEST founding Director Lora Lee Martin, saying that the center would not exist without her unwavering commitment to the excellence in research and higher education at UCSC and around the Monterey Bay.

Those joining Blumenthal included Congressman Sam Farr, Monterey County Supervisor Jerry Smith, chair of the Fort Ord Reuse Authority Board, CSU Monterey Bay President Dianne Harrison, Monterey Peninsula College President Doug Garrison, UCSC vice chancellor of research Bruce Margon, and Dean Steve Kang, dean of the Baskin School of Engineering at UCSC. 

Farr said the event was an example of the vision of the MBEST Center to be “a place where creative people come together to create new ideas.” He noted the importance of the MBEST Center as a leader and facilitator of regional collaborations and new partnerships.

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