Motown Records will forever be embedded in the fabric of music and its founder is ensuring that the record label’s legacy prevails for generations to come. According to Crain’s Detroit Business, music mogul Berry Gordy has donated $4 million towards the expansion of the Motown Museum.
The museum—which is housed inside of the record label’s first headquarters—captures the history, impact and influence that Motown has had on the music industry and beyond. It highlights Gordy’s entrepreneurial start and features the narratives of legendary artists like The Jackson 5, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and The Temptations who were instrumental in the success of the label. In October 2016, the museum revealed plans for a $50 million, 50,000-square-foot expansion. As part of the project, there would be more interactive exhibits, a performance theater, recording studios, retail shops and meeting spaces added.
So far there has been $18 million raised and Gordy’s contribution is the largest from an individual donor. “I’m excited about the future of Motown Museum and happy to support it,” 89-year-old Gordy said in a release. “Not only will the expanded museum entertain and tell the stories of talented and creative people who succeeded against all odds, but it will also inspire and create opportunity for people to explore their dreams the way I did mine. I couldn’t be prouder to be a part of that.” Other donors include the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, DTE Energy Foundation, and Ford Motor Co.
Leaders of the museum say they want to expand their impact in the local community by fostering job creation and economic growth. Robin Terry—who serves as the chairman and CEO of the museum—says that with Gordy’s contribution the institution can move forward with solidifying itself as a world-class entertainment and educational destination.