When Bradley W. Wells steps into his new position as vice president of finance for the J. Paul Getty Trust on May 1, he knows he'll have $250 million to spend.
As a private foundation, the Getty is required by law to spend 4.25 percent of its $5 billion-plus endowment annually, and Wells will be responsible for overseeing all financial activities for the Trust, including the budget, accounting, risk management, purchasing and contracts.
"We're responsible for making sure that the institution is in a position to implement the operating plan that the trustees and the president have put in place," he said.
Wells comes from the California State University system, where he is assistant vice chancellor, financial services.
He said a part of the budget would be spent on efforts to heighten community involvement through various programs over the next few years. The Trust has "been trying to broaden the level of support and involvement from the community, not only in the museum but also in the research and conservation institutes.
"The board and president will be exploring a variety of means to enhance community involvement," said Wells. "Free admission is certainly one way. Taking that (community involvement) to the next level, getting folks to take advantage of educational opportunities such as the art library, lectures, concerts, readings, etc. is an area the Getty would like to build on."
As far as challenges are concerned, Wells seems to share the concerns of many in the business community. "Probably the most challenging element over the next few years will be accommodating what appears to be changing economic conditions and their inevitable effect on the trust," he said.
Conor DoughertyAdvertising & P.R.
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