Big things are brewing at the Music Center where Chief Executive and President Rachel Moore is about to take the wraps off an extensive renovation to the facility’s 53-year-old central plaza. After a $41 million, 20-month overhaul, the space will reopen to the public on Aug. 28. A few days later, Labor Day weekend will see the space play host to a variety of free events for the public. The redesign was handled by downtown-based Rios Clementi Hale Studios, which also renovated the Mark Taper Forum and Grand Park. The new layout expands the capacity of the plaza, which stretches between the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and the Mark Taper Forum, and features the addition of Abernethy’s restaurant, Mullin Wine Bar and the coffee bar Go Get Em Tiger. The redesign reflects Moore’s goal to provide a venue that caters to a diverse region — a sort of new public square. “The Music Center’s vision is to deepen the cultural life of every resident of Los Angeles County,” Moore said in an email. “While highly aspirational, our vision is achievable if we embrace a diversity of ideas, backgrounds and viewpoints.” The project, Moore added, aligns with “a commitment I made when I became the president and CEO of The Music Center in 2015 — a commitment to all stakeholders of this vital arts institution that we will embrace and engage with all who make up our great County.” Efforts to enhance diversity are deeply ingrained in Moore’s management style. “While it takes much to be a successful leader, those who put diversity, equity and inclusion front and center, and who do so because it’s not just a business imperative but a moral one, will ultimately rise above all others.”
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Giving a roar of approval to the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, which announced the hiring of Denise Verret as its permanent director. She’s the zoo’s first female African American director. Verret, who acted as interim director while the City Council conducted a candidate search for the permanent role, served as the zoo’s deputy director since 2000. She’s taking on an elephant-sized job — the zoo attracts more than 2 million visitors annually and houses more than 1,400 animals. She’ll also oversee the upcoming redesign and redevelopment project to overhaul and update the zoo’s 133-acre campus in Griffith Park, including the replacement of outdated buildings and structures.
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Downtown-based real estate giant CBRE Group Inc. will have a new global president of project management starting next week. Jim Dobleske joins CBRE after 17 years at Jones Lang LaSalle Inc., most recently as global head of enterprise sales for JLL’s corporate solutions business. He’ll be based in Charlotte, N.C.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this column misspelled the name of Abernethy’s restaurant.
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