Background and mission
The B-17 Alliance Foundation is an Oregon nonprofit corporation that provides educational and museum programs to commemorate the men and women who served America during World War II. The centerpiece of the Foundation's efforts is the Lacey Lady, a B-17G bomber that served as a gas station canopy from 1947 to 1991 on Highway 99E in Milwaukie. Over the decades, this iconic aircraft slowly deteriorated from weather, pests, and occasional vandalism. Fear of losing this historical artifact prompted efforts to preserve it as the centerpiece of an educational institution.
AccomplishmentsThe Foundation has achieved a number of milestones since its inception in 2004. These include:
- Completely restoring the Lacey Lady's nose section and ball turret
- Moving the aircraft into a climate-controlled hangar at McNary Field in Salem
- Opening an office and constructing a temporary museum at McNary Field
- Developing a following of more than 8,000 Facebook fans
- Creating and presenting numerous traveling exhibits about the air war
- Creating a library of more than 900 books, 200 magazines, and hundreds of memorabilia
- Professionally videotaping more than 50 personal stories of World War II veterans
- Initiating a monthly Veteran's Coffee Club at the Bomber Restaurant
2016 Capital CampaignThe current "mission in progress" involves:
- Disassembling, cleaning, and inspecting the remaining parts of the aircraft
- Purchasing parts and materials
- Commencing and substantially completing restoration
This segment of our long-range plan is by far the most ambitious and expensive. We estimate approximately $5 million will be necessary to complete these tasks. We have embarked on a new capital campaign to increase our visibility and accelerate our fundraising efforts. As part of this initiative, we developed a brochure and established a matrix of benefits specifically geared to solicit institutional sponsorships. Our board of directors is charged with the bulk of this fundraising effort.