Updates from Johnson County Community College: Major financial donation to support performing arts

The Carlsen Center will soon bear the name Midwest Trust Center after a local company founded by Brad Bergman.

Johnson County Community College has accepted a $1,000,000 donation intended to support the JCCC Performing Arts Series. These funds will also provide scholarships for students studying creative arts at JCCC.

Long-time Supporters

Brad and Libby Bergman have deep roots when it comes to supporting students. Not only have all four of their children attended JCCC, they’ve also co-chaired the largest single fundraising event for JCCC students – the Foundation’s annual Some Enchanted Evening Gala. Brad has also served as Chair of the JCCC Foundation Board of Directors.

The Carlsen Center will soon bear the name Midwest Trust Center after a local company founded by Brad Bergman. Dr. Charles Carlsen and his wife Linda generously agreed to the re-branding of the performing arts complex in recognition of the Bergmans significant contribution.

“Linda and I spent decades of our lives dedicated to growing and expanding opportunities at JCCC for students and for the community,” Dr. Carlsen noted. “When we were approached about the generosity of Brad and Libby, we were honored to coordinate with them to appropriately recognize their gift.”

The Bergmans echoed this commitment to students and the community. “We have been blessed with business success, in part because of those who built institutions in this county like JCCC,” said Brad. “Giving back is part of our DNA and all of the activities that occur in this building benefit Johnson County and the Kansas City metropolitan area. The performing arts help everyone teach, learn and smile.”

Following the unanimous favorable recommendation by JCCC’s Facilities Naming Committee, the Board of Trustees approved the proposed contribution and the facility renaming at its regular monthly meeting on July 16, 2020.

About the Center

Dedicated in 1990, the complex includes Yardley Hall, Polsky Theater, the Bodker Black Box Theater, a recital venue, numerous classrooms and related support facilities. This fall marks the 30th anniversary of the Performing Arts Series at JCCC.

Emily Behrmann, General Manager for the Performing Arts Series, summed up the impact of the Bergmans donation stating, “The JCCC community is proud of the impact of the Performing Arts on our students, our campus and our community over the last 30 years. This gift will continue to expand our legacy of bringing diverse artists from all over the world to our region. I offer my sincere thanks to the Bergmans and the Carlsens for their commitment to JCCC and for their recognition of the power of the Performing Arts.”

More Information

Interested in learning how you can support JCCC students? Check out our Foundation scholarship page for additional opportunities.