Rockport Center for the Arts | "Seven Questions with Patricia B. Moore"

Photo by Pamela Fulcher
In May 2017, Rockport Center for the Arts celebrated 48 years of existence. Over the course of five decades the arts non-profit has earned a significant place across the State of Texas and around the United States of America as a unique venue where fine art is nurtured, thrives, and evolves. For the past two decades, the organization’s growth has been unprecedented; many new initiatives were started during that time. Located in the heart of the community, the Art Center celebrates and encourages art and education. One woman has been a consistent fundraising force during these two decades, a pillar of strength, and a tireless supporter of the arts. In this interview piece, Seven Questions with Patricia B. Moore, she tells the story of her long and fruitful collaboration with the Art Center. Sailing into the Future is the theme of this year’s Art Auction Gala, and Pat Moore, as most of her friends know her, is the deserving honoree.


1. What brought you to Rockport?

My husband fished with a group of men from Houston who had houses in Rockport, so in early 80s we started to look for a vacation home in Key Allegro. I also love to fish so it was a perfect place to spend time with family and friends.

2. Who was responsible for your involvement with Rockport Center for the Arts?

Annell Livingston, a friend who is now an artist in Taos, moved to Rockport in the 90s and she became involved with Art Center so I was introduced to this wonderful organization but I was still spending only weekends in Rockport. By the last years of 90s I started to attend the Kickoff for Tour of Homes and the Party on July 4th weekend (Party was held in parking lot in front of Art Center). In 2000 we sold our company in Houston and we moved to our retirement home in Harbor Oaks. Tom and I attended Art Auction Party with Marcia and Judd Miller that year and the rest is history. Marcia introduced me to Lola L. Bonner at the party and within 2 weeks I was asked to become a member of board. For those of you who knew Marcia it was a set up!

3. What are you passionate about?

Photo by Pamela Fulcher
Our Rockport artists are vital to our community and RCA. We must support them and help them grow and thrive. Beverly Trifonidis was instrumental in creating support and thriving relationships between the Art Center and this part of our community. Luis has worked diligently to maintain these friendships and I believe that our Poster Artists' support must continue, they must continue to be recognized for there is a wonderful dedication among this group that helps make our biggest fund raiser of the year the great success. Poster artists continue to generate excitement and are the basis for our strength.

4. What is your greatest accomplishment?

Raising three sons and a daughter that have great family values who love their country, respect others, and support their community.  So very proud of my family and grandchildren and the support they give me. In 2000 we had made a commitment to build a world class sculpture garden and Margaret Sue Rust had stepped up to buy the first sculpture, Rites of Spring.  We then contracted the Moroles’ Lighthouse Fountain and thus my fundraising began.   Mary Lucille Jackson and I worked on the grants and then I went to the community to finish the job of finding individual donors.  It then became a passion to add sculptures and place them in perfect locations in our garden to enhance our waterfront for the many tourists that come each year.  I have worked with three directors and first hand with many of the people who have donated to this project.  I love the sculpture garden and the placement of our pieces going out to the bay or being windswept by our prevailing wind.  It is a perfect addition to our waterfront.

5. What about your accomplishments as an underwriter and sponsor chair?

I have worked hard to develop relationships for the Art Center and I'm forever grateful to each person, family, company who has joined in supporting my passion.  I strive to always stay in contact with these folks who are a part of the campaign whether it be for only a membership at the Art Center, a donation for our auctions, or a contributor of money.  Most of all I always try to maintain strong relationships with all these folks so they know how important each is to our success.

6. What has been your greatest challenge?

The search committee to hire a new art director after Beverly resigned was a lot of work and took hours of time reviewing resumes, interviewing, meeting, etc.  Though a very long and difficult process the committee had a great vision to help us continue to grow and succeed.  I hope all will agree that our choice and ultimately the choice of the board to hire Luis was a good choice and contributed to the development of our staff and programs.

7. What do you see as the greatest change in the Art Center over the past two decades?

We have grown from a small town organization to a prominent association known and respected throughout the state and country.  Rockport Center for the Arts keeps the community together through our many programs, exhibits, and community activities.

Kind words abound about Pat Moore’s ability to galvanize a community around the arts.  Jean Giesey, current President of the Board of Directors of the Art Center says “When I first met Pat Moore, I immediately knew she was a force with which to be reckoned!  Her years of fundraising acumen are legendary.  So I first met her as a fierce friend of the Rockport Center for the Arts but more importantly came to know her as a personal friend.”  

Former Executive Director Beverly Trifonidis (2005-2015) states “Pat Moore believes in our Rockport artists, surrounds herself with their art, and lives out art in life. So... fill up your car's gas tank, all of your cars, stock up your frig to serve few or many on a moment’s notice, diversify your money, because you understand business and you mean business, have your guest room ready for days or for weeks for artists you've never met, roll up your sleeves and ensure those around you have their sleeves rolled up, live in the moment while always considering the Art Center's future, engage your family, your friends and any new acquaintances in Art Center activities, work tirelessly throughout the year on behalf of it, laugh a lot, give people respect for their commitment to the Art Center, and open your heart and show how generosity looks, many times when no one is aware...then you would be walking in Pat's shoes. Pat's loyalty and vision, and Pat and Tom's family, are central to Rockport Center for the Arts being a rare family, and creating a living environment for artists and for art to inspire us.”

Current Executive Director Luis Purón says “I first met Pat in April of 2015.  She made arrangements to give up her guest house for my stay while I was being interviewed for the position. She invited me in for a cocktail. Beverly Trifonidis was there and I had an impromptu pre-interview with both of them. She had a very matter of fact way of being, genuine, confident, lots of personality and presence.  It’s been over two years since we initially met and she has never stopped helping me; she seems to show up or call me when I need her guidance most.  Things happen when Pat is around, great things.”

On Friday June 30, Rockport will assemble to party inside the largest air conditioned tent in South Texas. A crowd of six-hundred will pay homage to the woman whose generosity knows no bounds. Hip, hip, hooray to Pat Moore!  Join us.


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