The Abbotsford Convent Foundation (ACF) was very saddened to learn of the passing of Anne Kantor AO who with her late husband, Milan Kantor OAM, has been a long-term supporter and friend of the Convent community. Anne passed away at home, Illira, Hamilton, Victoria on 14 September 2022.
Anne Kantor’s support in the years before the Convent was established as Australia’s largest multi-arts precinct was pivotal in enabling the vision to become a reality. Anne’s early philanthropic support for the community campaign to create an arts, cultural and education precinct at the Convent was visionary. Later, her critical pledge of philanthropic support helped persuade the Bracks Government that the Project would be viable.
Through her Dara Foundation, Anne’s philanthropy was “absolutely crucial in persuading the government that we would secure significant philanthropic funds to enable us to create the precinct”, recalls Sally Romanes, former ACF Board member and long-term supporter of the Convent. “Through the Dara gift, we were able to secure funds from the philanthropic and government sectors which was pivotal. Without it, we would not be here today.”
More recently, with Anne Kantor’s support, the Convent completed the restoration of the Sacred Heart building, enabling the reactivation of those heritage spaces for a new community of artists, creatives, and arts organisations. The ACF could not have achieved the creation of the Convent precinct without the vision, support and belief of Anne Kantor AO.
Our deepest sympathy and condolences go to the extended Kantor family. Sally Romanes remembers Anne as a warm, kind, humble and generous philanthropist whose early, ongoing, and substantial support has been transformational for the Convent. Anne will be greatly missed but always remembered by the Convent Board, former Directors, current and former staff, creative community, and the wider Convent community.