News in 2008

Jackie Lee Houston honored by City of Palm Springs
Convention Center Plaza to be named for Film Festival Board Vice Chairman

City of Palm Springs
May 30, 2008

A triangle piece of property that will be developed as the main entry plaza to the Palm Springs Convention Center has been named for philanthropist Jackie Lee Houston.

"You meet people throughout your lifetime that you admire -- Jackie Lee is one," Palm Springs Mayor Steve Pougnet said at Wednesday's City Council meeting. "I think at this time, it's a perfect opportunity to single out Jackie Lee Houston and name this future plaza after her."

The Council reviewed a conceptual design of the 1.77-acre parcel that will be transformed into a plaza with a circular drive and a desert-landscape park area where visitors can sit and relax. This new plaza will create a sense of arrival for people coming to the Convention Center.

More detailed plans will be forthcoming, but Wednesday the Council unanimously approved the Jackie Lee Houston Plaza name.

Pougnet said that it is fitting that the Plaza carry Jackie Lee Houston's name because of her support of the Palm Springs International Film Festival, which rolls out the red carpet at the Convention Center, welcoming the world's finest actors, filmmakers, directors and producers.

The resolution naming the future plaza listed several of the charities supported by Ms. Houston, including the AIDS Assistance Program, Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Springs International Film Festival and the Stroke Recovery Center. She also has established the annual Jackie Lee Houston Scholarship which benefits residents in the Coachella Valley and the City of Palm Springs, including post-graduates pursuing careers in design.

Mayor pro tem Ginny Foat and Councilmembers Chris Mills, Rick Hutcheson and Lee Weigel all agreed Ms. Houston was deserving of the honor and that naming the Plaza for her was a fitting way to thank her for her generosity and contribution to Palm Springs.

Construction of the plaza is expected to get underway sometime next year.