PORTAGE PARK — The executive director of the National Veterans Art Museum will step down next month, officials said Wednesday.
After overseeing the museum's move from the South Side to a revitalized Six Corners, Levi Moore said he would return to governmental affairs consulting while remaining active with the museum that showcases art by veterans as a volunteer.
"We've had some real big victories," Moore said, adding that he was looking forward to returning to his roots in governmental affairs.
Moore also resigned Jan. 1 as president of the Six Corners Association, which acts as the chamber of commerce for the businesses near Irving Park Road and Cicero and Milwaukee avenues.
Gale Fabisch of Clark Fabisch Realty, whose family has owned property at Six Corners for decades, will take over as president, association executive director Ed Bannon said.
"Moore is going to be missed," Bannon said, adding that the group relied on his experience as the second-in-command of the state's economic development commission to transform Six Corners, once the premier shopping district outside the Loop, into an arts and culture mecca in an effort to reverse decades of decline and to fill empty storefronts.
"He brought a lot to the table," Bannon added.
The executive director of the museum since 2010, Moore did an excellent job managing its move to 4041 N. Milwaukee Ave., said Lionel Rabb, the president of the museum board.
Moore also increased the amount of grants the museum received by nearly 200 percent and increased the number of programs offered at the museum, Rabb said.
"He had quite a few wins," Rabb said.
Ald. John Arena (45th) has credited the museum, founded in 1983, with helping jump start the renaissance of Six Corners.
The museum's board is conducting a search for Moore's replacement, who is expected to be named next month, Rabb said.
In addition to Fabisch, Jackie Intres of Filament Theatre Ensemble will become the Six Corners Association's secretary and Franklin Jones, a Farmers Insurance agent, will be the board's treasurer, Bannon said.
The new board will work to ensure that the momentum at Six Corners started in 2014 continues, as more than two dozen businesses opened in the last year, Bannon said.
Two major pieces of property in the shopping district are slated to be redeveloped in 2015.
The former Bank of America building at Irving Park Road and Cicero and Milwaukee avenues is expected to be torn down to make way for a new development of shops and stores dubbed the Pointe at Six Corners.
In addition, plans to turn a former Bank of America building at the western edge of the shopping district at 4901 W. Irving Park Road into a grocery store and gym while saving a historic theater, are expected to move forward.
The association administers Six Corners' Special Service Area, which levies a tax on businesses to pay for economic development initiatives such as beautification projects and marketing efforts.
Plans are in the works for more beautification and streetscape improvements at Six Corners, as well as more murals, directional signs and planters, Bannon said.
The association is also hoping to convince city officials to install a crosswalk on Cicero a half-block north of Irving Park Road to make it safe for pedestrians to cross mid-block, as many do anyway, Bannon said.
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