During their forty-five years of living in Phoenix, Cheryl J. Hintzen-Gaines and Ira J. Gaines have supported nearly thirty causes and institutions through their philanthropy. MIM is grateful for their generous contributions that have supported the museum in many ways and helped enhance the cultural vibrancy of the Valley.

Since 2012, the Gaineses have funded general museum operations and a benefit luncheon for MIM’s special exhibition Women Who Rock: Vision, Passion, Power, as well as a recent sponsorship of the Israel exhibit in the Middle East Gallery.

“Music is the language of love and healing,” says Cheryl. “No one says that better than MIM.”

The Israel exhibit was designed in precisely this spirit, as it highlights groups of musicians from disparate groups who strive to promote peace by performing together. It also presents a diverse sampling of musical genres that make up the country’s varied musical soundscape. While discovering Israel’s music and culture, guests can see and listen to a wide variety of instruments, including a beautiful ūd with mother-of-pearl inlay made by renowned Arab-Israeli maker Amin Haddad; shofars, which are made from hollowed-out animal horn and are an iconic emblem of Jewish heritage; and a mihbāj (mortar and pestle) used by Bedouin people to crush coffee beans and to play rhythmic accompaniments for songs and dances.

“We are proud of our heritage and want to share that with visitors in Arizona and from around the world,” says Cheryl.

Ira and Cheryl feel that because they have been fortunate in life, it is important to give back through their philanthropy and they encourage their children to do the same. While Ira is from New York and Cheryl from Chicago, both have come to love Arizona and call it home. They believe the state and its many institutions have much to offer and hope to continue supporting the community for years to come.