New downtown Art Gallery receives $1.5 million lead gift from Judith and Norman Alix

In one (or two) strokes of the pen to an oversized symbolic cheque, the Art Gallery of Lambton got what it needed most—a lead gift that took the collective breath away from those attending a special announcement Wednesday morning.

The project,  which some might have said was in a state of uncertainty regarding its efforts to raise a total of $3.5 million from the community, is now $1.5 million closer to reaching that number, thanks to the generosity of Norman and Judith Alix.

Alix, who began his Steeplejack Services business in 1977 and has been an active philanthropist in the community for many years, put his wife Judith's name first when it came to securing naming rights for the Art Gallery project.
The announcement was made in the Gallery's temporary home adjacent to the food court at Bayside Centre in downtown Sarnia.

Norm Alix at the podium

The Judith & Norman Alix Art Gallery now needs just $1 million of the total $9.1 million cost of construction.
The new building, which will preserve the façade of the Thom Building at the corner of Lochiel and Christina St. N., remains under construction but is expected to meet federal funding deadlines (or qualify for extensions), said outgoing Lambton County Warden Jim Burns, who Steve Arnold, the new warden, appointed as honourary fundraising chair.
Sylvia Foreman, who manages the local CAA office, is co-chairing the campaign.
Warden Arnold said the gift is humbling to all involved. "The Alix family has shown great vision and confidence in this important project. The entire community now, and long into the future, will certainly be appreciative of their generosity."
Detailed progress reports on the construction of the Judith & Norman Alix Art Gallery can be seen at

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  • Lisa

    wow! what a generous couple!!!

  • Lorna Schmidt

    Thank you!

  • Jillian Holmes

    Tears of JOY flowed when I heard of your very generous donation. Thank YOU Judy & Norm

  • Leslie

    It is wonderful to see such amazing support for the arts in downtown Sarnia. Thank you to Mr. & Mrs. Alix as well as all the other donors and advocates who have worked so hard to make this happen!

  • Shelly

    What an amazing legacy for our community !

  • Norm

    Now bring a grocery store downtown…

  • gregory

    Many would like that for sure. How come the other grocery stores left Sarnia’s downtown? Any ideas???

  • I agree Norm. When I lived downtown I used the grocery store in the downtown mall and the one in Mitton Village.

  • Now there is a plan.

  • Dan

    I was moved by Judith & Norman Alix generous gift.
    We may not be able to take it with us but we can surely put it to good use and benefit the community.
    you both are a inspiration to me. I do not have that kind of money but i have been inspired to donate at my level to make Sarnia a great place to live and visit for years to come.

  • jd

    Hi Dan. I do believe we met the other day, correct? J.D.