Best Power Couple (2009)

Phillip and Patricia Frost

Phillip and Patricia Frost aren't exactly new to the Miami philanthropy game. Phillip, chairman of a Miami-based pharmaceuticals company, and Patricia, a retired elementary school principal, have given millions to local nonprofits and served on the boards of the Florida International University Foundation and the Smithsonian. Hell, they even already have a whole school named after them at the University of Miami, after they gave a record $33 million to the School of Music in 2003.

But it's their latest contribution that might leave the longest legacy in the Magic City — and that marked them as our power couple of the year. With an undisclosed gift, they helped make the FIU's Phillip and Patricia Frost Art Museum — which opened in November — one of the most artistically and architecturally significant newcomers on Miami's arts scene in years.

The crescent-shaped museum, built from Chinese granite, steel, and glass by Tampa's HOK Architects, is an instant icon at FIU's Tamiami campus — and it serves as a much-needed centerpiece for Latin American and modern art in Miami.

The name says it all — without the Frosts, the newest jewel in a city rocketing into the national arts conversation simply wouldn't have happened.


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