History of the Hett

Opened in 2006, the Hett has quickly taken its place as the premier venue for the arts in Southern Illinois. The Hett is named for Russel E. and Fern M. Hettenhausen of Belleville, IL. Mr. and Mrs. Hettenhausen shared a lifelong love for the arts. Following the death of Russel, Fern sought out a way to memorialize him in a fitting manner. She stepped forward with the lead gift of six million dollars and jump started the effort to construct a new arts center on McKendree’s beautiful campus. Her gift is a lasting tribute to her husband and her commitment to the arts and young people who study here.