Thinking About Nominations to Advisory Councils? Here are a Few Reasons Why You Should

Posted by Stephanie Hanson, Sep 28, 2010 0 comments

Each year when we announce the opportunity to nominate yourself or a colleague to serve on an Americans for the Arts advisory council, the staff liaisons to those councils tend to get a wide variety of great questions from the field.  Questions such as:

  • Do I have to be a member of Americans for the Arts to be on a council? Answer:  Yes
  • How large are your councils?  Answer:  15 members
  • What time commitment is expected from council members?  Answer:  Click Here
  • If I’m elected to an advisory council, can I tell Bob Lynch what to do?  Answer:  No (okay, just kidding, we’ve never received that question)

A question we rarely get, and would love to answer, is:  Why should I nominate myself or someone else for an advisory council?  Here are a few thoughts to consider if you’re contemplating this opportunity:

  • Community Leadership

Being on a national council is a great way to be able to provide resources and in depth knowledge to your community.  Americans for the Arts council members work on issues that affect the field as a whole.  This work can help spark ideas for solutions that you can bring back to your own organizations and communities.  


  • Connection to Peers
    As a part of one of the 15-member advisory councils, you have the opportunity to learn from your fellow council members, as well as members of the three other councils.  Perhaps your organization is exploring a program that an organization in another city or state has experience with.   In person meetings and regular conference calls keep you connected with your peers, allowing for many mentorship opportunities. 
  • Field Advancement
    Americans for the Arts turns to our council members first to help us present webinars, sessions as conferences, and write blog posts.  By offering your expertise, you can be a part of advancing our field through technical assistance and other Council project activities.  Being seen as an expert on a specific topic can lead to other speaking and writing opportunities, and provide you recognition in the field.
  • Opportunity to Give Back
    You didn’t get to where you are in your career without access to a community, mentors, and individuals advocating on your behalf.  Now is your chance to be that mentor and advocate on someone else’s behalf.  We all know that the arts community is a small world, but it’s hard to break in and learn what you need to know to succeed.  You can give back by providing support and resources to the field. 
  • Practice Leadership
    Some people are born leaders, but everyone needs to practice it.  All Americans for the Arts Council Members are leaders in their respective fields and have the opportunity to assist Americans for the Arts’ efforts both nationally and locally.  For seasoned, mid-career, and emerging leaders, council membership is an occasion to practice many of the aspects of strong leadership, including consensus building, listening, and speaking skills. 

We hope these reasons will encourage you to nominate either yourself, a member of your staff, or a colleague to one of the Americans for the Arts Advisory Councils:  Arts Education, Emerging Leaders, Private Sector, or Public Art

Check out all the information you need to know, and download the nomination form!  Nominations are due October 5!

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