Fifty years ago, David Rockefeller, Chairman and CEO of the Chase Manhattan Corporation, gave an address to the National Industrial Conference Board (now The Conference Board). It was The Conference Board’s 50th anniversary, and his words changed how the business community viewed the arts world.
Rockefeller has always been a visionary who understood a half century ago that the arts could go a long way towards helping businesses as well as humanity. He called for businesses to assume a much larger role in supporting the arts for the many ways that they improve both the business and the community. He helped lead the formation of the Business Committee for the Arts (BCA)—since merged with Americans for the Arts—which has encouraged, inspired, and paved the way for businesses to support the arts in the workplace, in education, and in the community.