Blog Posts for Leadership

Artists’ works—and thinking.

Posted by Ms. Cath Brunner, Jun 13, 2017 0 comments

Sometimes the most innovative and successful solutions come from collaborating with those who do not think the way you do. This is what practitioners in the Pacific Northwest have been willing to do since the beginning of public art programs in the region. The thinking and unique perspectives of artists have been valued as much as or more than the objects they may produce.

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Audience Demographics: The Complexities of Intersectionality

Posted by Kevin Seaman, Jun 13, 2017 0 comments

As an organization that has always been led by a majority of queer people of color, I knew that the National Queer Arts Festival (NQAF) survey needed to be able to capture the unique intersections of the organization’s artists and audiences. I also knew that I wouldn’t be able to neatly categorize the complexity of queer identity … but I could try. The underlying principle of the survey and its synthesis needed to be rooted in multiplicity and intersectionality; to allow complex gender and sexual identity to be celebrated rather than stripped down to fit into a single box.

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Strategizing on the Future of the Creative Workforce

Posted by Guillermina Gonzalez, Jun 12, 2017 0 comments

A recent publication, the Future of Jobs Report, aimed to alert those leaders about current stock of knowledge around anticipated skills needs, recruitment patterns, and occupational requirements on labor market from the perspective of some of the world’s largest employers. Both Creativity and Cognitive Flexibility made the list of top 10 skills. This is great news for education where the arts are present, since they are the springboard of creativity, innovation, and cognitive flexibility; but strategy to implement arts-infused curricula more fully in public education is needed to educate the workforce of the future. The call for strategic local arts advocacy is warranted.

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Thanks and Gratitude for My Arts Advocacy Village

Posted by John Schratwieser, Jun 12, 2017 0 comments

I have worked with hundreds of volunteers, be they board members, letter stuffers, wine servers, budget testimony panelists, and more. We do not achieve status as members of the “beloved community” by singing our own praises, and ignoring the commitment and dedication of those who volunteer their time with us. We do not achieve this by saying “our doors are open to all” and then sitting inside those open doors and waiting for “them” to come. Without those who give of their time and resources freely, we are nothing but another cog in a wheel.

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What Keeps Your Mayor Up at Night: Your Mayor’s Priorities Explained

Posted by Jay H. Dick, Jun 01, 2017 0 comments

Mayors are on the front line of government. If there is a pothole, constituents don’t call the White House or the Governor’s Mansion; they call City Hall. In other words, the buck stops with mayors to provide services to the residents of their cities. So, what do mayors prioritize and/or worry about? Americans for the Arts’ partner, the National League of Cities, just published their 2017 State of the Cities report which analyzed mayors’ State of the Cities Addresses and catalogued the top issues. I was pleased, but not surprised, to see that “Arts & Culture” was one of the five Economic Development sub-topics.

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From Blues to the “Peanutcracker,” Government Support for the Arts Helps Create Access for All

Posted by Robert Lynch, May 25, 2017 0 comments

It’s easy to rattle off numbers, but what does this increase in funding really mean? Great projects across the country will now get to continue. Last year, the NEA recommended more than 2,400 grants in nearly 16,000 communities in every congressional district in the country. A review of NEA grants shows that the majority go to small and medium-sized organizations, and the diversity among these grant recipients is unmatched by any other U.S. funder. One grant program, “Challenge America,” is dedicated to reaching underserved communities—those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability.

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