Blog Posts for Leadership

Fostering Dialogue and Taking Action: Creatively Breaking Down Barriers is an Ensemble Effort

Posted by Jordan Campbell, Sep 10, 2018 0 comments

In an age of unpaid internships, I have done my fair share of work for the “professional experience” it might bring. (I’ve also been asked to do arts-related events for free or at a very low cost—presumably because I am a young person and might want the “exposure.”) I have experienced some of these systemic barriers on my professional journey. It is my hope that arts education can begin to pull away from that linear mode of thinking and gravitate more toward the concept highlighted in our research—a cyclical leadership—that can foster authentic, diverse, and collaborative work environments. This year, as a candidate for the Arts in Education Ed.M Program at Harvard University, I seek to continue this discussion with my academic cohort of teaching artists, arts managers, curators, and nonprofit leaders. We each have a role to play in breaking down the barriers for emerging leaders. 

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Embracing Cyclical Mentorship and Our Commitment to Arts Education

Posted by Mr. Jeff M. Poulin, Sep 10, 2018 0 comments

Over the past two summers, I have had the unique privilege to work with three incredible mentees through the internship program here at Americans for the Arts. With all three of these individuals, I worked hard to impart much of my knowledge about arts education, the nonprofit arts sector, the inner working of Washington, D.C.’s advocacy infrastructure, and much more. However, it was through these unique relationships that I also learned from them and grew as a person; we were engaging a process of cyclical mentorship. Often, we approach the leadership pipeline in the field as a departing of knowledge from the older generation to the younger. This process, though utilized effectively in the cultural sphere, leaves much to be desired. As we work together in the field, we must be aware of our own advancement in the pipeline and how we are interacting in relation to other operating alongside us. 

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Advancing Diversity by Empowering the Arts in Our Nation’s Education Decision-making

Posted by Robert Lynch, Sep 10, 2018 0 comments

As young people around the country return to school, educators take the helm of their classrooms, and educational leaders build learning communities that inspire creative and innovative teaching and learning, the arts education community along with public and private sector leaders join together once again to celebrate National Arts in Education Week. As this school year begins, local school districts and state education leaders have more resources and policies under their supervision than ever before. Our job is to encourage, enable, and empower advocates to get to the negotiating table to strengthen arts education! They need to hear from us. Starting this week, we should get arts education leaders at every table for every decision impacting education and certainly arts education from here on out! 

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Shatter Some Glass

Posted by Molly Smith, Sep 07, 2018 0 comments

How can the arts empower other women to take leadership roles? When you find your passion, believe that no one can stop you. Search for adventure. The old adage—there are no small parts, only small actors. The American regional theater movement was founded by women—three women in three different cities across the country, Margo Jones (Dallas), Nina Vance (Houston), and Arena Stage’s Zelda Fichandler in Washington, DC. I am honored to have taken the helm of Zelda’s flagship. It’s important to remember that these women were at the forefront of an entire movement—while we struggle with gender parity among current directors of regional theaters, the movement itself owes everything to these three women. Any woman trying to burst forward should take strength from that. And remember and speak their names. We are here because they took action.

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Nonprofit Arts Women Rock

Posted by Ms. Mara Walker, Sep 04, 2018 0 comments

Throughout this fall, Americans for the Arts is curating a blog series featuring the voices of women in leadership roles at nonprofit arts organizations. It would be easy to say that we are holding this blog series because of the recent surge in the women’s movement, or because today women are still not paid as much as men for their work and deserve a spotlight, or because it would be sport to call out the men who have abused their power over women. The truth is, we simply felt it would be amazing to lend a microphone to these women to hear their perspectives about what it means to be a woman in an influential role in the arts today. It is our hope that through these blogs, other women will feel empowered to take on leadership roles and in turn encourage other women to do the same.

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Pre-Election Activities for Arts Organizations

Posted by Mr. Jay H. Dick, Aug 28, 2018 0 comments

Recently, I sat down with former Massachusetts Senate President Stan Rosenberg to talk about what arts organizations should be doing in preparation of the upcoming elections. Here are highlights of our conversation.

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