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National Arts Strategies awarded $35,000 from the Knight Foundation Fund of Akron Community Foundation

We are thrilled to share that the National Arts Strategies’ (NAS) Creative Community Fellows program has received $35,000 from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Fund of Akron Community Foundation, to advance community change and cultural entrepreneurship.

Funding will directly support the participation of cultural entrepreneurs from the Akron community in the Creative Community Fellows program.

A national organization, Knight Foundation was founded in Akron, Ohio, and continues to invest in the community through their support of local organizations. We are excited to deepen the support of cultural entrepreneurs from Akron as they define, design, pilot and scale their work.

Creative Community Fellows is designed to support creative individuals working as change-makers in their communities. These Fellows use arts and culture as vehicles to drive physical and social transformations. Over eight-months, Fellows gain access to tools, training and a community of support that helps to fuel their visions for community change and action.

 

About Akron Community Foundation

Celebrating 60 years of building community philanthropy, Akron Community Foundation embraces and enhances the work of charitable people who make a permanent commitment to the good of the community. In 1955, a $1 million bequest from the estate of Edwin Shaw established the community foundation. As of Dec. 31, 2015, it is a philanthropic endowment of nearly $184 million with a growing family of more than 520 funds established by charitable people and organizations from all walks of life. The community foundation and its funds welcome gifts of all kinds, including cash, bequests, stock, real estate, life insurance and retirement assets, just to name a few. To date, the community foundation’s funds have awarded more than $131 million in grants to qualified nonprofit organizations. For more information about Akron Community Foundation or to learn more about creating your own charitable fund, call 330-376-8522 or visit www.akroncf.org.

About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. The foundation believes that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit knightfoundation.org.

 

NAS Awarded $1.5 Million from the Kresge Foundation

The board and staff of NAS are excited to announce that The Kresge Foundation has awarded NAS a multi-year, general operating grant of $1.5 million. Kresge has long been a partner with us, particularly in the broadening of our work in strengthening communities through arts and culture.

A key driver of community building has been our Chief Executive Program. Over the last five years, we have brought together three cohorts of arts and culture CEOs from around the world. These 200 exceptional leaders make up a network of colleagues focused on making real change in their organizations, in their communities and in the field. We are proud to support this network and look forward to expanding it one more time.

In April, applications will open for the fourth and final cohort. Fifty leaders from the US and abroad will move through the one-year program to explore, apply and reflect with their peers, faculty at Harvard Business School and the University of Michigan Ross School of Business and School of Urban Design.

Other work supported by the Kresge partnership includes our Creative Community Fellows and Online Civic Innovators. These programs strengthen and support entrepreneurs, artists and civic innovators who are using arts and culture to build positive community change.

Finally, Kresge’s support will enable us to return to research at a critical time. We will look at changing our communities through intercessions from artists, entrepreneurs and arts organizations working side-by-side, adding meaningful data on what works and why. FSG and researchers from Stanford University will be joining us for this project.

We look forward to the months ahead and are grateful to The Kresge Foundation for their continued support.

 

Announcing a New Creative Community Fellows Funding Partner

CCFWe would like to thank the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation for their $30,000 grant, which will support a cohort of San Jose, California-based Creative Community Fellows.

Creative Community Fellows is developed to support creative individuals working as change-makers in their communities. These Fellows use arts and culture as vehicles to drive physical and social transformations. Over eight-months, Fellows gain access to tools, training and a community of support that helps to fuel their visions for community change and action.

 

About the Knight Foundation’s Work in San Jose, California

As San Jose faces tremendous population growth, Knight is working to support the urbanization of a traditionally sprawling city with a specific focus on Central San Jose. Their investments tap into the region’s creative energy and disruptive history to accelerate the city’s significance as a well-connected, transport-accessible hub for culture and innovation in the South Bay.

Working with partners in the public and private sectors, they support a range of projects from prototypes and pop-ups to in-depth research and sustained organizational support.

Learn more about Creative Community Fellows »

 

Welcome to the New Creative Community Fellows!

They hail from around the world. They build arts vocational skills for adults on the autism spectrum. They create card games that change pedestrian behavior and reduce vehicular accidents. They activate community spaces and host pertinent neighborhood discussions. They are the Creative Community Fellows!

This incredible community of 50 change makers will work with NAS and each other over the next nine months to build projects that will lead to stronger, healthier communities. We received nearly 200 applications from 34 states and 7 different countries. We were amazed by the drive and passion of the applicants and we know they are going to play a part in changing this world.

Each Fellow enters the program with a project that uses arts and culture to design solutions to community problems. NAS provides the tools, training and access to a community of support to help Fellows drive their projects forward. The program curriculum is led by experts and world-renowned thought leaders in social innovation, design thinking, strategy and community development.

Fellows also gain access to and help create a powerful network in which ideas and opportunities flow freely. This network is a powerful one and through it we hope to create ripples that will spur connection throughout the field and promote sustainability.

We want to build and support a community of cultural entrepreneurs and leaders throughout the field. We encourage you to visit the Creative Community Fellows site and share it with your colleagues. In addition to project updates from the Fellows, we will post the content and tools from the program for you to use and share. We hope you will use the tools, share your insights and join this incredible community.

Emily Arden Eakland, Mt. Rainer, Maryland
Bridget Bartolini, South Richmond Hill, New York
Chad Bradford, Little Rock, Arkansas
Erin Bregman, San Francisco, California
Nicolas Cabrera, Boulder, Colorado
Katie Campbell, Little Rock, Arkansas
Crystal Campbell, Belleville, Michigan
Kimberly Coburn, Decatur, Georgia
April Counceller, Kodiak, Alaska
Debasmita Dasgupta, Singapore
Nicolas de la Fuente, Phoenix, Arizona
Julia Devine, Plattsburgh, New York
Jordan Dyniewski, Astoria, New York
Hallie Ertman, Rockville, Maryland
Kristin Fleischmann Brewer, St. Louis, Missouri
Meghan Frank, Denver, Colorado
Jill Freeman, Fairport, New York
Jeremie Gluckman, Guiyang, China
Sarah Gonzales, Tucson, Arizona
Carly Griffith, Charlottesville, Virginia
Megan Hobza, Whittier, California
Mary Hoffman, Alamosa, Colorado
Lauren Latessa, Ellicott City, Maryland
Perryne Lee Poy Lokhandwala, Brooklyn, New York
Daniel Leng, Seattle, Washington
Dessa Lohrey, Atlanta, Georgia
Erik Martinez Resly, Washington, DC
Nikiko Masumoto, Del Ray, California
Charlie Michaels, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Mario Mesquita, Los Angeles, California
Matice Moore, Tucson, Arizona
Mikelle Moore, Sunny Isles Beach, Florida
Tico Moore, Wilmington, Delaware
Miriam Nash, London, United Kingdom
Elena Olascoaga, Nuevo León, Mexico
Aneliese Palmer, Anchorage, Alaska
Sara Potler LaHayne, New York, New York
Julie Potter, San Francisco, California
Laura Ritchie, Durham, North Carolina
Nathalie Sanchez, Los Angeles, California
Ginger Savage, Baker City, Oregon
Aletheia Hyun-Jin Shin, Baltimore, Maryland
Yvonne Shortt, Long Island City, New York
Jessica Solomon, Washington, DC
Sarah Sullivan, Phoenix, Arizona
Nell Taylor, Chicago, Illinois
Christopher Taylor, Flagstaff, Arizona
Joe Tolbert, Knoxville, Tennessee
David White, San Diego, California
Carol Zou, Dallas, Texas

Learn more about the Creative Community Fellows program »

Meet the Fellows »

Join the Creative Community. Sign up to receive updates »

This program is the result of the incredible collaboration and support of The Kresge FoundationUniversity of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice and The Center for Social Impact StrategyArtPlace America and RocketHub.

 

Announcing A New Cohort of 50 Outstanding Community Leaders: The Chief Executive Program

 

We are pleased to announce the latest class of exceptional leaders in The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture. These 50 executives will work with National Arts Strategies and each other over the next year to address their biggest challenges and lead change throughout the arts and culture sector. We received applications from leaders in 32 states and 13 different countries and were astounded by the level and diversity of community work these leaders are undertaking. This is the third class of The Chief Executive Program. It has evolved from the experience of the past two classes and discussions with arts and culture leaders around the world. National Arts Strategies is continuing the program with a focus on leaders of organizations where community is at the heart of the mission.

“Healthy organizations share deep connections with their communities. We’ve seen that leaders who build and maintain a strong sense of local relevance are creating organizations for both the present and the future. We at NAS progress field-wide change by providing the training and support to these leaders. Having experienced this program and bonded as a community, 50 leaders will have the ideas, tools and connections to effect change in their own organizations and to accelerate their work collectively to strengthen communities and the cultural sector,” said NAS CEO Designate Gail Crider.

The Chief Executive Program is built around two learning cycles that help leaders explore, reflect, apply and share concepts that address the two biggest challenges for cultural institutions – making strategic choices that are on-mission and leading change. Beginning in September 2014 and continuing through 2015, the program includes three in-person educational events at Vanderbilt University, at University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and at Sundance Resort, as well as a variety of “at-work” activities designed to help leaders move forward on their own unique objectives and goals. These events and activities are designed to give participants a deeper understanding of the strategic challenges they face, a firm grasp of change leadership and the ability to translate their visions for the future into reality.

Participants in The Chief Executive Program were selected following a highly competitive recruitment process to identify the top executive cultural leaders from around the world whose organizations work closely with communities on creative placemaking initiatives. The leaders chosen to participate in The Chief Executive Program were selected from a wide range of cultural forms, locations, perspectives and experience levels.  These executives have proven themselves to be effective, innovative, collaborative and open-minded.

 

Neil Barclay, Contemporary Arts Center (New Orleans, LA)
Jim Beirne, Live Theatre (Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom)
Michael Bobbitt, Adventure Theatre (Glen Echo, MD)
Jennifer Boomgaarden, South Dakota Symphony Orchestra (Sioux Falls, SD)
Tony Butler, Derby Museums Trust (Derby, United Kingdom)
Polly Carl, HowlRound: A Center for Theater Commons (Boston, MA)
Tim Carroll, Bankstown Youth Development Service (Bankstown, Australia)
Serina Chen, Taipei Arts International Association (Taipei, Taiwan)
Uli Sailer Das, Museum at Prairiefire (Overland Park, KS)
Robert Davidson
, Seattle Aquarium (Seattle, WA)
Gretchen Dietrich, Utah Museum of Fine Arts (Salt Lake City, UT)
Lucinda Einhouse, Beck Center for the Arts (Lakewood, OH)
Ahmed El Attar, Studio Emad Eddin Foundation (Cairo, Egypt)
Patricia Finneran, Story Matters (New York, NY)
Gary Ginstling, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra (Indianapolis, IN)
Daniel Gorman, Shubbak Festival (London, United Kingdom)
Brent Hasty, MINDPOP (Austin, TX)
Jeffreen Hayes, Rebuild Foundation (Chicago, IL)
Cristy Johnston Limon, Destiny Arts Center (Oakland, CA)
Anne Katz, Arts Wisconsin (Madison, WI)
Geoffrey Kershner, Endstation Theatre Company (Lynchburg, VA)
Karen Kienzle, Palo Alto Art Center (Palo Alto, CA)
Scott Kratz, 11th Street Bridge Park (Washington, DC)
Lex Leifheit, SOMArts (San Francisco, CA)
Sheila Lewandowski, Chocolate Factory Theater (Long Island City, NY)
Frank Little, City of Edinburgh Council (Edinburgh, Scotland)
María Claudia López
, Ministry of Culture (Bogotá, Colombia)
Karen Mack, LA Commons, A Project of Community Partners (Los Angeles, CA)
Jeff McCarter, Free Spirit Media (Chicago, IL)
Lynne McCormack, City of Providence, Department of Art, Culture + Tourism (Providence, RI)
Hope McMath, Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens (Jacksonville, FL)
Tanner Methvin, Africa Centre (Cape Town, South Africa)
Andreas Mitisek, Long Beach Opera (Long Beach, CA) and Chicago Opera Theater (Chicago, IL)
Donna Neuwirth, Wormfarm Institute (Reedsburg, WI)
Adam Philipson, Count Basie Theatre (Red Bank, NJ)
Kelly Pollock, Center of Creative Arts (St. Louis, MO)
Michael Rohd, Sojourn Theatre and Center for Performance and Civic Practice (Evanston, IL)
Abe Rybeck, The Theater Offensive: OUT in Your Neighborhood (Boston, MA)
Sue Schardt, Association of Independents in Radio (Boston, MA)
Roger Schmidt
, Sitka Fine Arts Camp (Sitka, AK)
Michael Seiwerath
, Capitol Hill Housing Foundation (Seattle, WA)
Michael Shanklin, Kidspace Children’s Museum (Pasadena, CA)
Scott Showalter
, Oregon Symphony (Portland, OR)
Connie Spreen, Experimental Station (Chicago, IL)
Tracy Straus, Celebrate the Beat (Denver, CO)
Alicia Sutton
, Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona (Phoenix, AZ)
Clyde Valentín, SMU Meadow Arts + Urbanism Initiative (Dallas, TX)
Carol Varney, Bay Area Video Coalition (San Francisco, CA)
Gerd Wuestemann
, Acadiana Center for the Arts (Lafayette, LA)



Learn more about The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture »

Development of The Chief Executive Program was made possible by the support of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Fidelity Foundation and The Kresge Foundation.

 

Application Deadline for The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture is Approaching

Applications for The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture are due July 17! For our third class of executives in The Chief Executive Program, we seek curious and collaborative CEOs who are change agents working at the heart of their communities. Join this incredible community of chief executives from around the world to gain ideas, tools and connections to collectively strengthen the cultural sector, apply today.

This one year program will serve an international group of 50 outstanding CEOs whose organizations work closely with communities on creative placemaking initiatives. Participants will come together at Vanderbilt University, University of Michigan Ross School of Business and Sundance Resort to work with leading professors, NAS and each other to get a deeper understanding of the strategic challenges they face, a firm grasp of change leadership and the ability to translate their visions for the future into reality.

Have questions about the program or application process? Ask National Arts Strategies’ Director, Sunny Widmann this Friday from 3-4 pm ET via artstrategies.org/hangout

All participants in The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture receive a fellowship covering the full cost of tuition. Participants are responsible for their own travel costs to in-person events.

Learn more about The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture >>

Join the community and apply by July 17 >>

 

Applications for The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture are now being accepted!

We are excited to announce that we are continuing The Chief Executive Program with a new class focused on leaders of organizations where community is at the heart of the mission. We are now accepting applications for The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture. If you are a curious and collaborative executive using culture to address issues in your community, apply today.

The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture has evolved from our experience with the first two classes and from our discussion of the role of arts and culture with leaders from around the world. We’ve seen that connecting and serving the community is crucial to cultural organizations. We want to connect and support leaders whose organizations are working with communities to use culture to respond to local needs. Through this program, 50 exceptional chief executives will engage individually and among a network of peers to broaden their thinking and tackle the critical challenges facing the field. Participants will leave the program with the ideas and tools to take action and effect change in not only their organizations, but across the field.

Experience

The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture is built around two learning cycles that will help leaders explore, reflect, apply and share concepts that address the two biggest challenges for cultural institutions – making strategic choices that are on-mission and leading change. During the program, participants will come together for three in-person events followed by exercises and tools designed to help leaders move forward on their own unique objectives and goals. The first convening will be this fall. Learn more about the Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture experience »

Selection

We seek exceptional chief executives who exhibit curiosity, openness, eagerness to invest in a learning community and willingness to devote the necessary time to program activities and relationships. We look for leaders interested in exploring and implementing innovative solutions rather than maintaining the status quo. Through a competitive selection process, we will identify 50 chief executives from a wide range of art and cultural forms, locations and perspectives to participate in this 1-year program.

All participants of The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture will receive a fellowship covering the full cost of tuition. Participants will be responsible only for their travel costs to in-person events. Learn more about our selection process

 

Learn more about The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture »

Apply to participate in The Chief Executive Program: Community and Culture by July 17 »

 

National Arts Strategies Announces Leaders Chosen to Participate in The Chief Executive Program

National Arts Strategies is pleased to announce the participation of 50 exceptional leaders in the second class of The Chief Executive Program. Building on the success of the program’s first cohort, National Arts Strategies continues the program to help bring together cultural leaders from around the world to explore new ways to tackle the most complex and critical challenges facing the field. By the end of the program, these 50 leaders will have the ideas, tools and connections to effect change in their own organizations and to work collectively strengthen the cultural field.

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