GRANTMAKERS IN THE ARTS SELECTS EDWIN TORRES AS NEW CEO
Edwin Torres, deputy commissioner of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, has been selected by the Grantmakers in the Arts board of directors as the organization’s new president & CEO. Torres will become GIA’s third CEO after a national search for a successor to current CEO Janet Brown, who will step down at the end of 2017.

Read the full announcement.

Posted on June 27, 2017 by Monica

On Monday, June 26, GIA’s board of directors sent a letter to all members of Congress on behalf of GIA’s membership in support of continued funding of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

Posted on June 23, 2017 by Monica

In an email to colleagues, Executive Director Carlton Turner announced his decision to end his tenure at Alternate ROOTS effective February 2018.

I have spent the past thirteen years as a ROOTS' staff member, in service to the ROOTS mission of supporting artists working at the intersection of arts and social justice. In that time, I have seen the organization grow its roots deeper in its founding principles, while the coverage of its canopy stretched wider to encompass more and more creatives. All of this happening as ROOTS' profile as a regional organization with national institutional impact has expanded to be more accessible and equitable than ever. It is a great time to transition.
Posted on June 23, 2017 by Monica

Americans for the Arts recently released its Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 report, which compiles national data to examine the economic impact of nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences. As reported on Hyperallergic:

The report, tabulated with the help of economists from the Georgia Institute of Technology, draws from detailed spending and attendance figures provided by 14,439 cultural organizations and a whopping 212,691 audience surveys. It offers startlingly detailed figures about US citizens’ typical cultural consumption patterns and the way cultural organizations’ spending generates even more economic activity in their communities.
Posted on June 22, 2017 by Monica

Larry Kramer, president of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, has recently published an article in the Stanford Social Innovation Review:

No topic in philanthropy has generated as much interest and excitement in recent years as impact investing. And while talk has so far exceeded action by a wide margin, that’s starting to change as the steady drumbeat to join the party gains momentum. Yet the very one-sidedness of the discussion—and it has been entirely one-sided—gives me pause. For there are good reasons to hesitate before jumping down the for-profit rabbit hole, particularly for large grantmaking foundations like Hewlett.
Posted on June 21, 2017 by Monica

Insights, a service of Foundation Center, has announced the launch of the Columbus Survey Dashboard – the most up-to-date, comprehensive dataset reflecting the current financial state of community foundations in the United States. The research, which has been conducted annually since 1988, is available for the first time in an online, interactive format. The data show that community foundation assets reached a total of more than $76 billion in 2016, after a year of negligible growth in 2015.

Posted on June 20, 2017 by Monica

From Philanthropy News Digest:

The F.B. Heron Foundation in New York City has announced that Clara Miller will step down as president at the end of December. Miller, who has served as director and president of Heron since 2010, will assume the role of president emerita and will continue to write, speak, and undertake research aimed at advancing the foundation's mission.

The widely respected Miller launched a strategic review of the foundation's grantmaking in the aftermath of the 2008 economic crisis that led to the adoption of a new operating model focused on impact investments in enterprises that create reliable income streams for people striving to lift themselves out of poverty.

Posted on June 19, 2017 by Monica

The Mid-America Arts Alliance (M-AAA) board of directors voted unanimously on June 9, 2017 to appoint Todd Stein as its new chief executive officer.

Stein will lead M-AAA, the nation’s first regional arts organization that fosters and serves artists, cultural organizations, and communities in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, and beyond. He has been serving as the organization’s interim CEO since August 2016 and before that as its chief operating officer.

Posted on June 14, 2017 by Monica

An article in the PhilanTopic blog highlights the work of the CrossCurrents Foundation to support films that explore social issues:

Soon after [co-founders Ken Grossinger and Michelíne Klagsbrun] created their foundation, the couple contacted Gittens with a proposal to establish the Justice Matters film series and award.

"Over the past eight years, Justice Matters has featured forty-one films," Blackaby told me. "And thanks to the Wyncote Foundation, we've been able to create that community connection, too: taking films out to schools and other settings, using social media to reach new audiences, and bringing the filmmakers and resource people to post-screening discussions."

Posted on June 14, 2017 by Monica

With funding from the Ford Foundation, Dance/NYC has launched a $500,000 fund to make operating grants to “small dance makers” with annual operating budgets between $25,000 and $1 million, with priority given to groups led by ALAANA artists. As reported by Crain’s New York Business:

The fund was created in response to a research report released by Dance/NYC in October, which looked at 172 troupes over a six-year period. The study found that dance groups with budgets up to $1 million make up 84% of the total in New York, but have access to only 10% of total revenue.

Read the full article at Crain’s New York Business.

Posted on June 13, 2017 by Monica

From The Chronicle of Philanthropy:

Charitable giving hit a record high for the third straight year in 2016, reaching $390.1 billion, according to "Giving USA," an annual study that estimates American philanthropy. However, donations rose at a slower rate than in recent years — 1.4 percent — as key economic indicators grew modestly and a divisive election season sowed uncertainty.

Foundation and corporate giving saw modest gains, with each increasing by a little more than 2 percent, to $59.3 billion and $18.6 billion, respectively. Giving to arts and culture groups grew by 5.1 percent, the second-biggest jump [by giving category], reaching $18.2 billion.

Posted on June 12, 2017 by Monica

Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation has selected sixty New York City arts and cultural organizations to participate in their Racial Equity in the Arts Innovation Lab, a year-long training program to improve racial equity in the arts and culture sector. Funded through The New York City Cultural Agenda Fund in The New York Community Trust, the Racial Equity in the Arts Lab will work with the sixty influential arts and cultural institutions to develop skills and strategies for interrupting racial inequity within their institutions, and positively affecting their audiences, stakeholders, constituencies — as well as staff and team members of color.

Read the full announcement.

Posted on June 12, 2017 by Monica

Seattle Office of Arts & Culture has released a report exploring mechanisms for creating, activating, and preserving cultural spaces amid the city’s real estate boom.

“Despite cultural space’s role in strengthening neighborhoods, creating and maintaining these spaces in strong real estate markets can be extremely difficult. The older, smaller, more eccentric spaces that often house cultural uses and small businesses are particularly vulnerable to development-driven displacement.”

Posted on June 8, 2017 by Monica

The Building Movement Project has released a report about the gap in representation of ALAANA individuals in leadership positions at nonprofits. The report has implications for organizations of all types, including recommendations for funders. As reported by Nonprofit Quarterly:

The report has a high-level message: “The results call into question the common assumption that to increase the diversity of nonprofit leaders, People of Color need more training. The findings point to a new narrative. To increase the number of People of Color leaders, the nonprofit sector needs to address the practices and biases of those governing nonprofit organizations.”

Read more at the Nonprofit Quarterly.

Posted on June 7, 2017 by Monica

The Education Commission of the States has released a detailed report highlighting the ways that states and districts can engage the arts in the ongoing work of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Designed to continue growing as ESSA implementation proceeds, this report currently contains chapters exploring the opportunities for arts education within the following topics: Accountability, Assessments, Stakeholder Engagement, State Plans, Tiers of Evidence, Title I, and a Well-Rounded Education.

Read the report.

Posted on June 6, 2017 by Monica

The Council on Foundations had published an informative update on how potential federal tax reforms affecting the charitable deduction (which allows individuals to write off contributions to nonprofits on their taxes) could negatively impact giving to private foundations. To mitigate consequences of changes to the charitable deduction, the Council encourages funders to advocate for “a universal charitable deduction as a part of tax reform.” The update from Council offers detailed information on how private foundations can engage in advocacy and lobbying on this issue.

Posted on June 6, 2017 by Monica

A recent article from The McKnight Foundation highlights the thriving arts community in rural Fergus Falls, Minnesota:

In what has become a national model, artists in Fergus Falls worked within their communities to create a meaningful, vibrant, and equitable place. According to the 2017 Creative Minnesota report, the economic impact of the arts and culture activity in Fergus Falls alone is nearly $3 million every year.
Posted on June 1, 2017 by SuJ'n

For the month of June, GIA’s photo banner features work and artists supported by Boise City Department of Arts & History (A&H). Created in 2008, A&H supports public art, cultural programs, history programs, cultural sites, and the care and conservation of Boise cultural assets. Boise’s Percent-for-Art funding helps assure A&H’s ability to serve an advisory role to a $50 million local arts and history industry.

Posted on May 31, 2017 by Monica

The most recent installment of the Otis Report on the Creative Economy of California, supported by the California Arts Council, takes a deep dive into California’s creative industries; more specifically, into their impact on the state’s economy. This year, California Arts Council funded an addendum to the report on the need for affordable housing and workspaces for artists, offering solutions for the future.

Posted on May 31, 2017 by Monica

From The New York Times:

Audible, the digital audiobook giant, announced Tuesday that it would create a $5 million fund to commission new works from emerging playwrights — not for the stage, but for people’s headphones and speakers.

As audio fiction seems to be having a moment, in the realm of podcasts, Audible plans to draw from the vast pool of young writers to create one- or two-person plays. They will be available beginning late this year, the company said.

Read the full article from The New York Times.

Posted on May 31, 2017 by Monica

Christy Morse, CEO of Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP) and board chair of the organization’s grantmaking entities, announced that after more than 20 years of leading the organization, she is stepping down from her role as CEO.

Current MACP president, Paul Busch, will assume the CEO role on July 1, 2017, while Christy will remain as CEO Emeritus through January 31, 2018, when she will formally retire as CEO. Christy will continue serving as board chair of Margaret A. Cargill Foundation and Anne Ray Foundation, leading the efforts of each board in developing organization strategies, evaluating funding priorities, and assessing program effectiveness.

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