News from Americans for the Arts
Important Changes, Economic Stimulus Package
March 02, 2009The following is a message from Robert L. Lynch, President & CEO for Americans for the Arts:
• We know that to achieve our mission of advancing the arts in America, we need a strong local arts agency network — one that serves every individual and every arts organization in the country. I am delighted to announce that we have created the Local Arts Advancement Department, to be led by longtime staff member Randy Cohen. This new department combines the strengths of professional development, membership services, research, and Animating Democracy for the purpose of growing and strengthening the network of local arts agencies as well as ensuring they operate in an environment in which they can thrive.
• We will maintain our existing networks to keep you connected and even establish new ones.
• We will continue to provide you and your staff with our valuable research on how the arts address, social, educational, and economic development issues; Arts Links, Monographs, and listservs to keep you connected; and training opportunities through conferences and webinars.
• And there is more in the works — like a Members-Only section of our website, which I am also very excited about.
• In April, we will fully launch our new strategic plan, which will include publishing a Monograph highlighting our environmental scan, presenting a webinar, and sharing the plan details with you, our members.
A Great Victory
By now you know about the recent stunning victory for the arts in America with the inclusion of $50 million of arts funding in the economic stimulus package. Equally remarkable to me is the story that made this possible. Our national network and your mobilization of arts supporters yielded more than 85,000 letters to Congress, thousands of phone calls to their offices, and hundreds of news media placements. Our voices were heard and Congress responded with a message to the country that, when we support the arts, we are investing in an industry that delivers both cultural and economic benefits to our communities.
To build on this momentum for the promise of even greater successes in the future, we now offer free membership in the Americans for the Arts Action Fund. Visit www.ArtsActionFund.org to join or to be sure your membership is current. Encourage your staff and arts community and join and take action. This is a free and simple means of transforming your audiences into local arts advocates.