The Community Foundation and Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund help bring National Arts Strategies to Atlanta
GROWTH OF ARTS IN ATLANTA BRINGS UNIQUE NATIONWIDE EXECUTIVE EDUCATION PROGRAM
National Art Strategies’ Program First of Its Caliber Ever Offered; Local Funders Include The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, The Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund and the Fulton County Arts Council
WASHINGTON, DC – October 16, 2006 – National Arts Strategies (NAS) today launched a nationwide program offering leaders of non-profit arts groups the opportunity to study with top business and graduate school professors in marketing, finance, management, and other areas of critical interest to arts organizations. The nationwide program launches in Atlanta in February, 2007 and will include up to 25 locally-based arts leaders due to support from The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, The Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund and the Fulton County Arts Council (FCAC). Based in Washington, DC, NAS is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening the arts and culture sector through leadership education. Today’s initiative marks the first time a coordinated program of this caliber will be available to all arts and culture leaders across the U.S. In addition to Atlanta, seminars are being offered in New York, Chicago, Phoenix, and Seattle starting in 2007.
“The Business of Arts and Culture,” a unique investment in the leaders of the nation’s cultural organizations, consists of executive seminars and applied learning projects, and provides scholarships and travel support for participants across the country. The program brings together a national network of funders and seminars taught by faculty from top business and graduate schools including Harvard Business School, Stanford Graduate School of Business and MIT. These instructors use highly interactive classroom experiences to address the specific issues of mid- and large-sized cultural organizations. The faculty roster from Atlanta includes Dennis Young, Director of the Nonprofit Studies Program from Georgia State University and Luis Martins, Associate Professor of Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
The Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund was created in 1993 as a direct response to the capacity training and stabilization strategies NAS developed in the 1990s. The Arts Fund is a partnership between the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce and The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta and helps small and medium-sized arts organizations overcome hurdles to their success and grow into strong, self-sustaining institutions. For these vital organizations that give so much to Atlanta, the Arts Fund provides its own gift in return – stabilization.
“The Arts Fund and NAS were born out of the same fundamental belief that capacity building and stabilization are vital keys to arts organizations,” says Arts Fund director Lisa Cremin. “NAS programs inspired the creation of the Arts Fund, and their return to Atlanta reminds us just how much this arts community has grown.”
In November 2005 Lisa Cremin and the Arts Fund brought NAS President and CEO Russell Willis Taylor to Atlanta to meet with arts organizations and introduce the executive education program. The uniform enthusiasm and renewed capacity of arts organizations made it possible for Atlanta to be one of the regional sites for “The Business of Arts and Culture” series.
“This program builds on NAS’ proven content and leadership development approaches and is the beginning of what we hope will be a cornerstone program of continuing education for arts and cultural leaders,” said Taylor. “With the support of national funders and involvement of strong partners from communities across the U.S., like The Community Foundation and the Fulton County Arts Council, this program will help infuse our sector with fresh ideas from outside our field and bring the best thinking on business challenges to arts leaders across the country.”
Joining The Community Foundation, the Fulton County Arts Council and the Arts Fund in its support is a network of leading national and regional funding organizations, including The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, The Joyce Foundation, The Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and 4Culture. Lead funding for the program has been made possible by an anonymous national donor.
“Our funders are making a real investment in developing the leadership capacity that our sector needs today and for the future,” said Jim Rosenberg, Vice President, NAS. “This high-profile initiative will help leaders find new opportunities for their organizations and communities. It will also demonstrate to donors, staff and boards the impact of top-quality continuing education. Our goal is to provide these programs at a fee that makes it possible for teams to attend and work together at the seminars.”
NAS is able to keep costs for the programs at a minimum thanks to the support NAS secures from its program funding partners, such as The Community Foundation, FCAC and the Arts Fund. Compared with $1800 to $2000 for comparable executive education, NAS fees are $225 to $350 depending on team size, with travel assistance available for teams of three or more. A subsidy of $600 per person is available through NAS for travel and lodging costs.
The program includes 14 seminar presentations with 3 being offered in Atlanta, and topics include Strategy, Strategic Marketing, Leading Innovation, Managing People, Creative Alliances, Building Evaluation Capacity, Financing the Future and Governance. Attendance is limited to 50 seats per presentation to allow for in-depth interaction with the faculty and more time to network with peers from across the country.
NAS is also teaming up with five national promotional partners to build participation and awareness for the Business of Arts and Culture. Promotional partners are American Symphony Orchestra League, Association of Performing Arts Presenters, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Chorus America and the Southern Arts Federation. NAS will continue to develop promotional partnerships throughout the program.
NAS will hold its first seminar in Atlanta, “Strategy”, February 8-10, 2007 followed by “Creative Alliances” July 19-20. The entire schedule can be found on the National Arts Strategies website at www.artstrategies.org.
About The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta
With more than $600 million in assets, The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta manages and administers the charitable dollars for 650 individuals and families by matching them with charities and causes that serve their personal philanthropic interests. Last year The Community Foundation awarded more than 4,600 grants totaling nearly $50 million throughout 23 counties in the greater Atlanta area. For more information, visit www.atlcf.org.
About The Fulton County Arts Council
The Fulton County Arts Council (FCAC) is a cultural leader in Fulton County and the largest funder of the arts in the State of Georgia. The FCAC assists the Fulton County Commission in the development of public policy on public support for the arts industry, makes recommendations to Fulton County Commissioners on funding the arts and generally oversees the development and implementation of publicly assisted programs that address the diverse cultural needs of Fulton County’s citizenry.
About The Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund
The Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund, a partnership of The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta and the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce provides stabilization grants to small and medium-sized arts organizations in the metro area with annual operating budgets of less than $1.5 million. Since its founding in 1993 the Arts Fund has given away more than $4.6 million. It is the region’s only endowment exclusively dedicated to funding smaller arts organizations. For more information, visit http://www.metroatlantaartsfund.org/.
About National Arts Strategies
National Arts Strategies (NAS) is as a national nonprofit that creates executive education programs for the arts and culture sector. Founded over 20 years ago by the Ford, Rockefeller, and Mellon Foundations, NAS helps strengthen communities of arts organizations and helps bring new approaches into the field. Their leadership development programs allow arts executives to explore the toughest challenges facing organizations today and to learn from some of the top business and graduate school faculty in the U.S. NAS seminars have been presented to over 2000 executives, board members, and staff from over 750 arts and cultural organizations in the U.S. and overseas. For more information, visit www.artstrategies.org.
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