Message from the Director
Governor's Arts Awards Winners Set the Tone for the Future
"Over the years I have seen tremendous growth in Arizona's cultural community and I have experienced, along with everyone else, the setbacks of recessions and downturns. We are severely challenged right now, but I know in the next few years we will see growth again. We all must be ready for that moment and seize the momentum." Jim Ballinger, Sybil Harrington Director, Phoenix Art Museum.
Ballinger's inspirational words in accepting the Shelley Award at the 32nd Governor's Arts Awards, March 6, not only set the tone for the evening, but the future of arts in Arizona. Here at Arizona Citizens Action for the Arts, we can say modestly that " preparing to seize the momentum" summarizes our agenda now and for the rest of 2013.
That theme was reflected in our agenda at this year's Art Congress, Feb. 4, at the State Capitol when 200 advocates introduced themselves to the 26 new legislators and got further acquainted with the rest. We reminded them that with a recovering economy, we expected to begin efforts to restore funding to the Arizona Commission on the Arts, especially the $20 million endowment that was swept three years ago to help balance the budget.
It is the message we will deliver this spring as Arizona, cities, towns and schools across Arizona plan for next year's budget. Arts advocates are telling their elected officials to hold the line against cuts to arts programs, and in some cases, to restore what's been lost in recent years. And it is the discussion we will have with candidates in local city council elections later this year. There's plenty to do as indicated in the stories below.
But as we embark on this advocacy, we also should consider how wonderfully the 2013 Governor's Arts Award honorees reflect the historical significance of arts and culture in our state and the opportunities in our very near future.
Congratulations to the other honorees for their work and contributions to our cultural life: Arts Executive Dick Bowers, Phoenix (Individual); painter and teacher Jim Waid, Tucson (Artist); committed corporate citizen Southwest Ambulance, Mesa (Business); the innovative Marshall Magnet Elementary School, Flagstaff (Arts in Education - Community); dance legend and professor Marion Kirk Jones, Tempe (Arts in Education - Individual), and neighbor-based arts center Alwun House, Phoenix (Community).
Let's be inspired by them as we continue our own work for arts, arts education and culture in Arizona.
More than 500 advocates, artists and supporters were at The Herberger Theater Center March 6 for the 2013 Governor's Arts Awards. Read the full text of Jim Ballinger's remarks here.
And thank you again to the evening's major sponsors Resolution Copper Mining, SRP, The Arizona Lottery and The Herberger Theater Center.
See how much fun we had at the event by visiting our picture gallery on Facebook.
Catherine 'Rusty' Foley
Arizona Citizens Action for the Arts
Now is the time for Phoenix Residents to Speak Up for the Arts
Starting this week through the end of the month, the City of Phoenix is conducting 20 budget hearings all over the city. This is YOUR chance to speak up for funding for the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture that provides grants to local arts and culture organizations, maintains the City's public art collection and provides rental support for nonprofit arts organizations using city-owned theaters..
Every dollar invested in arts and culture in Phoenix turns over four times in our local economy through household spending and retail services. In fact, the economic impact of the 60 of organizations who participated in a recent study showed $300 million, nearly 10,000 jobs and $13 million in tax revenues contributed annually to the local economy.
What can you do?
1. Attend a public hearing in your neighborhood and fill out a card to speak:
2. Let the Mayor and Council know that you:
- Appreciate the Mayor and City Council's restoration of $250,000 to the office of Arts and Culture last year.
- Support the City Manager's Trial budget which includes restoring an additional $180,000 in grant funds, $20,000 to maintain our public art collection and $100,000 for rent support to art organizations that perform in city theaters like Symphony Hall, the Herberger Theater Center and the Orpheum Theater.
- Ask that the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture be held harmless if the Mayor and Council vote for an early repeal of the temporary food tax.
Now, as the economy is recovering, it is time that we invest in local arts and culture organizations that contribute to local job growth, small businesses and retail activity.
See the full schedule of Council hearings here.
If you are not sure of your City Council district, you may search here.
For one-stop information about the city budget and the process of adopting it visit here.
'Tis the Season for Budgeting
Phoenix is not the only place where local mayors and city councils are pouring over proposed budgets for the next fiscal year. Tucson advocates are actively engaged in supporting the Tucson Pima Arts Council which had been threatened with a 50% cut in a staff-proposed budget. Word is that the City Council will reject the cut, but local advocates will need to stay vigilant. More information is available on the TPAC website.
Arts supporters in other Arizona cities should visit their city's website for information about local budgets and how local arts commissions and councils will fair. If additional advocacy help is required in your local community, please contact us at email@example.com.
Scottsdale Parents Organize Against School Budget Cuts
A parent group, Respect Our Scottsdale Students, is urging the Scottsdale Unified School District to spare as many teachers as possible in overcoming a $9.8 million budget gap.
The organization's Facebook page links to a petition. The Arizona Republic reported that among the proposed cuts are eliminating half of the music, art and physical education teachers at Copper Ridge School. One parent speaking at school board meeting pointed to the irony of the discussion at the same meeting where students were honored for their artistic accomplishments.
The district's 2013-14 budget is impacted by voter rejection of a budget override that will phase out property tax causing a loss of $4.3 million in teacher funding and a drop of 450 in student enrollment that will cut about $2.4 million in per-pupil funding from the state.
Sequester Cuts $90 Million from NEA and other Arts Budgets
The mandatory 5 percent sequester will cut about $92 million from the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities ($7 million), Institute of Museum and Library Services ($12 million), Corporation for Public Broadcasting ($22 million) and the Smithsonian ($51 million).
Americans for the Arts reminds advocates that national Arts Advocacy Day (April 8-9) in Washington, D.C.,will take place during a very critical time frame. It is imperative that arts supporters nationwide make their voices heard during this, the largest arts advocacy convening of the year.
Numerous other proposals may affect funding levels for the NEA and other federal arts-related budgets, tax treatment of charitable deductions and other arts-related activities.
Wells Fargo's $50,000 Grant Will Restart Business Volunteers for the Arts
Arizona Citizens for the Arts has received a $50,000 NeighborhoodLIFT grant from Wells Fargo to manage and operate Business Volunteers for the Arts (BVA), a program matching business volunteers with a range of skills with arts and cultural organizations in metropolitan Phoenix.
AzCA was one of six organizations receiving a total of $1 million in grants through the NeighborhoodLIFT program launched last year to help stabilize neighborhoods.
BVA had been managed by the Arts & Business Council of Greater Phoenix which suspended operations last year.
BVA began operating in Phoenix in 1990 under the auspices of the Phoenix Arts Commission (now the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture). During its 22 years, BVA completed, 1,900 technical assistance projects using more than 1,400 business volunteers to help expand the capacity of over 100 arts and cultural organizations.
AzCAA will be relaunching BVA later this year in an effort to use business community leaders to help grow the capacity of Phoenix arts organizations to contribute to the economic wellbeing and community life of local neighborhoods. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to be kept informed about the reintroduction of the program.
AzCAA Looking for Summer Interns in Arts Policy and Administration
Applications are being accepted for the Arizona Citizens Action for the Arts Internship Program for undergraduate and graduate students to learn about and participate in arts advocacy through two positions: Arts Administration Intern and Arts Public Policy Intern. Both positions offer hands-on experience in managing activities associated with promoting the arts and arts and culture policy issues.
Application deadline for both of the unpaid positions is May 1. Each intern would work 15-20 hours a week. Full information and requirements are posted on the website, www.azcitizensforhearts.org.
Thought Leader Ben Cameron Brings His Arts Message to Phoenix
Ben Cameron, Program Director for the Arts at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, a TED Talks speaker and a Tony Awards nominating committee member, spoke of the value of art to the community as more than just entertainment at the first Thought Leader in Residence Program by the Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust.
In an Arizona Republic Op-Ed before he began his weeklong series of meetings with arts, business and community leaders, Cameron wrote that "with the advent of new systems for gathering data, the arts community is increasingly articulate about our real economic power."
Cameron concluded that "no one today would challenge the importance of math and science as core academic disciplines, but sole emphasis on these disciplines fails to promote the integrated left/right-brain thinking that the future increasingly demands - an integration that has led Mike Huckabee to compare a math and science curriculum without the arts to a database without a server."
Learn more about Cameron's insights into the future of the arts by visiting Piper's special website devoted to Cameron's work and the Thought Leader In Residence Program which is bringing in individuals to "share expertise on significant issues and spur idea generation that ultimately impacts and strengthens quality of life in Maricopa County."
Arizona Gives Day
On March 20, 2013 Arizonans across the state supported hundreds of Arizona nonprofits by raising $928,541 in 24 hours. Arizona Citizens for the Arts had 49 donors raising $1,850.
Thank you for the support on Arizona Gives Day and every day!
Young Arts Arizona Ltd is a community-based organization, formed in 1998, that exhibits the artwork of at-risk children.
Today, the organization collaborates with 49 schools and 31 cultural agencies whose children create artwork, which is then framed and exhibited. The art is shown in public galleries in 25 venues throughout the Metropolitan Phoenix Area and Tucson and in its own gallery, Purple Space.
Young Arts' goal is to make young people feel good about themselves through the creative process and the act of seeing their work profressionally framed and displayed. Learn more here
New Program to Power Advocacy Efforts
Voter Voice is a new online alert system that AzCAA is using to notify advocates when they should contact their elected officials about state, federal and local issues involving arts and culture. Advocates who have been a part of the CapWiz system have been transitioned automatically to VoterVoice. Visit the new AzCAA Action Center to keep up-to-date on current advocacy issues, and to sign up to receive regular action blasts. Add your voice to your vote!
Dates to Remember
National Arts Advocacy Day
PAVE Biennial Symposium on Entrepreneurship and the Arts
Americans for the Arts Annual Convention
Board of Directors
President, Arizona Citizens
Vice President, Arizona Citizens
Vice President, Arizona Action
Past President, Arizona Citizens
Chair, Finance Committee
Winslow Arts Trust
Salt River Project
Representative Kate Brophy McGee
Arizona House of Representatives
Consulting & Policy Development
Pink Adventure Tours
Musical Instrument Museum
Tucson Symphony Orchestra League
Senator Steve Farley
Arizona State Senate
Miller-Russell & Associates
Phillip C. Jones
Frazer Ryan Goldberg & Arnold LLP
Tucson Museum of Art
Southern Arizona Arts & Culture Alliance
Retired Arts Educator