Jamie Cheek // Democrat // Congressional District 1 (A+)
1. How have the arts, culture, and/or humanities impacted your life?
Arts and humanities have had a significant impact in my life. It started when I was in High School when I actively participated in Speech and Debate. It was through this activity I was able to earn a scholarship that allowed me to be a first generation college graduate. While in College, I was a Communication major which was housed in the Arts & Humanities College. Also, my husband now works for Weber State University in the Communication department, which is also in the Arts & Humanities College. He is currently earning his PhD in English at Utah State University. My family and I have been very active in the Utah Arts Festival that is hosted every June. It is one of our favorite events to attend with the different shows and food and art available for purchase. In fact, one of my favorite pieces of art in my office was bought from an artist at that festival. Finally, the arts and humanities play a huge part in the lives of my family. My brother in law works for the entertainment industry where he actively plans and promotes music festivals year round. We understand the value of the arts, especially in times of crisis. We must continue to support and invest in them with both our time and resources.
2. Utah's humanities and arts employ 123,000 Utahns, provide $4.4 billion in earnings, and $13.2 billion in sales. This is a larger economic impact than agriculture, mining, and real estate. Do you consider the arts and cultural sector an economic driver in Utah?
3. I support the following federal agencies and will work to increase fiscally responsible investment in them:
-National Endowment for the Arts
-National Endowment for the Humanities
-Institute of Museum and Library Services
-Corporation for Public Broadcasting
4. If I win, I will join the following cultural caucuses:
5. Forgivable loans available from the Small Business Administration have been vitally important to helping the cultural industry recover from COVID-19:
I support increasing federal funding in SBA COVID loans and keeping them open for nonprofits.
6. Fiscally responsible government investment in the arts and humanities (including humanities and arts education) means to me:
We must continue to support and invest in the arts and humanities; it is especially true that the Federal Government must be the driving force in that investment. One critical piece of the endowments listed above is their educational opportunities for researchers and scholars. This allows many people to continue to drive knowledge production while also growing interest in these fields.
7. Anything else we should know about you?
I have lived in Utah for the last 9 years and have made it my home. I live literally across the street from Weber State University and am active participant in my local community. I also work for the State of Utah in the Division of Workforce Services with the Office of Rehabilitation. In this role I work with individuals with disabilities to help them reach their vocational goals and increase their independence.