The SAANBox - February 22, 2017


February 22, 2017




Arts Advocacy Day
March 20–21, 2017

Omni Shoreham Hotel
Washington, DC

The 30th Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy
March 20, 2017
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
Washington, DC

2017 Annual Convention
June 16 - 18, 2017

Hilton San Francisco Union Square
San Francisco, California

National Arts Marketing Project Conference
November 10-13, 2017

The Peabody Memphis
Memphis, Tennessee


SAAN Spring Meeting
March 19, 2017

Omni Shoreham Hotel
Washington, D.C.
SAAN Summer Meeting
June 15, 2017

San Francisco, CA


Minnesota Arts Advocacy Day
February 28, 2017
St. Paul, MN

Maine Advocacy Day
March 8, 2017
Augusta, ME

Wisconsin Arts Day
March 9, 2017
Madison, WI

Alabama Arts Advocacy Conference
March 14-15, 2017

Montgomery, AL

Arizona Arts Congress

March 14, 2017

Phoenix, AZ

Missouri Fine Arts Education Day
March 29, 2017
Jefferson City, MO

North Carolina Arts Day
March 28-29, 2017
Raleigh, NC

Oklahoma Arts Day
April 12, 2017
Oklahoma City, OK

Pennsylvania Arts Day 
April 25, 2017
Harrisburg, PA

If you have any events to be posted, please contact Lizzie Dorman




State and Local News


Fine Arts Standards

§  The Iowa Department of Education announced on February 16 that a new team will develop recommended statewide standards in fine arts. Known as the Fine Arts Standards Adoption Team, its members will met for the first time on Tuesday, February 21. State Arts Action Network Council member Iowa Alliance for Arts Education's executive director Leon Kuehner was named to the team.

The team was created in response to public support for offering standards that go beyond the mandatory subject areas of English language arts, mathematics, science, social studies and 21st century skills. The team's goal will be to establish concepts and skills that will engender creativity and critical thinking in fine arts—including visual art, general music, instrumental music, vocal music, theater, dance, and media arts. In next steps, the team will solicit public feedback and will offer recommended standards to the State Board of Education for review. If adopted, the fine arts standards would be optional for school districts.

The Iowa Department of Education Director Ryan Wise also commented, "Iowa is committed to ensuring our students have access to a quality learning experience in all subjects, and that includes fine arts."

§  In a unanimous vote on February 21, the Missouri State Board of Education authorized a review and potential revision of the state's fine arts learning standards. For next steps, a work group will be formed from nominations and selections according to stakeholders ranging from education professionals to parents. Appointments to the work group could begin as early as next week. For more information, please contact SAAN member Missouri Alliance for the Arts in Education's executive director Ben Martin.

Film Tax Credits

New Mexico State Senator Craig Brandt (Sandoval-R) introduced Senate Bill 332 which would use funding budgeted for capital outlay projects and the state's film tax credit program in order to restore $46 million to school districts across the state. The bill would transfer $26.1 million from capital outlay funds and halt $20 million from the film tax credit's FY2017 budget to cover the $46 million gap in funding for school districts. Payment of the suspended film tax credits would resume on July 1, 2017. Senate Bill 332 has been referred to the Senate Corporations and Transportation Committee and the Senate Finance Committee.


On February 15, the New York City Council approved a legislative package—spearheaded by Cultural Affairs Committee Chair Jimmy Van Bramer and Women's Committee Chair Laurie A. Cumbo—to "further fund and promote art inclusivity and accessibility through the Percent for Art Program." There were six arts-related bills total signed into law, with three reforming the Percent for Art program. The package of bills aims to provide greater accountability and transparency to the public art process, as well as increase funding levels to address the cost of inflation. 

In particular—Intro 1295 will require the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) to publish on its website Percent for Art program artists' demographic information. Intro 1296 will order that at least one percent of the first $50 million of capital funds will be allocated for works of art. Intro 1297 will require DCA to engage in outreach and educational efforts for submitting works of art for the Percent for Art program to diverse arts and cultural organizations, community-based organizations, as well as colleges and universities. In addition, the DCA resources would need to be available in the seven most commonly spoken languages in the city.





Americans for the Arts' president and CEO Robert L. Lynch was awarded the JFK Commonwealth Award at the 2017 Commonwealth Awards at the Massachusetts State House in Boston on February 15, 2017. The inaugural award recognizes Lynch's long career as a leader, champion, and ambassador for the arts.

The award is part of a year-long commemoration of President John F. Kennedy's contribution to the arts and humanities. It coincides with the 50th anniversary of the Massachusetts Cultural Council, which along with the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities remain lasting legacies of President Kennedy.

"Very few Americans can speak as authentically, knowledgeably, and passionately about the myriad public benefits of the arts and culture as Bob Lynch," said Massachusetts Cultural Council Executive Director Anita Walker. "As we work to preserve our cultural legacy for future generations, it's important to honor those who fight to maintain and build upon President Kennedy's commitment to the arts and humanities and their vital role in our democracy."

For more information, check out the Massachusetts Cultural Council press release.

Photo credit: Brendan Moniuk-Mercure of Mercure Photography



Bulletin Board

§  Registration for the March 2017 State Arts Action Network (SAAN) Meeting is Live
The next SAAN meeting will take place on Sunday, March 19 from 11:00 am to 6:00 pmat the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC. If you plan on attending, please register here

Please submit your State of the State reports to Lizzie Dorman ( by Thursday, March 16 at 5:30 pm Eastern
For our newer members, State of the State reports are 2-3 paragraphs about legislative updates in your state as well as any new programs and/or successes at your organization. Even if you are not able to attend the in-person meeting, we will distribute the full compilation of the State of the State reports to the Network and will upload the PDF to the SAAN Members-Only webpage after the meeting. 

If you have any questions, please email Lizzie Dorman (

§  The 30th Annual Arts Advocacy Day will take place this spring on March 20–21, 2017 in Washington, D.C. Arts Advocacy Day is the largest conference of its kind and is the time to make your voice heard on Capitol Hill. Click here to register. 

Please note: if you are a state captain and haven't registered yet, please email Lauren Cohen ( about your registration. 

We look forward to seeing you in March!

§  Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation, will give the 30th Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy. Walker will deliver the lecture onMarch 20, 2017, at 6:30 p.m. in the Concert Hall at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. The Nancy Hanks Lecture is free, but seating is limited. RSVP here for 2 free tickets by March 13, 2017.

§  Americans for the Arts just launched a new Arts Mobilization Center—a hub for the information you need to advocate for the arts today. It contains messages that we have distributed, policy response statements Americans for the Arts has issued on key and timely topics, news articles that are useful, and important action steps for you to take now and in the weeks and months to come. Please visit the Arts Mobilization Center often—it will continue to grow each week with new tools and resources.



Tech Talk

Arts U Learning Opportunities

§  Supercharging Your PD!
Achieving your arts career aspirations requires some clarity and planning. Supercharging Your PD uses the superpower tools of inquiry, brainstorming, and visceral language to help individuals get to clarity on seemingly evasive or obtuse professional goals. The Clarity Process, developed by Sandy Seufert, is an amalgam of select processes and techniques including the Question Formulation Technique and the Technology of Participation. Through her own work as a facilitator, strategic planner and professional development professional, Sandy discovered a new adaptation and application of these techniques that prove powerful in both individual and group reflection.

In this self-paced lesson, learn how to get to value-centered, emotionally connected, and mission aligned professional goals that are organized in an organic yet logical way.

Upcoming Free Webinars

§  Business Management Essentials for Nonprofits: Further Your Mission by Tending to Your Business Needs
Wednesday, March 1, 2017 at 1:00 pm ET

501(c)(3). It's a tax status, not a business plan. But are you prepared to run the business of your nonprofit? Do you know the insurance you need? How to manage the HR needs of your staff? How to choose and manage vendors for office management, fundraising, data management and marketing? There are many facets to having a successful nonprofit beyond great mission-driven programs. Critical functions include as budget and finance, operations (such as insurance and office management) and human resources, as well as the programs, strategic planning, fundraising, marketing, and governance most nonprofit professionals know. This webinar will give you an overview of some of the areas in which a little knowledge can go a long way. We will review strategies for determining what to out source and what to do in house and will discuss how to evaluate and pick suitable vendors for outsourcing needs. Questions in advance of the webinar are welcome!

§  Strategic Planning Part 1: Cultivation & Organizational Development
Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at 1:00 pm ET 

Strategic planning should be a means not only to produce a strategy, but also to engage and cultivate stakeholders, develop leadership, and generate new energy, commitment and consensus around mission. Its primary product is not a written plan, but strategic thinking within the organization, which is achieved through a process of planning followed by a process of implementation. A well-conceived and managed planning process can be the most effective form of organizational development.

- What benefits to expect from an effective strategic planning process
- How to approach and structure a strategic planning process for your organization
- How to get broad buy-in in any organization
- Tools to use for assessing your situation, engaging your constituencies, developing an effective plan, and implementing it

§  From Money Pit to Moneymaker: The Nonprofit Executive Guide to Earned Revenue
Wednesday, March 29, 2017 at 1:00 pm ET

If you're tired of waiting around for grants to be rubber-stamped or nervous that new competitors are moving in on your donors, you may be wondering how you'll ever achieve financial sustainability.

With traditional sources threatened or uncertain, now may be the time to consider earned revenue — not to replace philanthropic sources but to supplement.

What if you could convert that costly program into a constant stream of revenue? What if there's an asset, hidden like a treasure in the proverbial attic of your organization, ready to be dusted off? What if new audiences are out there waiting to invest in your mission in a whole new way?

Join revenue strategist Gail Bower on this webinar to explore whether you might have hidden potential.

You'll learn:
- What earned revenue is all about,
- Pros and cons of developing this source,
- Whether social enterprise is your path,
- 5 key trends that say now is a great time to add earned revenue to the mix,
- The one leadership trait and mindset you need for success,
- 3 sources of ideas for revenue,
- 3 important considerations before getting started, 
- Plus case studies of how other organizations have succeeded with earned revenue.



Spotlight: Susan Boskoff


Long-time Nevada State Arts Agency Leader Announces Retirement

Susan Boskoff, executive director of the Nevada Arts Council, announced her retirement on March 31, 2017. During her tenure of 24 years, Boskoff increased the agency's capacity to expand core programs significantly, established a second office in Las Vegas, and guided the grants program redesign. To serve Nevadans in rural communities and urban centers, Boskoff introduced biannual Arts Town Meetings, the Nevada Touring Initiative, Nevada Circuit Riders, Arts @ the Heart annual convening, and other mission-driven services. 

Prior to moving to Nevada, Boskoff served as the Utah Arts Council's Community/State Partnership Coordinator for eleven years, and then as director of Salt Lake City's Performing Arts Coalition. Boskoff has been a trustee of the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies and Western States Arts Federation, among others, and has presented at numerous state and national conferences. Her arts leadership in Nevada and Utah has been greatly respected and will be missed.





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