2021 Member Briefings

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2021 Member Briefings

Member Briefings are our opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

Topics will be announced approximately two weeks prior to the scheduled briefing.

We firmly believe that our #AFTAmember network is one of our strongest resources, so after our update, we’ll open the floor up to your questions, comments, recommendations, and lessons learned – we hope you’ll take advantage of each other’s expertise!

March 2021

Topic: First Look At the 2021 National Arts Action Summit

Date: March 30, 2021

July 2021

Topic: Equitable Recruitment and Support through Internships

Date: July 13, 2021

August 2021

Topic: Advocate and Celebrate During National Arts & Humanities Month

Date: August 17, 2021

December 2021

Topic: 2021 Looking Back and Looking Forward

Date: December 14, 2021

 

  • December 2021 Member Briefing

    Contains 2 Component(s) Includes a Live Web Event on 12/14/2021 at 3:00 PM (EST)

    Member Briefings are our monthly opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

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    December 2021 Member Briefing 

    December 14 at 3:00PM

       

    About the Member Briefing


    Stay tuned for more details!

    Member Briefings are our monthly opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

    Nolen V. Bivens

    President and CEO

    Americans for the Arts

    Nolen V. Bivens, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts, is a former U.S. Army General and serves as chair of the National Leadership Advisory Council, the National Initiative for Arts & Health Across the Military (NIAHM); military community advisor for the National Endowment for the Arts Military Healing Arts Network’s Creative Forces program, and senior Policy Fellow on Arts & Military.

    Bivens is president of Leader Six, Inc. and has executive leadership experience delivering successful results for public, private sector, and nonprofit organizations with $1B (+) in annual revenue, including strategic business development and sales at the VP level for a top four defense corporation, General Dynamics Mission Systems. A retired U.S. Army Brigadier General, he’s held leadership and staff positions from company through Army and Joint Pentagon Staff and U.S. Combatant and Special Operations Command levels. He has testified before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, and co-chairs the National Leadership Advisory Committee for NIAHM. He has been guest speaker for national nonprofit conferences, the Aspen Seminar for Leadership in the Arts; and is a contributing writer for the Smithsonian Institution, HuffPost, and American for the Arts’ social media.

    Bivens holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from South Carolina State University, a Master of Science in Management from the Naval Post Graduate School, and a Master of Science in National Security and Strategic Studies from the National Defense University.

  • August Member Briefing: Advocate and Celebrate During National Arts & Humanities Month

    Contains 2 Component(s) Recorded On: 08/17/2021

    Member Briefings are our monthly opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

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    August 2021 Member Briefing 

    August 17 at 3:00PM

       

    About the Member Briefing


    October is National Arts & Humanities Month—a coast-to-coast collective recognition of the importance of culture in America, and now is the time to start planning your celebration! In this Member Briefing, learn how you can use National Arts & Humanities Month to advocate for the arts and raise awareness about its role in our communities and lives not just for the month, but throughout the entire year.

    The Americans for the Arts Government Affairs and Marketing & Communications teams will highlight ways you can get involved, including:

    • Asking for a local government proclamation. Your mayor, city council, and even your governor can officially declare National Arts & Humanities Month.
    • Joining national advocacy efforts.
    • Getting the word out to your local media outlets.
    • Taking part in our 31-day Instagram challenge.

    Join us on August 17 at 3 p.m. to start planning your National Arts & Humanities Month celebration and advocacy efforts.

    Speakers:

    • Jay Dick, Senior Director of State and Local Government Affairs
    • Lauren Cohen, Government Affairs and Grassroots Manager
    • Ann Marie Watson, Senior Manager, Digital Communications Strategy

    Jay Dick

    Senior Director of State and Local Government Affairs

    Americans for the Arts

    Jay Dick is the Senior Director of State and Local Government Affairs at Americans for the Arts where he works to educate and inform elected officials about the value of the arts and culture.  As a twenty-five-year veteran of K Street, Capitol Hill, the private sector, and federal, state, and local campaigns, Jay has a broad body of knowledge in the field of arts policy, government, the legislative process, and grassroots advocacy.  

    With the mandate to positively affect the policies that promote state and local funding and expansion of the arts, Jay works closely with the Americans for the Arts’ members, local arts agencies, state arts advocacy organizations, state arts agencies and other key stakeholders to accomplish this goal.  Further, he oversees Americans for the Arts’ Public Partnerships and works closely with the members and staffs of the Western Governors Association, National Governors Association, National Lt. Governors Association, National Conference of State Legislators, National Association of Counties, the National League of Cities and ICMA (city/county managers).

    Jay is a past Commissioner for the Virginia Commission for the Arts and he also served on the Board of ARTSFAIRFAX where he chaired their advocacy committee. 

    Advocacy for the arts is his job but also his passion. 

    Lauren Cohen

    Government Affairs and Grassroots Manager

    Americans for the Arts

    At Americans for the Arts, Lauren works with the Federal Affairs team in federal lobbying and government affairs activities, including composing position statements, monitoring federal legislation, drafting legislative proposals, coalition building with the Congressional Arts Caucus and other Congressional staff.  She enjoys teaching others how to become compelling arts advocates and how to pursue strong arts policy.  Prior to joining Americans for the Arts, Lauren worked for a member of Congress in the U.S. House of Representatives for over two years where she managed the arts, humanities, and museums portfolio.  Before coming to Washington, DC, Lauren worked for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in Williamsburg, Virginia.  There, she held positions in the Education Outreach, Historical Interpretations, and Curatorial departments.  Lauren earned her Master of Arts degree in Public History from James Madison University and her Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Tennessee.  Lauren's passion for the arts began at age three when she first started ballet lessons and continues to this day as she enjoys dance and theater performances, museums, and art shows.

    Ann Marie Watson

    Senior Manager, Digital Communications Strategy

    Americans for the Arts

    Ann Marie Watson joined Americans for the Arts in June 2016. As Senior Manager, Digital Communications Strategy, she serves as the managing editor of ARTSblog and directs social media strategy and content for @americans4arts accounts, including organic daily posting and paid advertising for events and programming. Previously in her nonprofit arts and culture career, she was Marketing Communications Manager at the Newseum, a museum dedicated to the First Amendment, and worked at Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater in a range of roles from public relations intern to Creative Director for External Affairs. Ann Marie is a graduate of the University of Virginia, an enthusiastic blood donor, and a volunteer in local community theater.

  • July 2021 Member Briefing: Equitable Recruitment and Support Through Internships

    Contains 2 Component(s) Recorded On: 07/13/2021

    Member Briefings are our monthly opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

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    July 2021 Member Briefing 

    About The Member Briefing


    Equitable Recruitment and Support Through Internships

    Diversity in Arts Leadership (DIAL) internship program, administered by Americans for the Arts and national partners, matches undergraduate students from backgrounds underrepresented in arts leadership with communities, host arts organizations, and mentors, to guide students’ personal and professional growth throughout the summer.

    At the July Member Briefing, the DIAL team will share their challenges and successes managing an internship program, advancing diversity in the arts management field, and providing the newest members of the workforce with real-world career experience. Along with the Americans for the Arts team, Sing for Hope’s Lester Vrtiak, Director of Artist Engagement and DIAL intern, Harrison Clark will also share their experiences as a host arts organization and intern in the program. Join us on July 13 at 3 p.m. ET to learn more about the DIAL internship program and strategies to manage and recruit candidates to your own internship program.

    Speakers:

    • Harrison Clark, DIAL intern, Sing for Hope
    • Lester Vrtiak, Director of Sing for Hope Pianos, Sing for Hope
    • Nikki Kirk, Program Manager, Equity in Arts Leadership, Americans for the Arts

    Nikki Kirk

    Equity in Arts Leadership Program Manager

    Americans for the Arts

    Nikki joined Americans for the Arts in February 2020. As the Equity in Arts Leadership Program Manager, she will work to envision, design, and implement programs to improve the entry, advancement, and leadership opportunities for historically and currently marginalized or underrepresented arts administrators in the arts and culture field.

    Nikki holds a Bachelor's degree in Political Linguistics from Pitzer College in southern California, where she solidified her interests in language, human rights, and cross-cultural understanding. She also holds a Master's degree in Arts, Festival, and Cultural Management from Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh, Scotland, where she researched the impact of programming at the intersection of arts and social justice.Her previous work experiences include organizations across the US, such as the Massachusetts Cultural Council, El Sistema USA, Berklee College of Music, and The Center for Arts-Inspired Learning, among others.

    Lester Vrtiak

    Director of Artist Engagement

    Sing for Hope

    One of Lester’s favorite memories growing up is gathering aroundthe living room piano and singing songs with friends and family. Little did heknow, moments like that can happen in any place at any time, and Lester isthrilled to be bringing the joy of art and music to the community.

    With ten years of non-profit experience, Lester helps bring theSing for Hope Pianos program to live both in NYC and across theglobe, creating pockets of living room singalongs throughoutpublic spaces for everyone to be a part of. Check out more of Lester’sexperience with the SFH Pianos in his TEDxBroadway talk here.

    Harrison Clark

    DIAL Intern

    Sing for Hope

    Harrison Clark (he/him/his) is a junior at Tufts University majoring in International Relations with a language concentration in Arabic. A composer, lyricist, and playwright, Harrison has dedicated his artistry to the celebration, performance, preservation, and advancement of Black Art in America. At Tufts, he serves as music director for the S-Factor vocal group, conducts archival research on the institutional legacies of Black art and artistry, and serves on the Tufts Diversity Admissions Council. Currently, Harrison is writing his first stage musical, an original story concerning questions of cultural and artistic agency from the perspective of young Black artists. His ultimate goal is, through his artistry and advocacy, to unlock the gates to a reimagined future in which anti-Blackness is removed from the foundational DNA of the arts in the United States and globally. Harrison is eager to get to know the world of nonprofit arts leadership this summer through DIAL. 

  • March 2021 Member Briefing: First Look at the 2021 National Arts Action Summit

    Contains 2 Component(s) Recorded On: 03/30/2021

    Member Briefings are our quarterly opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

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    About the Member Briefing

    March 30 at 3:00PM

    As we work together to see the arts and culture sector recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and shutdowns, local and national advocacy efforts will be a critical tool. The 2021 National Arts Action Summit, on April 5-9, will prepare advocates with data and resources to educate federal decisionmakers on why supporting the arts and culture sector is essential.  

    Join us for a preview of the National Arts Action Summit and a legislative update at this month’s member briefing! The Americans for the Arts Government Affairs team will highlight this year’s legislative priorities and the sessions designed to support the advocacy efforts of local, state, and national arts organizations. 

    Please note that Americans for the Arts is offering full registration support for this year’s Summit for anyone who would otherwise be unable to participate. 

    Speakers: 

    • Narric Rome, Vice President of Government Affairs and Arts Education 
    • Lauren Cohen, Government Affairs and Grassroots Manager 

    About Member Briefings

    Member Briefings are our quarterly opportunity to talk to you about what’s happening now! These calls will take place once a quarter, so mark your calendars to stay up-to-date on what’s happening at Americans for the Arts and across the sector. These calls are for you, so let us know if there’s a topic you’d like to know more about by contacting membership at membership@artsusa.org.

    Narric Rome

    Vice President of Government Affairs and Arts Education

    Americans for the Arts

    Narric Rome serves as Vice President for Government Affairs and Arts Education at Americans for the Arts.  In his role he manages federal, state, and local government advocacy, grassroots campaigns, policy development, and national coalition-building efforts with cultural, civic, and private sector organizations with the goal of influencing public policies that advance direct and indirect support for the arts and arts education.

    Narric is responsible for promoting the Americans for the Arts’ message to Congress and the Trump Administration. He serves as the senior lobbyist for the Americans for the Arts legislative portfolio where he researches and pursues untapped federal funding opportunities. Additionally, he is editor of a dozen resource guides connecting cultural projects and initiatives to federal funding programs.

    Narric’s responsibilities include leading the policy development for the annual National Arts Action Summit, including Arts Advocacy Day, which involves coordinating over 85 arts organizations as national partners. Narric oversees the Americans for the Arts education program that seeks equitable access to the arts and includes the State Policy Pilot Program, and advocacy programs at the national, state and local levels. Most recently, Narric has launched a national campaign to boost the creative economy by building support for the CREATE Act (S.661, HR1649) in Congress. Narric has 20 years of experience in the public policy and congressional arena.  Prior to joining Americans for the Arts, Narric worked on the policy staff of Howard Dean's 2004 presidential campaign in Vermont and served as a legislative aide to Secretary Riley at the U.S. Department of Education where he received the Peer Recognition Award in 1999.  Earlier in his career, Narric worked on Capitol Hill, at the Podesta Group and on several state and national political campaigns. He is the immediate past-president of the Vermont State Society.

    Lauren Cohen

    Government Affairs and Grassroots Manager

    Americans for the Arts

    At Americans for the Arts, Lauren works with the Federal Affairs team in federal lobbying and government affairs activities, including composing position statements, monitoring federal legislation, drafting legislative proposals, coalition building with the Congressional Arts Caucus and other Congressional staff.  She enjoys teaching others how to become compelling arts advocates and how to pursue strong arts policy.  Prior to joining Americans for the Arts, Lauren worked for a member of Congress in the U.S. House of Representatives for over two years where she managed the arts, humanities, and museums portfolio.  Before coming to Washington, DC, Lauren worked for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in Williamsburg, Virginia.  There, she held positions in the Education Outreach, Historical Interpretations, and Curatorial departments.  Lauren earned her Master of Arts degree in Public History from James Madison University and her Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Tennessee.  Lauren's passion for the arts began at age three when she first started ballet lessons and continues to this day as she enjoys dance and theater performances, museums, and art shows.