Part 3: Moving as Equals
About Part 3
Further building on Parts 1 and 2 of the How to Partner with Your Chamber of Commerce Series, participants will look to rural communities and consider how innovative partnerships can be used as inspiration or scaled to suburban and urban areas for long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationships. This module will explore practical ways of orienting local economies around "Quality of Place" and of rethinking the individual roles of arts and business in a local economy. It will demonstrate how navigating public/private partnerships can strengthen the relationship between the business and arts sectors. This module will explore, in varying depth, case studies in multiple rural communities, and highlight how these arts and chamber entities have worked together to build community wealth, deepen alliances, and expand opportunity for artists and businesses alike. This Part will ask the questions: When the LAA is seen as a respected and equal partner to their chamber and economic development entities, what are you advocating for together? What can you do together that you can’t do alone?
Participants are encouraged to use the toolkit as complimentary learning, and participate in a live discussion with presenters once completing the 3-part on-demand webinar series.
Session 1: Policy, Politics and Resource Distribution
What can you do when you’ve built trust with key players throughout the community? When elected leaders come and go, how do you create consistency with your partners? How do you navigate local politics alongside your chamber and strive to adopt forward-thinking economic and civic ideals in your community? How can you best integrate arts & culture into conversations in which they've traditionally been left out? This session will present a moderated conversation to get to the bottom of some of these key questions in order to build strong alliances meant to last.
- Participants will learn how to take on the role of arts advocate in their respective communities and will explore concrete strategies for effective advocacy.
- Participants will explore how to navigate policy and civic norms within their chamber partnerships in pursuit of shared goals.
- Participants will hear examples of productive arts, local government, and chamber conversations, as well as the process by which these conversations have led to partnerships and ensuing action.
Session 2 – Reimagining Your Assets to Create Alignment with Your Chamber
After working to build trust and relationship with your chamber(s) of commerce, how can LAAs see themselves beyond running in their lane; beyond managing a facility; or providing grants? How can you creatively leverage these private sector partners whether through recognition, collaboration, sharing networks, or developing community-driven development goals? This session will explore examples of how local arts agencies can recognize their own organizational and community assets to multiply community impact.
- Participants will hear examples of how local arts leaders have creatively leveraged chamber partnerships to achieve goals or exchange assets.
- Participants will explore ways to generate revenue via complex chamber and municipal partnerships that engage the business community.
- Participants will hear of visionary examples for community, business, and economic development that coordinate arts and chamber activities.
Session 3 – Moving as Equals: Accomplishing Long-Term Development Goals
This session explores complex partnerships and projects that center equity and push both the chamber and arts entities to move outside their normal comfort zones. It focuses on how local communities have challenged traditional arts-business relationships, orienting them instead around a shared "Quality of Place" ideal, and implementing programs to allow for deeper integration and collaboration between the sectors and their respective communities.
- What steps would it take for your community to shift traditional economic values towards more community-focused, inclusive practices?
- As an equal and respected partner alongside your chamber, how are you working together to identify mutual goals and needs, and aligning them within the programs, services, and resources you offer? If you haven't formed this partnership yet, what are some initial steps you could take to establish it?
What groundwork would need to be laid in order for these partnerships and programs to be sustainable beyond the initial excitement? What about even beyond the tenures of the individuals responsible for starting these partnerships?
ARTSU SUPPORT PROGRAM
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Vice President, Economic and Community Development
Economic Alliance of York County
Silas Chamberlin, PhD, is vice president of economic and community development at the York County Economic Alliance, a position in which he serves as executive director of the Redevelopment Authority of the County of York and oversees a variety of economic financing, business attraction, entrepreneurship, and workforce development initiatives throughout York County. In 2020, Silas led the creation of York County's new 10-year economic development plan, which ultimately convened 1,000+ stakeholders to cast a bold vision for people-focused and place-based economic development. He founded and oversees the York County Trail Towns program—now active in 7 communities—and is leading development of the $75 million Codorus Greenway, the largest green infrastructure project in the City of York’s history.
Silas holds a PhD in environmental history from Lehigh University and certificate in commercial real estate development from Cornell University. He is the author of On the Trail: A History of American Hiking, published by Yale University Press in 2016. Silas is past chair of the Pennsylvania Humanities Council, current corporate secretary of the PA Downtown Center's board of directors, and serves as a Governor’s appointee to PA’s Conservation & Natural Resources Advisory Council.
Cultural Alliance York County
Kelley Gibson is the President of the Cultural Alliance of York County, South-Central Pennsylvania’s only United Arts Fund, efficiently raising and re-granting critical operating support for arts and culture organizations and artists. As President, Kelley is responsible for the day to day leadership, management and success of the organization, including grant management, staff development, fund development, fiscal management, and relationship building with business, government and the community.
With 20 years of experience working with arts, culture, and community organizations for the betterment of York, Kelley’s areas of expertise include grant-making, fundraising and special event planning.
Director of Strategic Initiatives
Fund for the Arts
Kate Gipson is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at Fund for the Arts where she heads the Arts in Neighborhoods, I Am An Artist. And NeXt! Ambassador initiatives. In addition to a career in non-profit and arts administration, she is a theatre-maker and educator. Prior to joining Fund for the Arts, Kate was the General Manager at StageOne Family Theatre in Louisville, KY, Manager of Workforce Development - Youth Services at Goodwill Denver, Associate Artistic Director at Curious Theatre Company in Denver, CO, and Education Director at New Stage Theatre in Jackson, MS. Some favorite accomplishments include producing the inaugural Local Performance Village at St. James Court Art Show (2022), co-producing the Colorado Creative Careers Festival in 2019, and After Orlando (2017) at Benchmark Theatre.
President & CEO, Monroe Chamber of Commerce
Monroe Chamber of Commerce
Executive Director, West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce; Main Street Assistant Manager, Columbia, LA; small business owner.
West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce
Kristopher Kelley serves as the Executive Director for the West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce, Main Street Assistant Manager for Columbia, LA, and is a small business owner. He is a local naturalist entrepreneur with over two decades of experience as a small business owner, non-profit consultant, biology instructor, and environmental chemist. He has worked not only for business development and promotional initiatives with local and regional government organizations; but also, with US Fish and Wildlife, US Corps of Engineers, and the USDA, just to name a few. He works tirelessly as a promoter of our local businesses, as an environmental educator, as the past regional chair for the American Chemical Society all while serving on the boards of 12 non-profits fully committed to advancing the mission of many arts organizations in our region. Kristopher is passionate about workforce development for our region, the role the arts play in developing quality citizens, historic preservation, and celebrating the natural diversity of Louisiana.
Chief Economic & Cultural Development Officer
City of Monroe, Louisiana
Kelsea McCrary is the Chief Economic & Cultural Development Officer for the City of Monroe. Her style of telling Louisiana’s stories elevates the artistic and cultural threads woven throughout each community and ties them deeply into the economic prospects of Louisiana’s cultural richness. Kelsea’s background includes leading the Cultural Districts and Civic Design program for the Louisiana Division of the Arts, creating the Public Policy communications brand at LUMEN Technologies and building out their Employer Brand function. Kelsea has grown arts organizations, programmed historic buildings, executed cultural events and quality of life initiatives, and led creative place-keeping projects throughout the state of Louisiana for nearly fifteen years. Her artistic background ranges from dance, to music, to design and visual art and her economic development areas of expertise focus on foundational aspects of the cultural economy in a community’s ability to thrive. She and her pup Murphy love to run levees and camp in state parks with her nieces, but there’s nowhere she’d rather be than sitting at her grandparents’ dinner table. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Louisiana Monroe and a Masters in Public Administration from Louisiana State University.
Vice President, Talent, Workforce & Brand Strategies
Greater Louisville Inc. | Live in Lou
Christine Tarquinio is Vice President for Talent, Workforce & Brand Strategies at Greater Louisville Inc. (GLI), the metro chamber of commerce in Louisville, KY. Prior to joining GLI, Christine worked in marketing, advertising and branding, representing local, regional, national and global brands like Fireball Whisky, Big O Tires, UofL, and the YMCA, among others. For over four years Christine has taken her marketing expertise and turned that to solving the region’s talent attraction, retention and workforce development issues. Christine currently serves on the board of directors for the American Advertising Federation – Louisville, and volunteers with the Kentucky Opera, Kosair Children’s Hospital Foundation and Family Scholar House. She is a NeXt! Arts Graduate, Certified Tourism Ambassador, SKAL member, Top 100 Influencer in Marketing & Advertising, and a Top 20 People to Know in Economic Development. To relax, Christine enjoys cooking and spending time with her husband, three kids and two dogs.
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