Animating Democracy November 2010 E-News
Animating Democracy News and Updates

New Animating Democracy Report on Arts & Social Change Grantmaking

Americans for the Arts has released the report, Trend or Tipping Point: Arts & Social Change Grantmaking. The report, developed by Animating Democracy, a program of Americans for the Arts, assembles a first-of-its-kind portrait of arts funders, social change funders, and others supporting civic engagement and social change through arts and cultural strategies. It includes a companion online Directory of Funders that profiles more than 150 grantmakers who support arts strategies to make community, social, and civic change. Both resources are available online at These resources are part of Animating Democracy’s Arts & Social Change Mapping Initiative, supported by the Nathan Cummings Foundation, CrossCurrents Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Lambent Foundation, and Surdna Foundation. For more information, e-mail Animating Democracy Program Coordinator Joanna Chin at

Animating Democracy Travels Abroad

November found Animating Democracy’s co-directors far flung across the globe. Pam Korza was in Seoul, South Korea as one of three featured speakers at a one-day international symposium, The Role of Art in the Public Domain. Invited by Seoul Art Space Geumcheon and the Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture, Korza introduced 250 artists, scholars, students, and cultural and city agency leaders to the work of Animating Democracy. She put the specific work of Animating Democracy in fostering civic engagement through arts and culture in a broader context of community arts in the United States and its role in community building, development, and civic engagement.

Barbara Schaffer Bacon represented the United States at Taking Part: Papers, Provocations And Performances, a two-day conference on community engagement and participatory arts sponsored by Goldsmiths College and the South Banke Center in London. Also participating from the United States were artists Marty Pottenger (Art at Work, Portland, ME); Shannon Scrofano (Sojourn Theater and California Institute of Art); and Jeffrey Solomon (Houses of the Moon Theater).

News from the Field

Winners Announced in Strong Communities Competition

Three grand prize winners in the Strong Communities: Engaging Citizens, Strengthening Place, Inspiring Change competition were announced last Friday at the CommunityMatters’10 Conference in Denver, Colorado. Sustainable Jersey (New Jersey), Sustain-A-Raisers (New Hampshire), and Network Organizing (Kentucky) each received a $5,000 grand prize to put toward advancing their endeavors. For more information on the winning organizations and the contest itself, please visit

New Office of Community Engagement at MICA

Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) announces its new Office of Community Engagement (OCE), which will assess, strengthen, and coordinate MICA’s academically based community partnerships. MICA has a strong history of engaging academic and community partners—locally and globally—to address issues, build community, and facilitate change. The new office will provide oversight to existing initiatives on campus; develop and coordinate new programs; facilitate collaboration with external partners; and provide visibility and support for community engagement and service-learning initiatives that advance the mission of the College. OCE comprises two new positions at the college—the Director of Community Engagement Karen Stults, who will lead the office, and the Program Manager for MICA PLACE Kristy Taylor, along with the current coordinator Dr. Francesca Gamber, and assistant of MICA’s Community Art Collaborative (CAC) Julie Lin. For the full story, see

WomenArts Receives Cummings Grant to Build Partnerships

WomenArts received $75,000 from the Nathan Cummings Foundation for its Feminist Cultural Partnership program. The grant is aimed at stimulating partnerships between women’s organizations and women artists who are addressing similar themes. WomenArts intends to use SWAN Day as a catalyst for these partnerships, as well as build partnerships in San Francisco and New York.

Publications and Resources

White Paper Examines Social Change through Films
The Fledgling Fund has released a new white paper as  part of its effort to deepen understanding of the processes that support film contributing to social change. Please read the 2010 paper, “From Distribution to Audience Engagement” at Distribution to Audience Engagment.pdf.

The Communication Initiative Network’s Drum Beat: Theatre for Development

The Communication Initiative (The CI) network is an online space for sharing the experiences of, and building bridges between, the people and organizations engaged in or supporting communication as a fundamental strategy for economic and social development and change.

The November 8 issue of The CI’s e-magazine, Drum Beat, focuses on theater being utilized as a tool for international development, policy dialogue, health, and developing life skills.  To read this issue, visit

Calls for Proposals

Call for Artists to Perform at ROOTS Fest 2011: Many Communities, One Voice
June 22–26, 2011
Baltimore, MD

Alternate ROOTS is pleased to announce artist opportunities to perform at ROOTS Fest 2011: Many Communities, One Voice, a national arts festival celebrating the very best of our nation’s local art in honor of ROOTS’ 35th Anniversary. ROOTS Fest 2011 will be held June 22–26, 2011 in Baltimore, MD. As part of this national event, five days and evenings of local, regional, and national performances, workshops, case studies, community dialogues, and more will be presented.

Call for Nominations for the 2011 John W. Gardner Leadership Award
Deadline: January 31, 2011

Independent Sector is now accepting nominations for the 2011 John W. Gardner Leadership Award, which recognizes an individual whose leadership in or with the nonprofit and philanthropic community has been transformative and who has mobilized and unified people, institutions, or causes that improve lives. The award will be presented at the 2011 Independent Sector Annual Conference in Chicago, October 30–November 1.