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METRO ARTS JOINS NATIONAL “LEADING ORGANIZATIONS” PILOT TO SHARE SUCCESSFUL PROGRAMS TO BUILD STRONGER NEIGHBORHOODS AND COMMUNITIES

July 27, 2015

METRO ARTS JOINS NATIONAL “LEADING ORGANIZATIONS” PILOT TO SHARE

SUCCESSFUL PROGRAMS TO BUILD STRONGER NEIGHBORHOODS AND COMMUNITIES

Minnesota-Based Creative Exchange Develops Coalition of Arts Organizations

 

NASHVILLE, Tenn., July 27, 2015 – The Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission (Metro Arts) has been named an inaugural member of the "Leading Organizations" Pilot, a diverse national coalition of arts organizations dedicated to sharing ideas that build stronger communities through the arts.

The “Leading Organizations” Pilot, created by Creative Exchange in Minneapolis, Minnesota, will develop toolkits, based on successful, community-specific programs, that will assist cities that look to replicate the program in their individual communities.

“Metro Arts is a learning organization. By working with peers across the country we can both share our best practices and learn how other communities are empowering artists as change agents,” said Jennifer Cole, executive director of Metro Arts.

Other organizations included in the pilot program are the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), Macon Arts Alliance of Macon, Georgia, Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana in San Jose, California, and Springboard for the Arts, Creative Exchange's parent organization in St. Paul, Minnesota.              

“We recognize that many communities need more resources to creatively address local economic, social and cultural challenges, and that these organizations and the communities they serve can be strengthened by the sharing of knowledge, expertise, and resources," said Laura Zabel, executive director of Springboard for the Arts.

Zabel said “Leading Organizations” is Creative Exchange’s next steps to highlight and connect the movement of local arts and culture on a national scale. Although “Leading Organizations” members represent geographically broad communities of different sizes, with diverse populations and unique histories, each member is engaged in arts-focused community development and engagement work.

"These are organizations supporting artists in their communities, creating new opportunities and acting as bridges and connection points in broader community conversations. They believe, as we do, that artists are a creative force in each neighborhood, and can help us step up and creatively face the challenges of our times,” Zabel said.

Cole said Metro Arts was selected to participate because “because of our focus on the development of artists as community placemakers through efforts like our public art bicycle-rack program and the THRIVE microfund project.”

Throughout the next year, the “Leading Organizations” members will share ideas and working practices to strengthen each other’s work. Creative Exchange will publish stories about artists with impact in their communities and will collaborate to develop shareable toolkits from the Leading Organizations’ proven, effective programming. 

About Creative Exchange

Dedicated to helping communities mobilize the powerful, creative force of artists to solve local challenges, Creative Exchange is a national hub where community leaders and artists come together to share proven ideas and success stories for building stronger neighborhoods and cities. Recognizing that many local governments, community organizations, nonprofits and arts groups lack the resources to develop innovative programs from scratch, Creative Exchange offers free toolkits, consultation and networking to help communities collaborate with artists in replicating successful programs that creatively address economic, social, and cultural issues. Based in St. Paul, Minnesota, Creative Exchange is a national initiative of Springboard for the Arts. Creative Exchange is supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Surdna Foundation and Kresge Foundation, with content partnerships with the National Endowment for the Arts and Aspen Institute Arts Program. 

About the Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission (Metro Arts)

The Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission, a commission of the Metropolitan Nashville Government, drives a more equitable and vibrant community through the arts. Metro Arts receives operational support from the Tennessee Arts Commission, and additional information is available online at www.artsnashville.org.