NASAA Notes: September 2020


September issue
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September 1, 2020

NASAA News and Current Information

September NASAA Learning Series SessionsNASAA’s virtual learning series, Shifting Policy and Practice: Insights and Actions for States, got off to a terrific start and continues through October 22. Don’t miss these September sessions:

  • This week, on September 2, Building Bridges in a Time of Crisis looks at what arts funders and advocates can do to respond to social emergencies.
  • On September 17, Equity Choice Points unveils a new tool from NASAA and explores practical tactics for reducing funding barriers due to bias.

Register today for these sessions or the remaining sessions in the series. Registration is FREE for all staff and council members of state arts agencies and regional arts organizations.

Learning Series Videos + Captioning: Pivot – Parts 1 & 2

After each NASAA Learning Series session concludes, we upload the session video to our YouTube page. In addition, to make our learning series content more accessible, each session is live-captioned. Check out the videos and captioned documents from our just-finished Pivot – Part 1 and Pivot – Part 2 sessions on our 2020 Shifting Policy and Practice Learning Series YouTube playlist.

NASAA People of Color Affinity Group Meets September 14

NASAA is pleased to announce that the fall People of Color Affinity Group meeting will take place on Monday, September 14, from 4:00 – 5:00 p.m. Eastern. The People of Color Affinity Group, a NASAA members-led group open to all state and regional arts agency staff and council members who identify as persons of color, recognizes that the voices and efforts of people of color within the state arts agency network are powerful and necessary to advance racial justice. As our country continues to fight racial injustice and inequity, the affinity group will be a key advisory voice in further shaping NASAA’s diversity, equity and inclusion activities, policies and programs. If you identify as a person of color and are on the staff or council of a state arts agency or regional arts organization, and would like to join the affinity group or attend the meeting, please contact NASAA’s Marisa Summers at or 202-347-6353. We welcome your input and insight.

Equity and Capacity Building

Nonprofit organizations of color and nonprofits serving communities of color struggle with capacity building challenges arising from systemic racism. A number of foundations illustrated their commitment to racial equity and justice in the wake of the recent racial tension in the United States. The COVID-19 pandemic further heightened equity disparities among communities of color across the nation. Conventional approaches to capacity building—such as tools or resources designed by white or white-led nonprofits or consultants—have had limited success or have been inaccessible to nonprofits of color. Transformational Capacity Building, a recent article by the Stanford Social Innovation Review, explores these challenges and discusses seven diverse approaches that can address the pitfalls of conventional capacity building and offer ways of creating necessary shifts for more equitable outcomes.

Readiness in Your Pocket

ArtsReady and the Performing Arts Readiness project have released the Pocket Response Resource, a document that would provide immediate access to information artists and arts organizations need in the first minutes and hours of any type of emergency. On one side the organization notes critical contact information and, on the other, critical action steps such as evacuation, crisis communications, situational assessment, and prioritizing assets to be protected or salvaged. The Pocket Response Resource neatly folds into a credit card-sized piece for all staff, crew and volunteers to carry on their person—or can be available to view on a device.

Keep Connected

Like so many organizations, NASAA is adapting our programs and services to the current challenges and realities of the time. Instead of our annual conference, our special virtual learning series, Shifting Policy and Practice: Insights and Actions for States, began last week. We’re also facilitating extra online peer group meetings to keep you connected to your colleagues. These professional development programs connect you to the only other people that fully understand your struggles and triumphs as public-sector arts leaders—and they build on our strength as a community, so that together we can accomplish more! When you support NASAA with a personal contribution, you help provide professional development programs that meet you where you are with relevant and timely topics. Please give to NASAA today to support opportunities to learn from and with each other—we’re in this together and we do better together. Thank you!

In this Issue

From the President and CEO

State to State

Legislative Update

The Research Digest

Announcements and Resources

More Notes from NASAA




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