NASAA Notes: January 2021


January issue
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January 5, 2021

NASAA News and Current Information

You Made It Happen!

Thank you, thank you, thank you! NASAA met (and surpassed!) our $25,000 match—which means we’ll get an additional $25,000, for a total of $50,000. A great success and an awesome way to begin the New Year. We’re grateful to everyone who participated in our 25 for 50 matching gift campaign—your support strengthens state arts agencies and helps grow public support for the arts. With you by our side, we’re invigorated and ready to rise up and meet new challenges in our ever-changing world. Thank you!

Creative Placemaking Guide for Local Government Managers

Problem Solving through Arts and Cultural Strategies is new resource from ICMA (International City/County Management Association) that explores ways municipal leaders can leverage the arts, culture and community-engaged strategies to achieve innovative, creative and more equitable outcomes. Supported by ArtPlace America and developed in partnership with Civic Arts and other advisors, the publication demonstrates how outside-the-box processes can offer new ways for government staff and community stakeholders to communicate, build trust and collaborate. The guide includes case studies, testimonials, and links to tools and additional resources, along with prompts to help managers consider how these approaches might benefit their own communities.

Michael J. Bobbitt to Join Mass Cultural Council as ED

Photo by Craig Bailey/Perspective Photo

Mass Cultural Council has selected Michael J. Bobbitt as executive director. He will join the agency on February 1. A director, choreographer and playwright, Bobbitt is currently artistic director of the New Repertory Theatre in Watertown, Massachusetts. He held the same position at Adventure Theatre-MTC in Maryland for 12 years, leading the organization to be a respected theatre/training company in the Washington, D.C., region, as well as a nationally influential professional Theatre for Young Audiences. He led a merger with Musical Theater Center, increased the organizational budget and audience, commissioned new works by noted playwrights, transferred two shows to Off-Broadway, built an academy, and earned dozens of Helen Hayes Award nominations, garnering eight wins. Bobbitt gained extensive experience in nonprofit arts management by training at Harvard Business School’s Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management, The National Arts Strategies Chief Executive Program, and Cornell University’s Diversity and Inclusion Certification Program. He has served as an associate professor of theatre at Boston Conservatory at Berklee and has volunteered on numerous nonprofit boards, including Non-Profit Village, Maryland Citizens for the Arts, Leadership Montgomery, Weissberg Foundation, Watertown Public Art Commission and ArtsBoston. He is a member of MASSCreative’s Policy Committee. Bobbitt has directed/choreographed at Arena Stage, Ford’s Theatre, The Shakespeare Theatre Company, Olney Theatre Center, Studio Theatre, Woolly Mammoth Theatre, Center Stage, Round House Theatre, The Kennedy Center and the Washington National Opera. His national and international credits include the NY Musical Theatre Festival, Mel Tillis 2001, La Jolla Playhouse, Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, Jefferson Performing Arts Center and the Olympics. As a writer, his work was chosen for the NYC International Fringe Festival and The New York and Musical Theatre Festival. He has plays published by Concord Theatricals/Rogers and Hammerstein Theatricals, Broadway Publishing and Plays for Young Audiences. Bobbitt has received the Excel Leadership Award (Center for Nonprofit Advancement), the Emerging Leader Award (County Executive’s Excellence in the Arts and Humanities), and Person of the Year Award (Maryland Theatre Guide). Bobbitt will succeed Anita Walker, who retired on June 30, 2020. Since July, Mass Cultural Council has been led by Acting Executive Director/Deputy Director David T. Slatery, in close collaboration with his senior leadership team, Operations Director Jen Lawless and Public Affairs Director Bethann Steiner.

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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