NASAA Notes: May 2021


May issue
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May 3, 2021

NASAA News and Current Information

Is It Time to Refill Your Well?

If more than a year of pandemic related adaptation and stress is depleting your reserves, NASAA offers a session that will help replenish your energies: Refilling the Well. This participatory session features a roundtable discussion with your state arts agency colleagues on well-being at the workplace, along with practices to build resilience. Part of the ongoing NASAA 2021 Learning Series, this session is free and open to the staff and council/board members of state arts agencies and regional arts organizations. Register and join us!

Upcoming NASAA Events Calendar

NASAA has corralled our upcoming learning sessions and peer group meetings in one place: the Upcoming NASAA Events Calendar. Find a link to the calendar at the top of the Events & Seminars page, and use this handy reference to see what’s coming up next!

NASAA Empowers the Arts!

This month NASAA launches our spring campaign, inviting you to help us with the advocacy work that strengthens everything state arts agencies do. Through thick and thin, NASAA is here for you, bringing you the credible resources, research and data that helps you move your work forward. With your participation, we can build a strong and resilient future for our communities and our country through the arts. Our goal is to raise $25,000 by May 31, and your support at whatever level that’s meaningful to you gets us there. Make a one-time gift or become a monthly donor today. Thank you!

Susannah Johannsen Is New ED in Louisiana

The Louisiana Office of Cultural Development and the Louisiana State Arts Council have appointed Susannah Johannsen as the new executive director of the Division of the Arts. Having previously served as director of economic development and certified local government coordinator for Louisiana Main Street, Johannsen began her new role with the Division of the Arts in April. Johannsen has more than 20 years of experience managing projects and teams in strategic planning, federal grant management and community development. In her most recent role with Louisiana Main Street, she worked with 49 Certified Local Government communities and 35 Main Street communities across Louisiana to strengthen business development, combat blight and urge revitalization. During the last three quarters of 2020, which took place during the pandemic, Main Street communities in Louisiana reported the opening of 112 new businesses, adding 330 new jobs. Originally from Charlotte, North Carolina, Johannsen studied Art History at Randolph-Macon Women’s College in Lynchburg, Virginia. She holds master’s degrees in landscape architecture and business administration from Louisiana State University (LSU). Johannsen serves on several area boards, including the Friends of the LSU Museum of Art, LSU Museum of Art Advisory Board, Baton Rouge Gallery, and the Big River Economic & Agricultural Development Alliance.

Jaime Dempsey to Depart Arizona Commission on the Arts

Arizona Commission on the Arts Executive Director Jaime Dempsey will leave her position in June, when she takes on the role of senior vice president for philanthropic initiatives with the Arizona Community Foundation. Dempsey began her tenure with the arts commission in 2006 as deputy director. In 2017, she became executive director following the retirement of her predecessor, Robert C. Booker. Dempsey has led a team dedicated to reimagining the role of a state arts agency in relationship with arts practitioners and community members, prioritizing agility, responsiveness, and diverse intra- and cross-sector partnerships. During Dempsey’s tenure, the arts commission endeavored to provide more assertive leadership on behalf of a complex, multidimensional arts sector, and to actively undo hierarchical practices and barriers to access. Dempsey¬†currently serves as a member of the board of directors for Grantmakers in the Arts. She completed a 2013 Flinn-Brown Fellowship with the Arizona Center for Civic Leadership, receiving the center’s 2018 Network Builder Award, and received a 2017 Gabe Zimmerman Award for Public Service from the Center for the Future of Arizona. Dempsey considers her experience as a collaborative performing artist to be central to her perspectives and practices across all areas of her work. The arts commission has begun planning an open public search for a successor. Upon Dempsey’s departure, Arts Commission Deputy Director Alex Nelson will serve as interim executive director.

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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