Arts, Culture, and Humanities

AMERICANS FOR THE ARTS INC

  • Washington, DC
  • www.americansforthearts.org

Mission Statement

Americans for the Arts' mission is to serve, advance, and lead the network of organizations and individuals who cultivate, promote, sustain, and support the arts in America.

Main Programs

  1. ADVOCACY
  2. PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
  3. RESEARCH & INFORMATION
  4. RECOGNITION & VISIBILITY
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

To achieve our goals, we partner with local, state, and national arts organizations; government agencies; business leaders; individual philanthropists; educators; and funders throughout the country.

ruling year

1997

President and CEO

Self-reported

Mr. Robert Lynch

Keywords

Self-reported

arts, advocacy, education, arts education, national, professional development, research, policy

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EIN

52-1996467

 Number

6352158267

Also Known As

Americans for the Arts

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (A01)

Research Institutes and/or Public Policy Analysis (A05)

Arts Service Activities/Organizations (A90)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

Americans for the Arts is dedicated to representing and serving local communities and creating opportunities for every American to participate in and appreciate all forms of the arts. In 2012 alone, Americans for the Arts:

- Served 2,747 organization and individual members nationwide, totally 6,360 individuals served;
- Recognized 28 public and private leaders for their support of the arts through its annual award programs;
- Hosted over 522 arts advocates at its annual Arts Advocacy Day;
- Convened and trained 1,562 individuals from 45 states at its two national conferences;
- Collected over 136,000 audience surveys and 5,000 organization surveys in 182 communities nationwide for its "Arts and Economic Prosperity IV" report, measuring the economic footprint of arts organizations across the country in 2011;
- Published over 11,000 customized Creative Industries reports for communities across the country;
- Allowed 220,000 messages to be sent through its free online system by citizens to local, state, and federal leaders to advocate for healthier arts and arts education policies; and
- Helped secure $146.255 million for the 2012 National Endowment for the Arts budget - over $11 million more than proposed by the House of Representatives.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

ADVOCACY

Americans for the Arts advocates for greater public and private support for the arts and arts education at the national level, while providing tools and training to people nationwide so that they can make the case for investment in their communities. Our aim is to trigger local, state, and federal leaders to see and understand the arts as a solution to the problems we face as a nation.

The Legislative Issue Center presents an overview of Americans for the Arts’ advocacy efforts, and provides our constituents with the tools to advocate for the arts in their own communities through the following information and services: E-advocacy through VoterVoice; issue briefs; legislative news and updates; useful research; information on advocacy events and registrations; links to State Arts Action Network members; and toolkits for individuals and organizations.

Arts Advocacy Day brings together a broad cross section of America's cultural and civic organizations, along with nearly 500 grassroots advocates representing 45 states across the country, to underscore the importance of developing strong public policies and appropriating increased public funding for the arts.

Category

None

Population(s) Served

General Public/Unspecified

None

None

Budget

Program 2

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Americans for the Arts technical assistance and training programs serve a wide array of arts professional based on where they are in their careers, the types of communities that they serve, targeted sectors within the field, and services that cross all three.

Six (6) networks allow Americans for the Arts to provide specialized resources addressing the needs of its constituencies and ensure peer-to-peer engagement. These affinity networks include the: Public Art Network, Private Sector Network, Arts Education Network, Emerging Leaders Network, United States Urban Arts Federation, and State Arts Action Network.

Two (2) main conferences offer training and networking opportunities to professionals in the field. Americans for the Arts’ Annual Convention convenes the largest gathering of arts and community leaders in the country to explore critical issues in the arts, and the annual National Arts Marketing Project (NAMP) Conference provides information, tools, and practical ideas for arts marketers and fundraisers to design high-quality, cost-effective marketing programs and strengthen arts organizations. The National Arts Marketing Project (NAMP) provides nonprofit marketing training through its annual conference, monthly webinars, quarterly E-books, regional training programs, and on-site workshops that offer must-have marketing resources to local constituencies.

Americans for the Arts also offers a series of webinars, high quality online professional development tools that are held regularly to provide online training resources for professional members.

Category

None

Population(s) Served

General Public/Unspecified

None

None

Budget

Program 3

RESEARCH & INFORMATION

Americans for the Arts champions a research-based understanding to how the arts are being used to address social, educational, and economic development issues in communities across the country. Ongoing initiatives include: Arts and Economic Prosperity, the national economic impact study on the nation’s nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences; The National Arts Index, a highly distilled annual measure of the health and vitality of the arts in the United States using 76 equal weighted, national-level indicators of arts activity; The Local Arts Index - a companion to The National Arts Index - which is designed to give communities across the nation a much needed tool to analyze the macro and micro trends impacting the health and vitality of local cultural organizations over time and to inform the collaborative work necessary to chart a course for a more sustainable future; Creative Industries, which uses Dun & Bradstreet data to map and report the number of arts-related businesses and employees in any geographic region or political jurisdiction in the country.

Category

None

Population(s) Served

General Public/Unspecified

None

None

Budget

Program 4

RECOGNITION & VISIBILITY

Through its national network and array of public and private sector partners, Americans for the Arts works to shine a spotlight on the contributions of the arts and arts education. Signature programs include: National Arts Awards, held during National Arts and Humanities Month, hosts 400 of America's top artists and philanthropic and corporate leaders to recognize and celebrate the achievements of individuals and corporations who have exhibited outstanding leadership in the visual and performing arts, arts education, advocacy, and philanthropy; THE BCA TEN: Best Companies Supporting the Arts in America is an annual gala that recognizes the corporate leaders who are dedicated to increasing partnerships between the private sector and the arts; National Arts and Humanities Month is a coast-to-coast collective celebration of culture in America. Coordinated by Americans for the Arts, it has become the largest annual celebration of the arts and humanities in the nation. From arts center open houses to mayoral proclamations to banners and newspaper articles, over 10,000 communities across the United States make sure their citizens pay attention to the cultural gems surrounding them.

Category

None

Population(s) Served

General Public/Unspecified

None

None

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    At Americans for the Arts our goal is to ensure that the arts are integrated into the fabric of every American community. To ensure that every child enjoys the lifelong benefits of an education rich in the arts, we are spearheading the coalition to keep the arts as a core subject in the federal Elementary and Secondary School Act as well as part of every state's academic standards. We are working with community leaders and elected officials to show how the arts are economic engines — driving local economies, tourism, and neighborhood revitalization. Lastly, we are working with the military to investigate how the arts promote physical and psychological healing for our service members, their families, and their caregivers.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    At Americans for the Arts, we combine national leadership with local tools, connecting the right people with the right information at the right time. When the U.S. Conference for Mayors released its 10-point plan to improve America's communities, thanks to our 20-year partnership, the arts were number 9. We educate and empower individuals to be effective advocates. When public broadcasting was facing a $100 million cut, we mobilized 10,000 people, and Congress removed the threat within 24 hours. We forge strong, lasting partnerships with national organizations and key members of Congress. Our research-based tools for arts and community leaders provide hard numbers that make a powerful case for the arts and arts education. When we speak, decision makers listen.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    As an organization, Americans for the Arts is uniquely positioned to influence policy by leveraging research to produce action. Through our strategic partnerships, we build influence across the political spectrum. We employ a cooperative, bipartisan approach ensuring access to the arts for all and garnering public support for the arts. We cultivate peer-to-peer dialogue and exchange of ideas, identifying best practice models, breaking them down, and teaching others how to adapt them in their own communities. We champion a research-based understanding of the benefit of the arts and pair it with anecdotal evidence to make a compelling case for why the arts matter.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    At Americans for the Arts, success means thriving arts organizations in local communities, arts-friendly policies at all levels of government, and a populace that values the arts not just in and of themselves, but as powerful partners and instruments for social change. We build a research-based understanding of how the arts benefit social, educational, and economic development issues — yielding the knowledge and tools arts professionals, government officials, and community and business leaders need to support and create effective programs for their own communities. We mobilize a network of national leaders and 220,000 grassroots activists to speak up about why the arts are important to them. After 50 years, the number of arts organizations has grown ten-fold and every state has its own arts agency.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Americans for the Arts played a pivotal role in the creation of the National Endowment for the Arts and continues to champion its support, ensuring the arts are available in communities across America regardless of size. Through our grassroots advocacy efforts, we helped secure $50 million for people who work in the arts as part of the Jobs Recovery Act — 85,000 voices made the case that an investment in arts jobs is an investment in our economy. Our Arts & Economic Prosperity study is the national research model for tracking the economic impact of the arts and we brought national visibility to the benefits of the arts and arts education through 2 award-winning PSA Campaigns in partnership with the Ad Council.

    Everything that we do at Americans for the Arts is to increase the availability of the arts and arts education for every American. Increased resources would enable us to expand our reach even further. We could bring Voter Voice, our technology platform that links E-Advocacy Centers at the federal, state, and local levels, to every community in the country. We would expand our work to train the next generation of arts leaders through programs like Arts U, a 21st century training academy that mixes virtual and in-person opportunities and leverages technology to train current and future arts leaders. We would bring back our popular “The Arts. Ask for More." PSA Campaign, deepening its reach while also working to create and enhance public/private partnership models to support the arts in our country.
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

To achieve our goals, we partner with local, state, and national arts organizations; government agencies; business leaders; individual philanthropists; educators; and funders throughout the country.

Social Media

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External Reviews

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

AMERICANS FOR THE ARTS INC
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

AMERICANS FOR THE ARTS INC

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2014, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

President and CEO

Mr. Robert Lynch

BIO

Robert L. Lynch is the president and CEO of Americans for the Arts where he has worked since its inception in 1996. He was executive director of the National Assembly of Local Arts Agencies for 12 years, and managed the successful merger of that organization with the American Council for the Arts to form Americans for the Arts. In his 30th year of work for the arts industry, Bob is motivated by his personal mission to empower communities and leaders to advance arts and arts appreciation in society. He has presented more than 1,000 speeches and workshops in 49 states and 8 countries, for audiences ranging from Native American tribal gatherings to the U.S. Armed Forces in Europe to the President of the United States. Lynch currently serves on the boards of the Independent Sector, the Arts Extension Institute, and the University of Massachusetts-Amherst College of Humanities and Fine Arts Dean's Council. He has recently been reappointed to another term on the U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board, by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce. In August 2012 and 2013, he was selected as one of the most influential executives in the nonprofit sector for the NonProfit Times Power & Influence Top 50, and in January 2014 he was awarded the Sidney R. Yates Award for Outstanding Advocacy on Behalf of the Performing Arts. He earned a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Massachusetts - Amherst. Lynch plays the piano, mandolin, and guitar, and lives in Washington, D.C.

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Abel Lopez

Associate Producing Director, GALA Hispanic Theatre

Term: Jan 2013 -

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization

Yes

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

No

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?