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Fresh Strategy Assessement for Maryland Arts

Fresh Strategy Assessement for Maryland Arts


State Arts Council plans for next five years

February 04, 2013Press Release

The Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) today announced that Imagine Maryland, its five-year (2009-1013) strategic plan, will be assessed and updated by Dreeszen & Associates, a consulting firm that specializes in strategic and cultural planning and has assisted more than 60 nonprofit cultural organizations and public agencies—including nine state arts agencies—develop strategic plans.

In making the announcement, Barbara Bershon, MSAC Chair, said “This important process will allow us to gauge the success of the past five years and building on that foundation, identify opportunities to broaden the cultural and economic impact of the arts in years to come.”

Launched in April 2009, Imagine Maryland invited artists and educators, students and retirees, business leaders and community activists to help imagine a state where the arts thrive and every person can fully participate in the arts. Dozens of meetings, surveys and interviews found that the arts are essential to maintaining and strengthening the connections between citizens and communities, to enhancing education and workforce preparedness and to the economic vitality and livability of Maryland communities.

Maintaining a strong statewide art infrastructure through support for Maryland arts organizations, access to quality arts education and arts experiences, and opportunities for artists to live and work were universal goals of MSAC stakeholders and the Maryland public, as were increasing communication, collaboration and coordination despite the challenges of the economic downturn that swept the country in 2008.

Dozens of strides toward these goals have been made since the plan’s inception, including the designation of two additional Arts & Entertainment Districts (Bel Air and Bromo Tower) where artists , arts organizations and other creative enterprises receive tax incentives, a 26% increase in the number of children attending arts events in FY2011, the creation of the annual Maryland Folklife Festival, a celebration of Maryland’s traditional arts and the completion of the 9/11 Memorial of Maryland, a public art project steered by the Maryland Public Art Commission.

Updates to the strategic plan will measure advances toward its original goals and prioritize remaining opportunities. Bill Mandicott, a current member of the MSAC who was council chair during the development of Imagine Maryland brings continuity to the process as Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee.

An agency of the Maryland Department of Business & Economic Development, Division of Tourism, Film and the Arts, the MSAC is dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. In FY 2011, Maryland State Arts Council grantees generated $1 billion in economic activity and supported more than 11,000 jobs and $37.8 million in state and local tax revenue. Source: Economic Impact of the Arts in Maryland: FY2011.