Arts & Cultural Alliance of St. Lucie, Inc.In 2009, faced with a $56 million budget gap, the Board of County Commissioners chose to transition the County arts and cultural affairs programs to a new non-profit organization. The major advantage of this approach is the ability of the non-profit to leverage limited County funding through fundraising events, memberships, program sponsorships, donations, etc. On October 21, 2009, the Arts and Cultural Alliance of St. Lucie, Inc. (the Alliance) was officially incorporated. The Alliance is the designated local arts agency for St. Lucie County. As an important step in laying a firm foundation for the new organization, the BOCC approved funding in the amount of $55,000 from the former County Cultural Affairs Division for the Alliance. Of this funding, $50,000 was designated to be used to conduct a community-wide survey on arts and culture in St. Lucie County and to develop of a strategic plan for the Alliance based on the results of the survey as well as external research on best practices of other arts agencies and funding for arts and culture in general.
Please see the attached the PowerPoint presentation under the Quick Links section that was presented to the BOCC by Charlotte Pelton & Associates, the firm selected by the Alliance through a competitive process to conduct the survey and research and to work with the Alliance on the development of a strategic plan. The presentation is a summary of the results of the community survey as well as the external research that was conducted by the firm. The detailed information (consisting of 108 slides) was presented to the Alliance Board of Directors at a retreat and the strategic plan was developed in accordance with the results.
History of Organization
- Established in 2009 as a non-profit corporation under the State of Florida.
- Designated as the Local Arts Agency by the St. Lucie County Board of County Commissioners (official state designation)
- Organized to provide leadership, advocacy and fundraising for arts and culture in the St. Lucie community.
Benefits of Supporting the Alliance
- Ability to conduct fundraising activities.
- Greater return on investment of County funding, leveraging its support to generate additional support from the business and philanthropic community.
- With County support for administrative costs, fundraising can focus on programs and services.
- Flexibility in organizational structure, marketing and program delivery.
The Arts & Cultural Alliance of St. Lucie, Inc. established 5 Major Goals which were accepted by the BOCC on March 22, 2011
The Goals and Objectives are based on the community survey, focus groups, external research and local arts agency survey.
1 - Champion Arts and Culture in St. Lucie County
- Educate the community about the broader importance of arts and culture to our community, including economic development, quality of life, education, at-risk youth, healthcare and other societal issues.
- Become recognized as the marketing umbrella for arts and cultural activities throughout St. Lucie County.
- Ensure that all advocates are “on the same page” in terms of messaging and that the arts and cultural community works collaboratively to strengthen the impact and delivery of that message.
2 - Ignite – Invite – Excite
- Provide public access to comprehensive information about arts and cultural activities, events and artists in a format that is user-friendly, interesting and always current.
- Excite and encourage participation in arts and cultural activities and events among residents and tourists of all ages.
- Expand and increase young audiences for art and culture through use of social networks and other new technologies.
3 - Nurture our Artistic and Cultural Community
- Facilitate collaboration between organizations, artists and educators.
- Provide artists and cultural organizations opportunities for professional development and technical assistance that enable them to operate more effectively and efficiently.
- Provide opportunities for artists to showcase their work and increase their visibility.
4 - Inspiration x Imagination = Education²
- Facilitate and encourage arts in education programs which positively impact student educational and social outcomes.
- Encourage and facilitate collaboration between educators, artists, and organizations to enhance curriculum.
- Provide opportunities for students to participate in the arts both in the classroom and outside it.
5 - Art: The Best Investment for our Future
- Become a highly effective organization through best practices in agency operations and programs and services.
- Focus fundraising and grant writing on community priorities.
- Leverage funds from the public and private sector to increase the return on the investment.
- Fund programs and services that deliver a strong return on investment to the community, educationally, socially and artistically.
- Ensure transparency in all financial matters.
On March 22, 2011, the BOCC also approved funding in the amount of $342,537 from Art in Public Places funding to begin implementation of the strategic plan, including hiring an executive director. The Alliance will also be applying for a state grant of up to $40,000.
For more information on the Arts & Cultural Alliance of St. Lucie, Inc., visit: http://www.artsinstlucie.org.