Racial Equity in Arts Philanthropy Preconference: Every Child, Every Adult
Saturday, October 28, 8am-4pm
Cadillac B | Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center
Grantmakers in the Arts debuts its new workshop on racial equity in arts philanthropy during this day-long preconference. The Center for Social Inclusion (New York, NY) will provide an overview of the systems that reflect our history and drive many of our current portfolios. Grantmakers in the Arts’ team of arts philanthropists will lead a discussion of how our grantmaking can impact change for African, Latino/a, Asian, Arab and Native American (ALAANA) artists and communities, signifying a new beginning of equitable philanthropy in the nonprofit arts sector.
7:00 amBreakfast available in hotel — Marquette (Level 5)
8:00 amWelcome & Introductions — Eddie Torres, GIA president & CEO
8:15 amSystemic Racism and Philanthropy — Individual and Institutional
Presented by Nayantara Sen and Rachael DeCruz
Presentation on systemic racism — history, common language, definitions, concepts
1:00 pmSharing a Program
Presented by Randy Engstrom, Seattle Office of Arts & Culture
1:30 pmFrom Theory to Action
Facilitated by Maurine Knighton, Vickie Benson, and Lulani Arquette
Identifying barriers and seeking solutions in your institution and community to funding equity and anti-racism work
3:15 pmSteps Towards Portfolio Change
Key Questions for Portfolio Change
4:15 pmWrap Up — This is just the beginning
Keep in Mind
Lulani Arquette is president and CEO of the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, a national charity dedicated to promoting the revitalization, appreciation, and perpetuation of Native arts and cultures through philanthropy. Under her leadership, the new foundation opened its doors and launched a grantmaking program supporting individual artists and Native Alaskan, American Indian, and Native Hawaiian arts and culture organizations. She is a strong advocate of arts and culture, Native selfdetermination, business and economic development, as well as social justice. Her innovative leadership for nonprofits and the corporate sector for over 20 years has resulted in unique collaborations enriched by the strengths of racial and ethnic diversity. Lulani serves on the Grantmakers in the Arts board of directors. She has a graduate degree in political science and a BA in drama and theatre from the University of Hawai`i.
Vickie Benson is arts program director for The McKnight Foundation. Before coming to McKnight in 2007, she was vice president of the Jerome Foundation in St. Paul, program director at Chamber Music America in New York City, and senior program specialist at the National Endowment for the Arts in Washington, DC. She is currently a member of the operations committee for ArtPlace, a grantmaking collaboration of 14 national and regional foundations focused on Creative Placemaking. She holds a BA in arts administration from St. Paul’s Metropolitan State University, and an M.A. in nonprofit management from the Hamline University Graduate School of Management. She studied music at the University of Minnesota as an undergrad. An avid advocate for artists, Benson has a background as a folk singer and guitar player.
Rachael DeCruz is the vice president of policy at the new Race Forward. The new Race Forward is the union of two leading racial justice non-profit organizations: Race Forward and Center for Social Inclusion (CSI). Previously, she was the racial equity project manager and Government Alliance on Race and Equity (GARE) network manager at CSI. In this capacity, she managed the Puget Sound Cohort on Equity, Environment, and Infrastructure and the GARE Membership Network. Rachael has extensive experience in both the nonprofit sector and philanthropy, and is deeply committed to racial justice. She comes to this position with a background in communications, multiracial coalition building, and organizing. Prior to joining CSI, Rachael was the communications manager at Pride Foundation — a community foundation focused on advancing LGBTQ equality in the Northwest. She has been a member of the executive committee of the Seattle King County NAACP for nearly five years.
Randy Engstrom is the director of the Office of Arts & Culture for the City of Seattle. Previously, he owned and operated Reflex Strategies, a cultural and community based consulting business. He currently serves on the Grantmakers in the Arts board of directors. Randy was chair of the Seattle Arts Commission in 2011 after serving two years as vice-chair, and was chair of the facilities and economic development committee from 2006 to 2010. He has served as the founding director of the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, a multimedia/multidisciplinary community space that offers youth and community members access to arts, technology, and cultural resources. Prior to Youngstown, Randy spent three years as the founding CEO of Static Factory Media, an artist development organization that owned and operated a record label, bar/performance venue, graphic design house, recording studio, and web development business. In 2009 Randy received the Emerging Leader Award from Americans for the Arts and was one of Puget Sound Business Journal’s 40 Under 40. He is a graduate of the Evergreen State College in Olympia, and he received his Executive Masters in Public Administration at the University of Washington’s Evans School of Public Affairs.
Maurine Knighton is the program director for the arts at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, where she directs a grantmaking program focused on sustaining and building the vitality and vibrancy of American contemporary jazz, dance, and theater. She currently serves on the Grantmakers in the Arts board of director as chair of the racial equity in arts philanthropy committee. Previously, she was senior vice president for grantmaking at The Nathan Cummings Foundation, a national foundation pursuing social and economic justice. There, she helped craft NCF’s theory of change, which elevates the power of arts and culture to achieve social and economic justice. Maurine’s career in philanthropy also includes the role of senior vice president for program and nonprofit investment at the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, where she was responsible for directing arts and culture grantmaking in a community where the high concentration of culturally specific arts organizations make the industry a key economic driver.
Nayantara Sen is an activist, network builder, arts advocate, and social and racial justice educator and trainer. She is the culture and content program manager and senior trainer at Race Forward: The Center for Racial Justice Innovation. At Race Forward, she produces curricula, facilitates racial justice workshops to support movement organizations and non-profits nationally, and develops cultural and narrative strategies for racial equity. She is the program designer and manager of the Racial Equity in the Arts Innovation Lab in New York City, which is equipping 60 arts and cultural organizations with racial equity practices and prototypes. Nayantara is also the co-principal of Art/Work Practice, LLC, a bicoastal consulting firm that works at the intersections of arts, culture, narrative and organizational change in order to build equity across all people’s work. She is currently an M.A candidate at Gallatin, NYU in Postcolonial Literature, Social Movements and Creative Fiction Writing.
- Lulani Arquette, Native Arts and Cultures Foundation
- Vickie Benson, The McKnight Foundation
- Denise Brown, Leeway Foundation
- Randy Engstrom, Seattle Office of Arts and Culture
- Maurine Knighton, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation
- Justin Laing, Hillombo, LLC
- Angelique Power, The Field Foundation
- Kerry McCarthy, New York Community Trust