State invests $5 million in its Arts and Culture Programs

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A recent announcement by the state was made that seeks to invest $5 million to its Arts and Culture programs. Governor Doug Ducey’s signing of a bipartisan budget included a one-time allocation of the investment to the Arizona Commission on the Arts.

Jacky Alling, Interim Executive Director of the Arizona Commission on the Arts, and Patrick McWhortor, CEO of Arizona Citizens for the Arts, joins us to discuss the announcement.

Arizona Citizens for the Arts deals with creative capacity grants that helps local businesses stay open. “It supports all kinds of programs that reaches different people in different ways,” McWhortor said.

McWhortor said he was recently visiting an organization and that was providing a dance program for people with early stages of Parkinson’s. “Sometimes people think of the arts as something you visit on the weekend, and that’s great, but there are a lot of programs that are helping people in need,” he said.

“We think about taking pride in our community, McWhortor said. That pride comes from what the Arizona Citizens for the Arts offers in art and culture, he added. Economic development is a local issue. “Cities and towns in Arizona really thrive off of arts and culture in their communities.”

Alling said a big part of the mandate is getting programs all across Arizona, not just in Maricopa County. “We serve the entire state and want to reflect the communities that we serve,” Alling said. “We will be reaching out to the new administration and the boards and commissions office and try to develop a strong relationship.”

“Maricopa County is great, but it doesn’t reflect the entire state,” she said.

Jacky Alling, Interim Executive Director of the Arizona Commission on the Arts & Patrick McWhortor, CEO of Arizona Citizens for the Arts

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