EVENT: 2019 Otis Report on the Creative Economy

February 1, 2019 10am – 1pm
Los Angeles, CA



This year marks the eleventh annual Otis Report on the Creative Economy, an invaluable tool commissioned by Otis College of Art and Design and authored in 2019 by Beacon Economics. The program will include a presentation of findings by Beacon’s Executive Director of Research Robert Kleinhenz, Ph.D., who authored several prior editions in his previous role as chief economist of the Kyser Center for Economic Research at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation.

The keynote speaker is Bettina Korek, executive director of Frieze Los Angeles and founder of ForYourArt.

The event will also be live-streamed on Otis College’s Facebook page.

The report will be available for download online at otis.edu/otis-report-creative-economy on February 1, 2019 at 10am. Follow updates on social media using #OtisReport.

Please RSVP above.
or Livestream HERE


Date and Location: 
February 1, 2019 10am – 1pm
Mark Taper Auditorium
Richard J. Riordan Central Library
650 W. 5th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90071

9:30 a.m. Check-In
10:00 a.m. Program Start
11:30 a.m. Networking Reception

524 South Flower Street Garage, Parking Info.


Funding for the 2019 Otis Report on the Creative Economy has been provided by the California Arts Council; Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, Second District; Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority; City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs; Endeavour; City National Bank; and Moss Adams. Media partners include Californians for the Arts, Arts for L.A., and Arts Orange County.

Otis Report Sponsors.png



January News – Stand Up for the Arts


Dear Arts Advocates,
Welcome to 2019! Good news coming already from Sacramento with the release of Governor Newsom’s first budget but our work here is still not done. Although the proposed funding increases the permanent allocation by $10 million, it effectively replaces the $8.8 million one time put into the May revise by Governor Brown. We are grateful for Governor Newsom’s pro active call to increase funding but overall we are still spending less than $1.00 per person on the arts in California.
Join us in our movement to advance arts, culture and creativity today. Now is the time to move from being an arts supporter to being an arts activist!
Julie Baker Sig
Julie Baker
Executive Director, CAA/CFTA
victoria_s signature1
Victoria L. Hamilton
President of CAA/CFTA

news from the field


California Arts Council welcomes newest council member Jodie Evans who was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown on January 3, 2019. Evans has been a peace, environmental, women’s rights and social justice activist for over forty-five years. She is the co-founder of CODEPINK that works to stop US Military interventions overseas, promotes diplomatic solutions and Peace. She served in the administration of Governor Jerry Brown and ran his presidential campaigns. Esteemed Council member Louise McGuinness was also reappointed by Brown to serve an additional four-year term.

Phoebe Beasley, Christopher Coppola, Steven Oliver, and Rosalind Wyman completed their appointed terms on January 1.

Who do you want to see on the California Arts Council?
Perhaps some rural representation?
Let your voice be heard or apply here!


The search continues for arts and culture field experts to serve as part of a California Arts Council peer-review panel for the 2018-19 grant season. For the first time this year, panelists will receive an honorarium for their service in Sacramento. Young professionals and experienced cultural workers, artists, and arts policy makers are encouraged to apply by January 15. Complete details can be found HERE.


From Grantmakers in the Arts: CREATIVE PLACEMAKING:

Rethinking Neighborhood Change and Tracking Progress 

creative placemakingA white paper released by Kresge Foundation explores creative placemaking initiatives and the assessment of community development strategies. The latest white paper on creative placemaking, penned by Maria Rosario Jackson, PH.D, makes the case on how the field could benefit from a more nuanced understanding of the roots of urban inequality, and improved ways of tracking change in communities.      READ MORE


Government Shutdown and the Arts

gov shutdown mmuseum

A sign posted outside the National Zoo earlier this month declares its closure, along with the closure of all Smithsonian museums. They were all on the wish list for Jill Rorem, whose family plans were undone by the shutdown. But she’s not alone: The shutdown’s ramifications on the arts have been felt far beyond the Beltway. Carolyn Kaster/AP

As Shutdown Crawls On, Artists And Nonprofits Fear For Their ‘Fragile Industry’

“It’s a fragile industry. It’s not a rich, money-making thing,” Robert Lynch, head of Americans for the Arts, says of the landscape of arts workers and organizations. “So any little crack — whether it is the elimination of money from the National Endowment for the Arts or the slowing of it down, like a shutdown does — it potentially affects people and their planning and their ability to attract other funders, all of that kind of thing.
It’s a ripple effect.”  *Source- NPR  READ MORE


Artist proposes solution to Bay Area housing crisis

Berkeley artist and activist Alfred Twu has come up with a novel idea that would not only recycle old BART cars, it would add options to the tight Bay Area housing market. READ MORE

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


T_Action Items Red

  • Thank Governor Newsom for proposing $10 million in permanent funding for the California Arts Council. Tag him in your social media posts, send a letter, let the administration know you care and want to see funding for the arts continue to increase.
  • Volunteer to help CFTA with the current session and Arts, Culture and Creativity Day and month of activities.
  • The California State Legislature and United States Congress convene.
    Learn about your representatives:
    What district are you in?
    • Where is the nearest local office
    • What are the relevant phone and fax numbers and e-mail addresses? 

    Helpful Contacts
    Find out who represents you here:

    California State Capitol Switchboard
    (916) 322-9900 | www.leginfo.ca.gov
    U.S. House of Representatives Switchboard
    (202) 225-3121 | www.house.gov

    California State Capitol Switchboard
    (916) 322-9900 | www.leginfo.ca.gov


T_Legislative_Gray+Lt+Blue2Besides working to increase permanent funding for the arts, here is some of the proposed legislation that may have implications for our field:

AB 5 Worker status: independent Contractors
California Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) has introduced legislation intended to strengthen employee rights and define the role of an independent contractor.
The bill (A.B. 5), would add to state law the “ABC test” regarding independent contractors. The test was adopted unanimously by California’s Supreme Court in the case of Dynamex Operations West, Inc. v. Superior Court of Los Angeles (2018) 4 Cal.5th 903 (Dynamex) in an April decision.

The court ruled in favor of workers when Dynamex, a package and documents delivery company, converted all of its drivers to independent contractors to save money.

In its decision, the court sided with the drivers and established the three part “A-B-C” test, which requires workers to be classified as independent contractors if:

A) The worker is “free from control and direction” of the employer as it relates to performance of the work.
B) The work is performed “outside the usual course” of the hiring entity’s business.
C) The worker engages in an independently established trade, occupation or business of the same nature as the work performed for the hiring entity.

It’s time to review who you have classified as an independent contractor vs an employee based against the above criteria. If you think this could have a significant impact for your organization, please let us know. membership@californiansforthearts.org 

If you have questions or concerns, an excellent resource is California Lawyers for the Arts.


White+Gray5Arts Day 2015

  • Do you believe arts being accessible for every Californian is imperative?
  • Do you feel California should be the leading creative state?
  • Do you think arts and artists can play a vital role in solving some of California’s greatest challenges?
  • Do you want to see funding to match these goals?

Then it is time to support Californians for the Arts,
your statewide arts advocacy organization.

As we gear up to actively work with a new administration to publicly fund the arts at historic levels and build our delegate programs with trainings across the state, your support for our organization is needed now more than ever. Please join online today!


T_Upcoming Events_Blk Lavender


screen shot 2019-01-15 at 6.05.57 pm

Registration Deadline: Feb 11 at 3pm

screen shot 2019-01-15 at 6.09.15 pm

$35, free to GIA Members.
screen shot 2019-01-15 at 6.10.56 pm copy


Screen Shot 2019-01-15 at 6.21.26 PM.pngRegister online to participate or download the pdf.


Follow us on Facebook for up to the minute breaking news and some humor to lighten your day!


Governor Newsom releases his first budget which includes a $10 million permanent increase in funding for the arts

For Immediate Release January 10, 2019


California Sate Capitol Building, Sacramento

Californians for the Arts (CFTA), the statewide arts advocacy organization, is pleased to announce that Governor Newsom’s proposed 2019-20 budget includes an increase in state funding for the arts from $16 million in permanent funding from the general fund budget to $26,083,000. “We are thrilled Governor Newsom has taken the proactive step to increase permanent funding for the arts in California. California is the 5th largest economy in the world with the creative economy totaling $407.1 billion in 2017*, but our state funding for the arts and arts education has fallen short in allowing for equitable access to the arts. Governor Brown in his final May revise of the budget had given a one time increase of $8.8 million. Governor Newsom’s $10 million proposal for permanent funding represents an overall funding increase of $1.2 million but as it is permanent it allows the State Arts Agency to be more stable with ongoing grants and programs. We are grateful to Governor Newsom for his vision and support of the impact the arts sector makes in California,” says CFTA Executive Director Julie Baker.

gov newsom budget

California Gov. Gavin Newsom presents his first state budget during a news conference, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019, in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

The arts are not only an impressive and important agent for economic development, the arts impact social issues including mental health, corrections, housing, veterans, transportation and education. Studies show that students with an arts rich education have better grade point average, score better on standardized tests in reading and math and have lower dropout rates. Especially in a state as diverse as California, the arts serve to give voice to our many communities, spark individual creativity, foster empathy and understanding, spur civic engagement and serve as a continual source of personal enrichment, inspiration and growth.

After years of advocacy, CFTA’s efforts have succeeded in increasing appropriations exponentially, from the $1 million allocated in 2004 to nearly $25 million for fiscal 2018. If the budget passes with this proposed increase, more grant programs would be available to offer support to public access to the arts, arts in schools and the state’s cultural infrastructure. California is ranked 26th in the nation for arts funding, on a per capita basis. With this increase California still falls behind other leading creative states such as New York which ranks 6th at $2.05 in spending per capita and Massachusetts with $2.33. “As arts advocates, this is exciting news coming out of Sacramento,” says Baker, “but our work is not done. We will still advocate for increased permanent funding for the arts so we are on par with other leading creative states as we know the arts and creative sector are invaluable to an enlightened, vital and functioning society. The creative sector has a lot to offer and should be recognized for its impact and worth. We look forward to working with the new administration to amplify California’s profile as the leading state of creativity and to illustrate how the creative sector is transformative, solution oriented and effective.”

In April, Californians for the Arts will launch Arts, Culture and Creativity Month, a series of actions throughout the state to illustrate the impact of the arts in California.

* Source, Otis Report on the Creative Economy

December Newsletter

Left to Right Julie Baker, CFTA Executive Director, Assemblymember Kansen Chu, Ron Muriera, CFTA Vice-President, Victoria Hamilton, President.

Good morning from Sacramento where we are attending the California Arts Council convening of State Local Partners and Statewide Regional Networks.

On Friday, we attended the California Arts Council meeting for public comments in the morning and then had a lively and engaging meeting with arts thought leaders discussing the landscape for arts advocacy in California, the opportunities we have with a new administration to re-state our case for the impact the creative sector has on California and the need to scale our organization to meet this opportunity. We were delighted that Assemblymember Kansen Chu, a legislative leader for the arts and the Chair of the Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism, & Internet Media Committee and Co-Chair – California Joint Committee on the Arts was able to join us as well.

Assemblymember Kansen Chu at a CFTA meeting in San Jose.

Californians for the Arts (CFTA) and California Arts Advocates (CAA) are your state arts advocacy organizations. CFTA is our non-profit organization and a statewide regional network under the California Arts Council. CFTA will be leading trainings across the state as we build towards Arts, Culture and Creativity Month in April. CAA is our 501 (c) 4 organization and our primary activity is to lobby the Legislature to increase permanent funding for the Arts and to protect and support legislation that is friendly towards the creative sector.



Today we are excited to launch our new website for Californians for the Arts. Stay tuned as we continue to add content including an Advocacy toolkit.

We are also pleased that you can now make your membership donations online at both websites. Please see our new membership program for CFTA here and join today. Together we can make California the leading state of Creativity and build a sustainable and vibrant state using creativity as the driver for social change and wellness.

California is celebrating a new and historic legislature with the largest group of Democrats sworn in, in modern California history. California is also learning how to live with the effects of climate change as we saw devastating fires rage through our State in late November.

PARADISE, CA – NOVEMBER 08: Homes burn on Neal Road in Paradise, Calif., as a wildfire destroys neighborhoods, Thursday, November 8, 2018. Photo by Karl Mondon.

In this newsletter, we interview Debra Lucero, CFTA/CAA Board Member, Arts Leader and incoming Butte County Supervisor on the role the Arts sector plays in disaster recovery. As arts advocates, we see the critical role artists and culture workers play in solving social issues. As California faces growing challenges for housing and affordability, homelessness, climate change, transportation, criminal justice, immigration, healthcare, education, gun safety, prison reform and more, what role can and should the arts sector play in working towards building a better California? We want to hear your stories of success and your ideas for creative results based actions. Share your stories on our Facebook page or email them to membership@californiansforthearts.org.

We hope the holidays bring everyone a chance to rest and spend time with loved ones. We know the work we all do in the creative sector is inspiring but it is also hard work. We celebrate you and your accomplishments and we thank you for your support.

Julie Baker
Executive Director, CAA/CFTA

Victoria L. Hamilton
President of CAA/CFTA



California Lawmakers swear in for new 2 year session. Image Courtesy of the Herald Dispatch.

California’s Legislative Session began on Monday, December 3rd. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon was chosen to lead for another term by his colleagues and Senators again chose Democrat Toni Atkins of San Diego as the president pro tempore. There are 80 assemblymembers and 40 senators. 17 lawmakers are taking their seats for the first time, nine in the Senate and eight in the Assembly.

Democrats hold 60 Assembly seats and 29 Senate seats. Rendon highlighted the Assembly’s diverse group of representatives, which includes 23 women. In the Senate, Democratic Sen. Melissa Hurtado is the state’s youngest female senator ever at age 30. Assemblywoman Blanca Rubio and Sen. Susan Rubio are the first sisters to serve together in the Legislature.

According to the Los Angeles Times, it’s the largest group of Democrats sworn in in modern California history. Based on reporting from the Associated Press.


  • Update your data base with the names of newly elected officials.
  • Volunteer to help CFTA to prepare for the legislative session and Arts, Culture and Creativity actions and day at the Capitol on April 24.
  • Add your legislators to your holiday card list and let them know how important the arts, culture and creativity are to a healthy and vibrant California.
  • Fill out this easy California Priorities Survey and let Governor Newsom know directly how important the arts are to California.

Not sure who your representative is? CLICK HERE


Join CFTA or CAA or give a year end gift appeal.

  • Do you believe arts being accessible for every Californian is imperative?
  • Do you feel California should be the leading creative state?
  • Do you think arts and artists can play a vital role in solving some of California’s greatest challenges?
  • Do you want to see funding to match these goals?

Then it is time to support Californians for the Arts,
your statewide arts advocacy organization.

As we gear up to actively work with a new administration to publicly fund the arts at historic levels and build our delegate programs with trainings across the state, your support for our organization is needed now more than ever. Please join online today!


Click HERE for your full guide to upcoming events.


Starting in 2019, April will officially be Arts, Culture, & Creativity Month in the state of CA!

Throughout the year, Californians for the Arts conducts advocacy trainings across the state, and briefings for elected officials.
April 24, 2019
Arts, Culture and Creativity Advocacy DaySacramento, CA
Register online to participate or download the pdf.

Debra Cucero, CAA / CFTA Board Member, Executive Director of Shasta Country Arts Council, Redding, and Supervisor of Butte County District 2.

Q: Over the last 2 years you’ve seen the devastation of wildfires in your county with most recently the CampFire in the town of Paradise. As an incoming Supervisor and Arts Leader, what role do you feel arts play in disaster relief?

DL: The most recent Camp Fire has been the most destructive in California state history. The magnitude of this is something we’re all trying to get our heads around. We’re grappling with the fact an entire town of 27,000 people is literally gone and other nearby places like Concow, Magalia, and Butte Creek Canyon nearly destroyed. In fact, the fire killed 88 people and another 25 are missing. It destroyed nearly 14,000 single-family residences, nearly 300 multi-residence dwellings, 528 commercial buildings and over 4,000 other minor structures. An estimated 564 more were damaged. Eight of nine schools were damaged or destroyed. The easier way to understand what happened in Paradise is how many buildings were left standing: 1,786 structures survived.

But beyond this destruction is the mental anguish experienced by first responders, nurses, doctors, teachers and everyday citizens who fled The Ridge amidst towering flames, a sky as black as midnight and who, unfortunately, witnessed burned out vehicles and mayhem – scenes of war against our normally tranquil and beautiful environment. Many nearly died themselves.

This is where the healing properties of creating art can begin. Whether it is through music or painting or storytelling or sculpting or stringing beads. Art therapy is rooted in the idea that creative expression can foster healing and mental well-being. It helps tell difficult stories of survival. It helps us sort through the complex emotions of trauma and most importantly, it helps us heal.

A photograph by Debra Lucero of Honey Run Covered Bridge after the fire damaged the bridge, taken Sunday, November 10th.

Q: Are there examples of how artists have helped in disaster recovery in your community?

DL: In Redding, where the Carr Fire ravaged that community this summer, Art from the Ashes immediately sprung up and began to “rescue” items from burned out homes, farms, and businesses. These are being housed in a facility that will be open to artists from all over the Western U.S. to create art from these strangely beautiful remnants of peoples’ material lives. We are putting out a Call to Artists to assist in this process which will culminate in a gallery show and monies raised will go to those who lost their homes and businesses.

Additionally, the first thing I’ve noticed in these last two fires is the heart-felt desire to DO SOMETHING for those who lost nearly everything except their life. This desperate response comes from the artistic community who give of their talents to hold concerts and workshops and more to raise money for victims. One artist I know painted 100 canvases and a mere $10 a piece to raise $1,000 for local artists who lost their art supplies.

A painting of HA painting of Honey Run Covered Bridge in Butte Creek Canyon by local artist Janet Lombardi Blixt. Lombardi is raising funds by selling prints of the above painting. Funds go to support victims of the Camp Fire. You can purchase prints HERE.

Q: There is a concept being developed of Artists as Second Responders. Do you think this is an accurate depiction?

DL: I hadn’t heard of this exact phrase but I find it appropriate. Unfortunately, I think we are far away from Artists being seen as “Second Responders.” There is such focus (rightfully so) on the first responders who risk their lives saving all of us. But when the dust settles and the trauma begins to settle in; that’s when art therapists and artists and musicians come together to provide relief – the only kind they know how to bring – through the beauty of their talents. It may be a song or a poem or a beautiful image of what was – like an artist who had painted the Covered Bridge in Butte Creek Canyon (now completely destroyed) and is now using the painting to raise funds for victims.

Q: In your experience, what legislation or public funding is needed for artists and arts organizations who experience a disaster such as wildfire?

DL: Professional artists can seek relief through the Small Business Administration which offers low-interest loans. Businesses of any size and private, nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets. These loans cover losses that are not fully covered by insurance or other recoveries.

However, I do think we need to begin a more collaborative, statewide approach to disasters and the effect on local artists and our artistic community. The fabric of our existence is already stretch so thin. Perhaps there could be a special disaster relief program through the California Arts Council to assist with general operating grants to help organizations adversely affected by disaster? CERF, which bills itself as THE ARTISTS SAFETY NET is one national organization that has been on the frontlines of disasters from earthquakes, wildfires, hurricanes, floods and tornadoes. We need more safety nets for our artistic community.

Perhaps in California, it’s time to recognize the collective creative genius represented here. Perhaps it’s time to lobby our legislators about the hundreds of artists who have lost entire collections of work, studios and more. Perhaps it’s time to acknowledge the underlying creative nature of our state and begin to protect it – just like we protect our natural treasures.

November News

unnamed (2)

Members of the board of California Arts Advocates/Californians for the Arts and Executive Director Julie Baker met in Sacramento for a retreat on October 30th, 2018.


Message from ED and Board

Dear Arts Advocacy Colleagues,

It’s a good day to celebrate after an historic election with many firsts across the nation and some victories in our state of California including the passage of Proposition E in San Francisco. We welcome Governor elect Newsom and look forward to working with his team to advance the arts in California and thank Governor Brown for his recognition of the value the arts, culture and creativity bring to California.

In fact, that is what this small but mighty all volunteer (until last month!) led organization has been doing since 1996. Building the case for support for the arts at the State and Federal level. Walking the halls of the Capitol during the lean years when arts funding was at historic lows of $1 million per year to this last budget cycle where we saw close to $26 million in total funding for the arts in California and over $21 million in grants from the California Arts Council. We are proud of our work here at California Arts Advocates and are grateful to the legislative champions, CAA members, our lobbyist and the advocates across the State who never give up because we know the difference the arts make socially, economically and spiritually.

Historically when we see success we tend to get complacent, we sit back and say but the arts are getting back to historic funding levels, we are good. But for those who fight from the trenches we know this is not true. We must continue to build awareness with new administrations, demonstrate our value, look for new funding opportunities and support equity in the arts for all Californians. There is still a lot of work to be done and we are here to make that happen.

Just last week our board met for a retreat. We set out a plan to bring back arts advocacy day but renamed as Arts, Culture and Creativity Month (ACCM) because one day to celebrate the power of the arts is simply not enough! ACCM will be a series of activities developed throughout California in April of 2019 with a soon to be determined date at the Capitol with legislative visits. Right now we are creating the materials to train delegates across the State to advocate for the arts in your local communities, and at the State and Federal levels.

If you are interested in a training in your area, please send Executive Director Julie Baker an email, membership@californiaartsadvocates.org Working together with a common message, our voice and our support grows stronger. We also identified other priorities for our partner organization Californians for the Arts including the creation of a cultural equity committee and professional development series, surveys of the field and more. We are here to represent your concerns and your voices, so please let us know your priorities too.

And although we’ve done an excellent job advocating for state funding for the arts, we’ve neglected to make our own organization’s sustainability a priority. We need your support to continue to build upon the great strides we have already made and to be the network of networks for arts advocacy in California. As the 5th largest economy in the world, California leads, as identified in the 2018 Otis Report, in the Creative economy output which totaled $407.1 billion (direct, indirect, and induced) and generated 1.6 million jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and those wage and salary workers earned $141.5 billion in total labor income.

With 789,900 direct jobs in the creative economy, California surpasses New York State which has 477,300 jobs followed by Texas at 230,500. We are a force to be reckoned with, our mission has never been clearer and we are ready with your support to grow support for the arts in California. If you are not a member, please join or renew today! If you want to make a personal contribution, please donate to Californians for the Arts.

Thank you for your commitment to create a better California by advancing the arts, culture and creativity.

victoria_s signature1

Victoria L. Hamilton
President of CAA/CFTA
Julie Baker Sig
Julie Baker
Executive Director, CAA/CFTA
Election News
Congratulations Governor Newsom!
We look forward to working with you to advance the arts in California.

Yes-on-E-Logo-Design (1)Proposition E passes by a 2/3 majority in San Francisco

Congratulations to CAA board members Jonathon Moscone and Brad Erickson for their tenacity and hard work to see Prop E pass by 74% in San Francisco. Proposition E will send a portion of the revenue from the city’s tax on hotel room stays to fund arts and cultural programs. Erickson provided this quote as he boarded a plane for NY this morning, “In San Francisco, Proposition E won and won big, with more than 3/4 of the vote. The measure was backed by an extraordinary coalition of arts and culture groups — large and small budget organizations, white-led companies and organizations of color, individual artists and fired-up citizens who understand the crucial role of the arts in making San Francisco the famously vibrant, open and creative city it is”.

For more information on Proposition E in San Francisco, Click HERE
Click HERE for a full report on California elections.

Americans for the Arts Hosts: Post-Midterm Election Coverage
What it means for the arts and what’s next
November 19, 3pm

The 2018 Mid-Term Elections will undoubtedly bring a lot of changes to the political arena. But what will this mean for the arts? Join Nina Ozlu Tunceli, Chief Counsel of Government and Public Affairs & Executive Director, Americans for the Arts Action Fund, Narric Rome, Vice President of Government Affairs and Arts Education, Lauren Cohen, Government Affairs and Grassroots Coordinator, Jay Dick, Senior Director of State and Local Government Affairs, and Elisabeth Dorman, State and Local Government Affairs Manager, as we review the results of the 2018 Mid-Term Elections and the potential implications to the arts at the state and federal levels. We will review changes to the U.S. Congress, as well as Governorships and state and local ballot initiatives impact on the arts.

Click HERE for more info.

Open Call for Panelists & CAC 2018-2019 Grant Programs

CAA News

open call for panelistsOpen Call for Panelists

Apply to serve on a California Arts Council peer-review grant panel! Participate in cultural policy in action. New this year: Panelists receive an honorarium for their in-person service.

More Info
Deadlines to apply:
November 15, 2018, and January 15, 2019



CAC Grants Open Now

The California Arts Council helps maintain California’s unique identity by investing in organizations that keep its artistic energy thriving and make its diverse communities healthy and vibrant. Program-specific details, dates, guidelines, staff contacts, and more can be found at the links below.

Click HERE for application resources, grantee forms, CAC logos, and panel information, visit our Programs Resources page.

WATCH: A video overview of 2018-2019 Grant Programs & Funding Opportunities.

Board Member News

New CEO of Lewis Prize for Music

Board Member Dalouge Smith is now CEO of the Lewis Prize for Music established this year by philanthropist Daniel R. Lewis.

Dalouge served as President and CEO of San Diego Youth Symphony and Conservatory (SDYS) for over thirteen years where he led SDYS’ advocacy work that resulted in the restoration of in-school arts education for 40,000 children.

The Lewis Prize will recognize and resource extraordinary activist-music-creatives across the country to build more vibrant and fair communities for all. In this KPBS Radio first person segment, Dalouge explains what drew him to the arts and arts advocacy.


CAA Past President and board member Rick Stein meets Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon

(District 73-Southeastern Los Angeles County) at a recent event in Newport Beach, where he thanked him for supporting increased funding for arts and arts education.

Did you know Speaker Rendon hosts periodic lectures and panels, and recently held one on the topic of “California Exceptionalism,” featuring artist Judy Baca, architect Frank Gehry and theatre director Peter Sellars?

Upcoming November Events

https__2f_2fcdn-evbuc-com_2fimages_2f48699357_2f96500577383_2f1_2foriginal.jpgSAVE THE DATE!


December 10-11, Sacramento, CA
2 day free convening SLP / SRN Grantee Meeting sponsored by California Arts Council.

Click HERE for more info & to register.


Nov 08, 11am-12pm: Webinar: ‘Youth Arts Action’ Grant Program, California Arts Council, FREE!


Nov 09-12, various: National Arts Marketing Project Conference, Americans for the Arts, Seattle, WA
Nov 09-12, various: California Art Education Association 2018 Conference, CAEA, Long Beach, CA
Nov 11-14, various: NAfME National Conference, National Association for Music Education, Dallas, TX
Nov 13, 11am-12pm: Webinar: Grants for Arts and Justice, California Arts Council, FREE!
Nov 14, 11am-12pm: Webinar: ‘Veterans in the Arts’ Grant Program, California Arts Council, FREE!
Nov 14-17, various: Conference of Community Arts Education, NGFCAE, Baltimore MD



Thursday, November 8, 2018
San Francisco, CA. FREE!
Join us for the San Francisco Arts Commission’s 5th annual
EVERY DAY, EVERY WAY: Arts-Focused Youth Programming in After School Mini-ConferenceEdutainment for Equity presenter Candice Wicks-Davis leads a participatory workshop for youth and culture workers, administrators and teaching artists exploring the connections between art, equity and social justice in an after-school setting.
The workshop includes time for creative exploration and strategizing about how to implement these activities with youth at your after-school site. Light breakfast and lunch provided.

Click HERE for more info & to register

October News

Message from President

VictoriaOctober is National Arts and Humanities Month, a coast-to-coast collective celebration of culture in America. During the month-long celebration, Americans for the Arts and California Arts Advocates/Californians for the Arts encourage Californians to explore new facets of the arts and humanities in their lives.

Check out  #ShowYourArt2018,  Americans for the Art’s social media campaign which will highlight personal stories and engage arts advocates on local, state, and national levels. The campaign will feature a unique theme every day in October, and individuals and organizations are encouraged to share images on Instagram (tagging @americans4arts with #ShowYourArt2018).

Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts says, “National Arts and Humanities Month” is an opportunity to enjoy a little more art for yourself and also to recognize and celebrate the positive impact the arts bring to our communities, and I hope that everyone will take part.”

Your engagement is welcome by encouraging individuals and organizations to participate in the arts; allowing governments and businesses to show their support of the arts; and raising public awareness about the role the arts and humanities play in our communities and lives.

Thank you for your commitment to create a better California by advancing the arts, culture and creativity.

Best wishes,
victoria_s signature1
Victoria L. Hamilton , President of CAA/CFTA


October Headers2


Dear Arts Colleagues,

I am so delighted to write to you today as the first Executive Director for California Arts Advocates. Like you, I am a culture maker, an arts warrior and advocate for arts, culture and creativity to be heralded, supported and cherished. I don’t need to tell you the value arts bring to a community but we do need to share the data and our success stories. I am proud to represent both organizations. CAA is your statewide arts advocacy organization building a movement of inclusivity, awareness, funding and support for the transformative and transactional impact of the arts in California. Californians for the Arts, our 501(c)3 partner organization is a Statewide and Regional Network providing professional advocacy tools and programs to represent the needs of artists and arts organizations across the State.

The arts have been my life’s work. From New York City to Santa Cruz and Nevada City, CA I have dedicated my time, talent and resources to building community through art. When most recently I was invited to speak on a panel at a symposium presented by our county public health department on building healthy communities, I was so grateful the arts were at the table and included in the conversation; that is arts advocacy at work! Nevada City along with its neighboring city Grass Valley are one of the 14 pilot California Cultural districts awarded by the CAC. It is exciting to see how this designation will help define and improve our rural communities and how it will make an impact in the 13 other awarded districts. We are watching this closely as there are great opportunities that come with these programs.

This is a busy month for Arts convenings and I plan to be at as many as I can! This week you will find me at Arts and the Public Good, 29th annual Envisioning California Conference in Sacramento. Later in the month, I will attend Grantmakers in the Arts, Create CA, a visit to Los Angeles and wrapping up the month with a board offsite to create our strategic action plan. Where will you be this month? We want to be your source for arts activities across the state.

If you have information you would like us to include in our monthly newsletter, you can email me directly at membership@californiaartsadvocates.org

In order for us to continue to employ our lobbyist and apply resources to fight for increased and permanent funding for the California Arts Council, in order for us to watch and propose legislation that benefits the arts and build relationships with legislators, in order for us to build new programs and professional web based tools for advocacy, we need you to invest in our efforts.

Membership is based on your organizational size and starts at $50.
If you are not representing an organization, but still want to support our efforts, please make a donation here.

I look forward to working with you in partnership to advance the arts, culture and creativity of California.

Julie Baker Sig
Julie Baker
 , Executive Director, CAA/CFTA


October Headers3

AB 2456 passes!
On September 28,  legislation to allow fair compensation for peer review panelists in the CA Arts Council was signed by Governor Jerry Brown. AB 2456, authored by Assembly member Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica), authorizes the California Arts Council to compensate grant program review panelists for their time spent reviewing and discussing grant program applications. LEARN MORE
SB 933 Vetoed by Governor
See his letter to the California State Senate HERE

October Headers4

October 04: 29th annual Envisioning California Conference , Arts & the Public Good, Sacramento, CA

October 09: CAC Grants Workshop , Irvine, CA

October 10: CAC Grants Workshops , Fresno / Oceanside, CA

October 10: Legal Clinic for Creative Artists and Inventors , San Jose, CA

October 15: CAC Grants Workshop, Bakersfield, CA

October 15-16: Create CA Annual Statewide Convening, San Jose, CA

October 16: CAC Grants WorkshopsPlacerville / Chico, CA

October 16: Creative Youth DevelopmentSan Diego, CA

October 16-18: Grantmakers for Education Annual ConferenceCoronado, CA

October 21-24: Grantmakers in the Arts , Oakland, CA


https__2F_2Fcdn.evbuc.com_2Fimages_2F48699357_2F96500577383_2F1_2ForiginalSAVE THE DATE!

Thursday, November 8, 2018
2nd Annual Redding Cultural District Summit
Redding, CA. FREE!
Click HERE for more info & to register
2 day free convening SLP / SRN Grantee Meeting sponsored by California Arts Council
December 10-11, Sacramento, CA  MORE INFO

October Headers5

Did you know that in California, 21 of our 53 U.S. House members received an A in this year’s Congressional Arts Report Card  and both of our Senators received a Thumbs Up?

See pages 9 and 21 of the report for details.

Screen Shot 2018-10-03 at 1.35.16 PM


October Headers6

Join or Renew Now! We need your support. Membership is from July 1 – June 30 annually.

CAA has an impressive track record over the last six years in gradually restoring funding to the California Arts Council (CAC) but we are not back to the historic $32M peak from 2001 and California is still ranked 28th out of 50 states in per capita state arts funding for 2018-19. With all sources combined, the Arts Council’s total 2018-19 budget will be approximately $27.53 million but only $15.1 million is permanent general fund allocation.

We hope to see funding for the arts be at historic levels and be a permanent line item in the state budget but until that time we must continue to lobby and educate our legislators. The creative economy depends on it and all communities that receive CAC grants benefit from our work. Individual membership starts as low as $35 and organizational membership is based on your annual budget and starts as low as $50.

If you are a current member of CAA, thank you, your support made these efforts possible. If you are not a member or it is time to renew, JOIN NOW!

Please support CAA’s work through your personal or organizational membership. DONATE

Californians for the Arts and California Arts Advocates Names New Executive Director

Sacramento, CA Californians for the Arts (CFTA), a statewide network of arts organizations and California Arts Advocates (CAA), a statewide arts advocacy organization, has named Julie Baker as Executive Director.

“With a unanimous vote by the board, we are ecstatic to have Julie Baker step up as the first Executive Director of CAA/CFTA,” said Victoria L. Hamilton, Board President. “In addition to being a skilled arts administrator for over 30 years, she comes to the position as an enthusiastic, passionate arts leader who will dedicate her time to navigate both organizations through a significant time in advancing California through arts, culture and creativity.”

Baker served as Interim Executive Director for CAA/CFTA and has served on the board of CFTA and CAA as chair of the membership committee. Baker, 51, is owner of Julie Baker Projects, a consulting firm specializing in arts management and programming. Baker is a seasoned business owner and management professional with over 30 years of experience in art, service, retail and technology industries. From 2009-2017, Julie Baker served as the Executive Director of The Center for the Arts, a non-profit performing arts venue and organization located in Grass Valley, CA. In addition to presenting over 150 events per year and increasing revenue by over 70% in less than 5 years, in 2014 Baker led the successful acquisition of California WorldFest, an 18-year old established music and camping festival. In 2018, Baker was awarded the first annual Peggy Levine Arts & Service award by the Nevada County Arts Council.

“This is an exciting time for our organizations and I am thrilled to steward the growth and value as we pivot from an all-volunteer organization to dedicated leadership,” says Baker. “California is the world’s 5th largest economy in the world with the creative economy accounting for $407.1 billion (Source Otis Report 2018) and yet trails nationwide in state funding for the arts (28th in per capita spending). Building awareness of the value of the arts to legislators and giving arts organizations and artists the tools to advocate for funding and appreciation for the arts is our goal and my passion. I am honored to be leading this charge alongside our skilled and experienced board of directors from across the state.”

Ms. Baker is a former board member of California Presenters, a statewide coalition committed to connecting, engaging and developing performing arts professionals from organizations of varied sizes and structures; and advocating for important issues in the presenting field; and the Arts Collaborative of Nevada County, the state local partner for Nevada County.

About California Arts Advocates (CAA)
Founded in 1996 as a nonprofit 501(c)(4) statewide advocacy organization by leaders in the arts field, CAA has been the collaborative force behind the battle to protect arts funding in California, as well as the successful passage of several bills that return arts programs to schools, and laws that positively impact the arts. CAA has recently been instrumental in increasing funding for the arts in California in the last 5 years by $14.1 million.

About Californians for the Arts (CFTA) CFTA, a 501c3 organization was established in 2007 by California Arts Advocates as a partner organization to increase public awareness of the importance of the arts; to ensure that the arts are an ongoing part of the public dialogue, and to encourage Californians to care about the arts as a critical component of their own lives and the lives of their communities.