The Arts Advocacy Day Call to Action Included:

2010 Congressional Arts Leadership Award Presented to Nancy Pelosi
Americans for the Arts President and CEO Robert Lynch (left) and US Conference of Mayors Executive Director Tom Cochran (right) present the 2010 Congressional Arts Leadership Award to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).

Support a Budget of $180 Million for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

Ask Congress to support a budget of $180 million for the NEA in the FY 2011 Interior Appropriations bill to increase funding for the creation, preservation, and presentation of the arts in America through the NEA’s core programs—Access to Artistic Excellence, Challenge America: Reaching Every Community, Federal/State Partnerships, and Learning in the Arts. After designating an increase for core programs, provide for the president’s request to fund a new initiative, Our Town.

Increase Funding for Arts Education through the U.S. Department of Education
Ask Congress to support a $53 million funding level for the U.S. Department of Education’s Arts in Education programs in the FY 2011 Labor-HHS-Education appropriations bill. The Arts in Education programs support newly emerging models in high-poverty schools that improve arts learning.

Allow Artists a Tax Deduction for Gifts of Their Own Work
We urge members of Congress to co-sponsor bipartisan legislation, S. 405 or H.R.1126, which would allow artists to take a fair-market value deduction for works given to and retained by nonprofit institutions.

Congressional Arts Kick Off Event

Arts Advocacy Day officially kicked off at Congressional Arts Kick Off event on Capitol Hill, organized by Americans for the Arts in conjunction with the Congressional Arts Caucus. At the breakfast, Americans for the Arts and The U.S. Conference of Mayors jointly presented the 2010 Award for Congressional Arts Leadership to Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).


Special Hearing of the House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee

Kyle MacLachlan
Actor Kyle MacLachlan testifies on Arts Advocacy Day.

For the fourth consective year, in conjuncition with Arts Advocacy Day, Americans for the Arts presented testimony at a congressional hearing with the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior. This committee allocates funding for the National Endowment for the Arts and other agencies and witnesses were on hand to ask Congress to support a budget of $180 million for the National Endowment for the Arts in FY 2011.

Testifying to the committee was a diverse group that included Terri Aldrich, Executive Director, Minot Area Council of the Arts; Brig. Gen. Nolen V. Bivens, U.S. Army (ret.); Jeff Daniels, Golden Globe-nominated film and stage actor; Kyle MacLachlan, Emmy-nominated TV, film, and stage actor; Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter; Charles Segars, CEO, Ovation; and Robert L. Lynch, President and CEO, Americans for the Arts.

23rd Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy

On the eve of Arts Advocacy Day, Mayor of Charleston, SC, Joseph P. Riley, Jr. delivered the 23rd Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy to a crowd of arts advocates and distinguished guests in the Concert Hall of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Mayor Riley’s speech focused on the art of city design and the role mayors can play in transforming their cities into dynamic and more livable cultural communities. In addition the event featured performances from the Washington Performing Arts Society's Men and Women of the Gospel Choir. To listen to the lecture, please visit this summary page.

Mayor Joseph Riley

Selected Press Coverage About Arts Advocacy Day

Americans for the Arts Organizes Hearing on Arts Advocacy Day 2010

For the fourth consecutive year in conjunction with Arts Advocacy Day, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, chaired by Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) hosted a hearing on the importance of investing in the arts. Americans for the Arts organized witnesses to give testimony before the subcommittee, which determines the budget levels for the National Endowment for the Arts. The hearing was held on Tuesday, April 13, following the Congressional Arts Kick Off Event and focused on the theme of the "Arts Build Communities."

Those testifying were:

  • Actor Kyle MacLachlan is best known for his roles in the films Blue Velvet, Dune, and as Ray Manzarek, the legendary keyboardist in the Oliver Stone film The Doors. His television series roles include Orson Hodge in Desperate Housewives, Trey MacDougal in Sex and the City, and Special Agent Dale Cooper in Twin Peaks, for which he won a Golden Globe. Kyle is a member of the Americans for the Arts Artists Committee. Read Mr. MacLachlan's testimony (PDF).

  • Jeff Daniels is Founder and Executive Director of Michigan's Purple Rose Theatre Company, a professional nonprofit equity theatre. Jeff has also appeared in more than fifty films, including The Squid And The Whale, Woody Allen’s The Purple Rose of Cairo and Something Wild, all three of which led to Golden Globe nominations. On Broadway he was nominated for a Tony award for his current role in God of Carnage. Read Mr. Daniels' testimony (PDF).

  • Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter is a lifetime Philadelphian, with an accomplished career of public service, business and financial administration. Before being elected mayor in 2007, Michael served as a City Councilman for nearly 15 years representing Philadelphia’s Fourth District—one of the city’s largest—encompassing the communities of Wynnefield, Overbrook, Roxborough, Manayunk, East Falls, Mt. Airy, and parts of North and West Philadelphia. Read Mayor Nutter's testimony (PDF).

  • Terri Aldrich is executive director of the Minot Area Council of the Arts (MACA) in Minot, North Dakota. The MACA is a nonprofit local arts agency providing services to member organizations including, the symphony orchestra, opera company, art museum, ballet theater company, contemporary dance companies, and community theater companies. Nearly 40 arts and cultural organizations call Minot home. Read Ms. Aldrich's testimony (PDF).

  • U.S. Army Brigadier General Nolen Bivens (Ret.) entered the US Army in 1976 and was commissioned as an Infantry 2nd Lieutenant. In U.S. Army uniform for more than three decades, he worked his way through the ranks at home and abroad, serving in capacities of increasing responsibility. His last assignment before joining General Dynamics was Chief of Staff, U.S. Southern Command in Miami, Florida, where he was responsible for leading the joint military and interagency combatant command staff and managing a $1 billion international security cooperation program. Nolen is a member of the Americans for the Arts Board of Directors. Read General Bivens' testimony (PDF).

  • Charles Segars is the CEO of Ovation TV, a television channel dedicated to art, performance, and creativity. Charles is also a movie producer and a TV and film executive. Ovation has given $5 million in sponsorship grants and in-kind media in support of local arts education and cultural institutions, providing them with direct support for their programs and free public service announcements (PSA’s). He was also an executive producer on the films National Treasure, and National Treasure: Book of Secrets and co-wrote the story for the first National Treasure. Read Mr. Segars' testimony (PDF).

  • Robert Lynch is the president and CEO of Americans for the Arts, the national organization dedicated to advancing the arts and arts education in people’s lives, schools, and communities. Celebrating its 50th Anniversary this year, Americans for the Arts is the national convener of Arts Advocacy Day, which is co-sponsored by more than 85 national arts service organizations, representing thousands of nonprofit arts groups, state and local arts agencies and artists of every discipline across the country. Read Mr. Lynch's testimony (PDF).