Hello and Welcome,

In reaction to President Trump’s call for the termination of funding for the federal cultural agencies, Americans for the Arts convened a record-breaking Arts Advocacy Day on March 20-21, 2017. More than 400 face-to-face meetings took place on Capitol Hill with over 700 participants to share their stories of the impact of the arts in America. Advocacy is more important now than ever, and we appreciate your increased efforts in support of federal funding for the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Corporation of Public Broadcasting, and Institute of Museum and Library Services. We continue to add content to our Arts Mobilization Center (AmericansForTheArts.org/Mobilize), increase decision-maker education through our communications strategies, and partner with you and our national alliances to align messages and actions.

As part of this work, we continue to gather local stories about the impact of the arts in communities across the country. I look forward to hearing your narratives during our 2017 Annual Convention in San Francisco. As we do each year, we will celebrate field leaders who have made an impact. I want to particularly congratulate Laura Zucker* for her instrumental work during her 25 years at the Los Angeles County Arts Commission* in developing and curating the arts and culture sector in Los Angeles County and her national leadership of the local arts agency field.

The actions you take locally are vital to the development of our communities and the work we are doing nationally. Discussions at the Convention will revolve around five core themes: Engaging Equity, Inspiring Activation, Embracing Reinvention, Celebrating Optimism, and Building Skills. These themes provide opportunities for us to build together an even stronger and more inclusive future for the arts.

It’s been one year since the release of our Statement on Cultural Equity. We remain committed to this core belief, even as political, social, and economic climates are constantly evolving. Now is the time to mobilize, and remember what Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation, said during our Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts & Public Policy this year: “investment in the arts is an investment in moral imagination, in our capacity for empathy—an investment in the kind of greatness that comes with a deeper, richer understanding of one another and ourselves.”


Robert Lynch

CEO & President, Americans for the Arts

Aug 18, 2017

Americans for the Arts releases a statement about the complex and important impact of public art, including monuments to the Confederacy, on the history and pride of diverse communities, and encourages ongoing civic dialogue around the removal and replacement of these monuments.

Aug 15, 2017

ArtBuilt’s new space in the Brooklyn Army Terminal is a step towards addressing the need for affordable workspace, providing a dynamic new base of operations for dozens of artists and creative workers.

Jul 24, 2017

Americans for the Arts members can apply for one of five scholarship opportunities to attend the 2017 National Arts Marketing Project (NAMP) Conference in Memphis.

2017 Convention State of Arts Speech

Americans for the Arts CEO, Robert L. Lynch, delivers his annual presentation on the State of the Arts at the 2017 Annual Convention in San Francisco on June 16, 2017.

2016 Convention State of Arts Speech (6.4 MB)

Americans for the Arts CEO, Robert L. Lynch, delivers his annual presentation on the State of the Arts at the 2016 Annual Convention in Boston on June 17, 2016.

View the corresponding speech of the presntation.

2015 Convention State of Arts Speech (28.4 MB)

Americans for the Arts CEO, Robert L. Lynch, delivers his annual presentation on the State of the Arts at the 2015 Annual Convention in Chicago on June 12, 2015.

View the corresponding speech of the presentation.

Transforming America's Communities (2.91 MB)

Americans for the Arts CEO Robert L. Lynch's presentation on the new Transform America's Communities through the Arts initiative.

Click here to learn more about Transforming America's Communities.


Meet President & CEO Robert L. Lynch

Robert L. Lynch is president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. With more than 40 years of experience in the arts industry, he is motivated by his personal mission to empower communities and leaders to advance the arts in society, and in the lives of citizens. In 1996, Lynch managed the successful merger of the National Assembly of Local Arts Agencies, where he had spent 12 years as executive director, with the American Council for the Arts to form Americans for the Arts. Under his 30 years of leadership, the services and membership of Americans for the Arts have grown to more than 50 times their original size.