Americans for the Arts Praises Chu’s Experience in Arts and Management

Thursday, June 12, 2014

WASHINGTON - Today the U.S. Senate confirmed Dr. Jane Chu as chair of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Chu is currently the president and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Mo. She fills a chair position left vacant at the NEA since Rocco Landesman stepped down in 2012.

“Today’s confirmation of Dr. Jane Chu is great news for not only the National Endowment for the Arts, but also for the arts in our country,” said Robert Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “Dr. Chu brings an insightful combination of expertise to the position—experience in arts education, business administration, and philanthropy. She also understands the value of art at the community level and how the arts are transformative to individuals as well as places.”

Before joining the Kauffman Center in 2006, Chu served as fund executive at the Kauffman Fund for Kansas City, vice president of external relations for the Union Station Kansas City, and vice president of community investment for the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation. She holds degrees in visual arts, piano performance and piano pedagogy, an MBA, and a Ph.D. in philanthropic studies. Nonprofit Connect in Kansas City recently named her their Nonprofit Professional of the Year.

Since 1965, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has awarded over $5 billion in grants across all 50 states via local, state, and federal partnerships, including projects with the U.S. Department of Defense and the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Each grant dollar on average is matched by $9 of additional investments. As such, the NEA stands as the largest annual national supporter of the nonprofit arts in the United States, increasing public access to and engagement with the arts, strengthening American communities, and helping foster a diverse, innovative, productive, and motivated 21st-century workforce. All together, the nonprofit arts industry and its audiences is a $135 billion industry employing 4.1 million Americans.

Lynch added, “Americans for the Arts applauds the Senate’s confirmation of Dr. Chu and looks forward to working hand in hand with her and the National Endowment for the Arts.”

The announcement of Chu’s confirmation will be a cause for celebration at the 2014 Annual Convention for Americans for the Arts in Nashville, Tenn. where more than 1,000 arts professionals and community leaders are gathering June 13-15.

Americans for the Arts is the leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education in America. With offices in Washington, D.C., and New York City, it has a record of more than 50 years of service. Americans for the Arts is dedicated to representing and serving local communities and creating opportunities for every American to participate in and appreciate all forms of the arts.



Graham Dunstan
Americans for the Arts