Americans for the Arts Responds to Rocco Landesmanís Nomination as National Endowment for the Arts Chair
Washington, DC — May 13, 2009 — Americans for the Arts President and CEO Robert L. Lynch issued the following statement on President Barack Obama’s nomination of Rocco Landesman to serve as Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts:
“I am excited to see that President Obama has made a bold choice in selecting Rocco Landesman as Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. His nomination represents an important opportunity to advance the mission of the NEA to provide access to the arts for all. As evidenced in his work as a theatrical producer, Landesman has an entrepreneurial spirit that will allow the NEA to spotlight the broad spectrum of the arts in America to the nation and to the world. The nomination also represents President Obama’s continued dedication to bring all of the arts to all Americans, and his understanding of the critical role the arts play in reflecting our shared values and the strength of our diversity and democracy.
“The arts are a powerful force in our lives, schools, and communities. Both the nonprofit and for-profit arts have grown as the creative industries have dramatically expanded and become a core part of America and its economy. An effective and innovative NEA, one that adheres to its core values of creation, presentation, and access with a dedication to forge new partnerships and opportunities for artists and their audiences, will not only strengthen the arts industry but maximize the social and economic benefits the arts provide throughout the country.”
During the 2008 presidential campaign, Americans for the Arts’ ArtsVote2008 initiative issued a Pro-Arts Policy Brief to all presidential candidates, outlining 10 public policy concerns, how those concerns relate to the arts, and proposals on how to address them. These policies are now being addressed by President Obama, who set his support for the arts early in his candidacy.
The FY 2009 Omnibus Bill, passed in March, set funding for the NEA at $155 million. Last week, the White House recommended it be funded at $161 million for FY 2010. This request would take the agency to its highest funding level in 15 years.
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Americans for the Arts is the leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts in America. With offices in Washington, DC, and New York City, it has a record of 49 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. Additional information is available at www.AmericansForTheArts.org.