As one of the larger producers and providers of premium audio storytelling, Audible has been focused on providing a destination for artists to share their work with the world. Audible’s passion for the arts is deeply embedded in its culture and drives everything the company does – from the content it creates, the principles that guide its work as well as the company’s community initiatives that strive to make a positive impact across the globe. Within its own community in Newark, Audible continues to launch various initiatives to elevate the work of local artists and encourage local investment in Newark’s creative community.
2021 Arts + Business Partnership Award Honorees
Best Businesses Partnering with the Arts in America
Presented annually by Americans for the Arts, the Arts + Business Partnership Awards recognize businesses of all sizes from around the country for exceptional mutually beneficial, innovative, and sustained collaborations with the arts. An individual arts-champion receives the BCA Leadership Award and an extraordinary collaboration between a business and its arts partner is awarded the David Rockefeller pARTnership Award. Recipients are nominated through an open national call issued each January and celebrated at the Arts + Business Partnership Awards gala.
Arts + Business Partnership Award
From its humble beginnings as a publisher of an urban rag for Honolulu’s downtown district, NMG Network has grown to become a leading video, digital, social, and print network that reaches an audience of millions of people. NMG’s work highlights arts, culture, social justice issues, and travel with strong journalism and custom content. The company’s focus on Hawaii has helped sustain island traditions and support innovations including the growth of Hawaii’s Arts District.
At the intersection of arts, data analytics, healthcare and future of work, Underestimated People of Purpose (UPOP) delivers powerful information to business leaders to assist in aligning culture change management programs with enterprise innovation strategies. UPOP’s withstella initiative, an inclusive innovation pilot being led by UPOP in collaboration with BOMA Global and diverse organizations across five major U.S. cities, seeks to expand opportunities for artists who want to collaborate with industries and use data analytics to operationalize the economic viability and cultural value for investing in this emergent creative workforce model.
As an award-winning hospitality and entertainment destination, Universal Orlando Resort understands the important role the arts play in making the local community a better place for all, which is reflected by support of the arts at all levels. The company has a history of supporting public art and programs outside of traditional art venues, including projects like See Art Orlando, Orlando Fringe Festival and its Art of Tomorrow program developed and launched in partnership with Orange County Public Schools. Universal Orlando possesses a workforce that is very active in the local community through service activities and volunteerism with a collaborative goal to inspire and help seed the next generation of creative talent.
Since 1954, University of Michigan Credit Union (UMCU) has been a community leader in the arts by not only providing support through its own financial products but also through various strategic partnerships, grants, donations and company projects aimed at strengthening the local ecosystem. UMCU has a broad-based marketing strategy that includes an external presence in local arts spaces and events as well as inviting the arts into their spaces to share with their own employees.
As one of the leading privately held real estate companies in the western United States, Vestar acquires, develops, and manages retail and entertainment destinations of varying size that serve as cultural locations and community focal points. With a community-centered approach, Vestar understands that art brings connection and expresses the unique spirit of people within that community. Vestar repurposes existing areas and creates space for art to be shared in an impactful way as exhibited by The Gateway development in downtown Salt Lake City which has amplified the work of many Utah artists and created an active location for local arts and culture.
David Rockefeller pARTnership Award
PNC has long understood the unique and crucial role that arts organizations play in fostering discussions on the most complex matters of our time and helping advance diversity in thought. The arts have been pivotal to affecting social change, and PNC’s unwavering commitment to the arts acknowledges this inherent strength. Within Greater St. Louis, PNC’s long-standing collaboration with the Arts and Education Council provides organizations with crucial funding for arts and education programs that address community needs. With support from the PNC Foundation, the Arts and Education Council administers the stARTup Creative Competition, which infuses financial and incubation support into new local arts organizations that offer creative approaches to arts access and programming.
BCA Leadership Award
Aziz Hasan is a Brooklyn-based illustrator, graphic designer, dancer and creative executive who is currently the CEO of Kickstarter, a funding platform for creative projects of all kinds. Understanding the vital role arts played in his life, Aziz leads Kickstarter under the principle that art and creative expression are essential to a healthy and vibrant society and deserve a protected space no matter how big or small the idea is. Under Aziz’s leadership, Kickstarter has made history: setting an historic record of $777 million pledged to nearly 19,000 creative projects in just one year and receiving the very first Design Visionary Award by the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum for Kickstarter’s profound economic and cultural impact.