Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Americans for the Arts will be joined by more than 550 grassroots advocates from across the country on March 12–13, 2018, as they meet with their members of Congress to encourage support for arts funding and education. Now in their 31st year, the events are presented by Americans for the Arts and co-sponsored by 85 national organizational partners representing arts, culture, business, civic, and education institutions and individuals nationwide. 

March 12: Nancy Hanks Lecture – 6:30 p.m., Kennedy Center

Following a day of advocacy training at the Grand Hyatt Washington, attendees will head to the Eisenhower Theater of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, where Librarian of Congress Dr. Carla Hayden will moderate a conversation with Lonnie G. Bunch III, Founding Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and Richard D. Parsons, Board Member of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and Board Chairman of The Rockefeller Foundation. The evening will also feature a special performance by the Washington Performing Arts Men, Women and Children of the Gospel Choirs

March 13: Congressional Arts Kick Off – 8:30 a.m., Kennedy Caucus Room, 325 Russell Senate Office Building

The Congressional Arts Kick Off is designed to rally the hundreds of advocates immediately before meeting with their members of Congress across the Capitol. During the event, the Congressional Arts Leadership Award will be presented to Congressman Leonard Lance (R-NJ). The award recognizes distinguished service on behalf of the arts and is given jointly by Americans for the Arts and The United States Conference of Mayors. 
 
Speakers at the Kick Off include: 
  • Gillian Jacobs, actress and director known best for her work on Netflix's Love and NBC's Community
  • U.S. House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD)
  • U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL)
  • Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM), Ranking Member on the U.S. Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee
  • Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ), co-chair of the Congressional Arts Caucus
  • Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA)
  • Jon Parrish Peede, senior deputy chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities
  • Jane Chu, chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts
  • Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts
  • Carla Dirlikov Canales, mezzo-soprano
“Arts Advocacy Day is the largest gathering of its kind—a strong, unified coalition that has been instrumental in helping advance key legislative initiatives for over a quarter century. No matter who you are or where you are from, the arts are an important creative and economic resource that should be prioritized by local, state and federal government,” said Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts.   
 
Due to security and space limitations, media must register in advance of the events. Press should contact Inga Vitols at ivitols@artsusa.org, or 202-371-2830, for press credentials. 
 
Americans for the Arts extends its gratitude to the Rosenthal Family Foundation (Jamie Rosenthal Wolf, David Wolf, Rick Rosenthal and Nancy Stephens), Ovation, and The Max and Victoria Dreyfus Foundation, Inc. for their generous support of the Americans for the Arts 31st Annual Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts and Public Policy. Americans for the Arts also thanks The Reva and David Logan Foundation and LIFEWTR for their generous support of Arts Advocacy Day.
 
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 55 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.