October is national arts and humanities month, and PM magazine joins this annual celebration­ of creating a local, state, and national focus on the arts and humanities with its article “The Arts Strong Connection” by Robert Lynch, president of the Americans for the Arts, Washington, D.C.

In it, Lynch writes that arts and cultural organizations pumped an estimated $63.8 billion into the nation’s economy in 2015, supporting 2.3 million jobs. Communities like Durango, Colorado (Ron LeBlanc, city manager) and York County, South Carolina (Bill Shanahan, county manager) are showcased for their cultural endeavors.

More than 4,500 communities have a local arts agency, and Lynch encourages local governments to establish an agency, taking these steps to create one:

  • Contact your state arts agency for help and guidance.
  • Check out our resources as local arts agencies do vastly different things, and thus, there are a lot of models to pick from.
  • Connect with your local arts groups and business leaders regarding this idea.
  • Look to see if there is a local arts agency in a neighboring town that you can invite to talk with key decision makers.
  • Reach out to Americans for the Arts for guidance at jay@artsusa.org.

Find out more specifics on the positive value of arts in local government and other management initiatives in the October issue.


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