Assembly 2008 Financial Workshop!


About Assembly 2008
Why You Should Participate
Travel Justification Tips
Share Your Wares in the Resource Room


Join NASAA and our host, the Tennessee Arts Commission, for three days of learning, networking, inspiration and southern hospitality. Experience the vibrant riverfront, spectacular mountains, and unique cultural attractions and see firsthand why Chattanooga is A Great City by NatureSM

NASAA conferences provide essential education, networking and leadership opportunities for state arts agency staff and volunteers. Designed to both inform and inspire, the agenda will include briefing sessions (back by popular demand) as well as workshops, featured artists and speakers. Agenda details will be posted on the NASAA website throughout the summer.

  • NASAA is your community. Whether you are a staff member or volunteer, NASAA meetings are a singular opportunity to compare notes with your colleagues and be part of an influential national network of arts leaders.
  • A variety of peer groups will be meeting in Chattanooga. There will be sessions and events relevant to every state arts agency staff and council member, so take advantage of the team discounts.
  • Learn new ideas and skills that you can adapt to your work. Hear the latest ideas and innovations from inside and outside of the state arts agency field. Briefings, workshops and provocative speakers and performers will address a wide range of current issues and offer informative and participatory learning experiences.
  • Get inspired. Stimulate your own creative thinking and enthusiasm, and learn how to inspire others to recognize (and invest in!) the essential work of state arts agencies.
  • The entire assembly benefits from your participation. Every individual has unique perspectives and valuable experiences to share. By participating in the conference, you enhance the learning and networking opportunities available to all.
  • Enjoy lots of art, lots of fun, and experience the unique culture of Chattanooga, Tennessee!
NASAA can help members make the case for participation in Assembly 2008.
  • This is a national policy forum in which every single state and jurisdiction is represented. NASAA's meetings shape public policies that affect every state, and our state needs to have a voice in the proceedings.
  • NASAA conferences are a unique opportunity to bring national visibility to the work of our agency/program and to promote the cultural assets of our state.
  • NASAA is the only organization dedicated exclusively to the needs and interests of state arts agencies. The training and information provided at NASAA conferences enhance my ability to serve the citizens of our state by addressing my unique policy, planning, management and leadership development needs.
  • Participation in this event will help me better determine how our agency/program can contribute to our state's economic vitality, educational excellence and community development priorities.
  • Our state receives significant federal dollars, including funds to the state arts agency and funds to many other key organizations. Joining the National Endowment for the Arts staff at this convention helps me establish and maintain productive funding relationships that benefit our state as a whole.
  • The participation of multiple staff and volunteers is essential. One individual alone cannot adequately represent our state, nor secure all of the vital information that will be shared in the more than 25 sessions that will be taking place.
Furthermore, NASAA can offer a variety of flexible options for processing registration and travel expenses. Contact for additional information.


The Assembly 2008 Resource Room provides state arts agencies the opportunity to display their complimentary materials during the conference. Resource area hours are Thursday, September 11 through Saturday, September 13, 7:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Ship materials to the address below, making sure to include the group name, group contact, conference dates, and Convention Center contact on the label. Plan to have your materials arrive at the Convention Center between Tuesday, September 2 and Monday, September 8.

Materials will be placed in the Resource Room by NASAA staff. Please inform Sue Struve, NASAA Communications Manager, of all shipped materials, their expected arrival date, and if you plan to collect anything (remaining materials, sign-up sheets, etc.) from the Resource Room at the end of the conference. All materials must be collected by 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, September 13.

Ship materials to:

Chattanooga Convention Center
One Carter Plaza
Chestnut Street Loading Dock
Chattanooga, TN 37402
Attn: DockMaster

Include on the label:

Group Name: National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA)
Group Contact: Sharon Gee, Director of Meetings and Events (Phone 202-347-6352, ext. 112)
Conference Dates: Sept. 11-13, 2008
Chattanooga Convention Center Contact: Jeannine Hookey, Event Coordinator
(Phone: 423-756-0001)

Photos courtesy of Chattanooga Area Convention & Visitors Bureau


Special Guest Performer
Featured Performers
Tennessee Artists Showcase
More Performers


Special Guest Performer

Opening Session
Thursday, September 11
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

Founded in 1871, the Fisk Jubilee Singers were the first Tennessee musical group to gain international prominence, and today they continue to preserve a legacy of remarkable artistic and social significance. Through the Jubilee Singers, the world was introduced to the "Negro Spirituals," religious folksongs of slavery recast as concert choral pieces in the group's definitive "jubilee" style. As artistic achievement, their emotive harmonies spawned many overtones. Through them Nashville gained its first notoriety as a city of music. The popularity of their style gave birth to an entire genre of Black performance, emulated by countless other groups.

As home to the Fisk Jubilee Singers, the vocal music program at Fisk University strongly influenced music training at other African American institutions at all levels. But the Jubilee Singers also accomplished much beyond music. As fundraisers for Fisk University, they successfully wed touring student performance to the cause of African American education and financed construction of Jubilee Hall, one of Nashville's most historic buildings. Their worldwide notoriety greatly enhanced respect for African Americans and support for their advancement in the wake of emancipation, a role of continuing influence on civil rights and Black consciousness in America.

Beginning with the original Jubilee Singers and their founding director George L. White, many prominent musical figures have been associated with the group over the years. Paul Kwami masterfully oversees the tradition of the Jubilee Singers currently.

Recognizing the historical and cultural importance of the African American spiritual, the Tennessee Arts Commission conceived, and continues to fund, a special project commemorating the spirituals and the many contributions of the Fisk Jubilee Singers in preserving this unique art form. Under the American Masterpieces initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Commission has sponsored the Fisk Jubilee Singers in concerts within the state and produced curriculum materials as a lasting resource for Tennessee schools.

Today, the Fisk Jubilee Singers are celebrating their 136th anniversary and are an enduring tradition. The ensemble was one of the first six to be inducted into the Music City Walk of Fame in 2006, and received a Folklife Heritage Award during Tennessee's 2007 Governor's Awards in the Arts. Through song and spirit they promote peace, tolerance, and understanding among all people.


Featured Performers

Welcome Reception
Thursday, September 11
6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Hunter Museum of American Art

The drummer, Jo Whitaker, a Chattanooga native, is well versed at playing a variety of musical styles. Whitaker is always in demand as one of Chattanooga's premier drummers and he is adept at serving up his signature funk/swing rhythms.

The bassist, Robert Chuckrow, gained his initial exposure to music through performing with jazz and rock bands while in high school in New York, a city rich in its musical traditions and history. His chosen musical instrument is the guitar but, because of his musical aptitude, has learned to play most stringed instruments and in diverse styles. Chuckrow is a highly regarded performer, and educator in the Chattanooga area.

The group leader and pianist, Danny Sample, was born in Memphis, took up piano at an early age, and was performing R&B and jazz by age 10. Sample began developing his musical conceptions in high school through private studies and analysis of the styles of personal influences such as James Williams, Phineas Newborn, Jr., Oscar Peterson, and McCoy Tyner.

After high school graduation, he enrolled at Christian Brothers College and Memphis State University. In addition to engineering studies, he worked in local clubs with his own band and with saxophonist Herman Green and numerous other Memphis musicians. Also during this period he toured with Isaac Hays, Dionne Warwick, and opened for Grover Washington, Koko Taylor and B. B. King.

Since then, Sample has shared the bandstand in the Chattanooga area and around the country at various clubs, colleges, private engagements and festivals such as the Oregon Mount Hood Jazz Festival, the Hill City Jazz Festival, Birmingham City Stages, Memphis in May, the Riverbend Festival, Nightfall Concert Series, the Miller Pavilion Coffee House Series, Artstravaganza, The Choo Choo Jazz Festival, the Bessie Smith Traditional Jazz Festival and the Chattanooga Homecoming Jazz Festival.


Opening Plenary Session
Friday, September 12
9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

The mission of the Chattanooga Boys Choir is to positively influence and develop the lives of boys by providing a music program of the highest quality which includes education, appreciation, and performance. The Chattanooga Boys Choir, founded in 1954, remains the oldest boychoir in the southeast. The CBC was started by local residents as a choir of some thirty boys from several schools in the Chattanooga area. The organization now includes over 150 boys from across the Chattanooga area and northwest Georgia in five different ensembles. They represent over sixty different public and private schools, and include several home-schooled students.

From performing sacred masterworks in the great cathedrals of Europe to the National Anthem at the White House and major league baseball games, the choir represents the Chattanooga community around the world, designated by the mayor as Chattanooga's "Ambassadors of Goodwill." Since 1964, the CBC Singing Christmas Tree has ushered in the Holiday Season for all of greater Chattanooga. The Concert Choir, the main performing and touring ensemble of the CBC, has presented concerts in 38 states and in 20 countries across five continents.

Leadership Luncheon
Friday, September 12
12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

So many of today's divas are the product of marketing campaigns, such is not the case with Abby Burke. She is not just another "manufactured" vocalist. She has it all - a sensational voice, commanding stage presence, statuesque appearance, and an infectious joy for what she does. Abby's musical tastes range from Cabaret to Jazz, Musical Theater to Pop, Country to Classical. She sings with elegance and sensitivity, earning her the respect of Nashville's arts and music community. Her ability to take a tune familiar to many and leave her special imprint on it, has caused her to become a popular artist performing with her band, and with a variety of other professional performing organizations.

Saturday, September 13
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

The Chattanooga Choral Society for the Preservation of African American Song is a group formed for the purpose of preserving the rich heritage of African American songs with special emphasis on the Negro spirituals. This diverse group is comprised of approximately 45 members with different professional backgrounds including students, professors, professional musicians, and others that all share a love of music and a desire to perform it with an emphasis on quality. CCSPAAS traces its beginning to informal gatherings of former students, church choir members, and friends of the late Edmonia Johnson Simmons. Mrs. Simmons taught music at the Howard High School in Chattanooga for nearly four decades, and served as music director for several area churches.

Concert programs indicate that as early as 1974, the name Chattanooga Choral Society was used in presentations by the group. In 1984, the formal organization of the chorus was announced as a unit of the Chattanooga African American Heritage Museum. The first concert was presented in November 17, 1984, at the First Baptist Church (East Eight Street). The program was an overwhelming success. Since that time, the ensemble has performed bi-annual concerts - fall and spring - and for schools, community service, religious and professional organizations and conferences throughout the state. CCSPAAS is presently under the direction of distinguished conductor, composer, arranger, Dr. Roland Carter; a Howard alumnus and Simmons protege. Carter assumed directorship of the group in 1990, shortly after he returned to Chattanooga to accept the appointment as Head of the Cadek Department of Music and Conservatory at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

Closing Session
Saturday, September 13
4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

The Dismembered Tennesseans have been Chattanooga's favorite bluegrass band for over 60 years. It started in 1945 among a group of McCallie School students intent on playing traditional string music and continued throughout the original members' careers as prominent local businessmen and professionals. The band has brought on new players in recent decades under the leadership of founding fiddler Fletcher Bright, a 2005 recipient of the Folklife Heritage Award from the Tennessee Arts Commission. Known for their humor as well as their musical chops, the group, as Fletcher jokes, "made their mark singing country music for people who don't particularly like country music," and "played for every local civic group in existence, every charity, and most of the conventions in town looking for cheap entertainment." They've in fact won over converts to bluegrass at all levels of Chattanooga society and amassed impressive performance credentials along the way on both the regional and national levels.

Closing Party: Sundown Git Down and Tennessee Catfish Fry
Saturday, September 13
7:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.
First Tennessee Pavilion

From Motown to R&B, 70s and 80s pop and disco to contemporary hits, plus the great classics and standards of yesterday, the six highly experienced musicians and singers of SRO are as versatile as they are talented. SRO is based in Chattanooga and provides a perfect blend of soul and sophistication, which is sure to please everyone. Whether you're crowding the dance floor or sitting back and listening, you'll hear and feel SRO perform each song with style and energy - energy that only comes from having live music at your private party.


Tennessee Artists Showcase

Friday, September 12
4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

Chattanooga Symphony and Opera Wind Quintet: The Chattanooga Symphony began in 1933 as an enterprising group of high school students and adult musicians. Ten years later, Dr. Werner Wolff and his wife Emmy Land Wolff, fixtures in German opera houses, founded the Chattanooga Opera Company with Dorothy Hackett Ward from the University of Chattanooga. In 1985, the two groups merged to become the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera Association, the first and only organization of its kind in the United States.

The Choo Choo Kids are a division of the Musical Theatre major at Chattanooga High School/Center for the Creative Arts and are among the best singers, dancers, and actors within the musical theatre major. They traveled to Gangneung, South Korea, to represent Chattanooga in an International Youth Arts Festival.

Comprising both a school and company, Chattanooga Ballet is recognized as one of Tennessee's leading dance education organizations. Founded in 1973, the school principally focuses on the instruction and training of dancers in classical ballet with offerings in ballet technique, pointe and variations, supplemented with courses in creative movement, pre-ballet, jazz, character, and modern dance technique.

Minton Sparks paints word pictures of the rural South that put you square in the middle of the people and the place she knows like the back of her hand. Fusing music, poetry and her intoxicating gift for storytelling, wildly original spoken word artist Minton Sparks is a raucous, provocative, brilliant one-woman show.


More Performers

Pre-Opening Session
Thursday, September 11
12:15-1:00 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

Born in Ft. Benning, Georgia, in 1956, Lou had plenty of music (Elvis to Travis; Bach to Beatles) around home while growing up. After Lou took up resonator guitar he played on "sidemen" nights at the Station Inn in Nashville and was in the band Hiwassee Ridge, which performed at the 1982 World's Fair in Knoxville. Other bands he's worked with include James Monroe and the Midnight Ramblers, The Dismembered Tennesseans, Cowjazz, and Blue Moon Rising. In 2004, he formed the Wizards of String (now Swing Shift) and released his debut resophonic guitar project, "ResOlution."

Opening Session
Thursday, September 11
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

The members of the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera Brass Quintet include: Brian Roberts (1st trumpet), Hollie Lifshey (2nd trumpet), Gordon James (horn), Doug Warner (trombone) and Derek Fenstermacher (tuba). They are all members of the CSO Orchestra and are some of the finest brass players in the southeast.

Welcome Reception
Thursday, September 11
6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Hunter Museum of American Art

The members of the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera Brass Quintet are all members of the CSO Orchestra and are some of the finest brass players in the southeast. CSO Brass Quintet members include Brian Roberts (1st trumpet), Mike Arndt (2nd trumpet), Gordon James (horn), Doug Warner (trombone) and Derek Fenstermacher (tuba). The CSO is celebrating its 75th anniversary this season and is very proud of the brass section of the orchestra, so well represented within this ensemble.

Original and traditional instrumentals and vocals always with a deep respect for the traditional music of the Appalachians, the Lone Mountain Band's shows are like a mini bluegrass variety show featuring each member of the band in several related styles of selections, including fiddle tunes, bluegrass banjo tunes, clawhammer banjo tunes, guitar tunes, and vocals, all presented with friendly and entertaining commentary. Band members include Bobby Burns, mandolin, fiddle, guitar; Diana Phillips, bass fiddle; Roy Curry, guitar, vocals; and Jim Pankey, banjo, Yo-Yo.

Welcome Reception
Thursday, September 11
6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Hunter Museum of American Art

Jennifer began writing her songs as she learned to speak growing up in the small town of Berea, Kentucky. As an educated performer with a degree in vocal music from Berea College, Jennifer unites her heritage with her classical training to give listeners an experience of the true integrity of Appalachian singing. Her strong, clear soprano voice and sparkling personality continue to mesmerize audiences the world over. Jennifer's training in dance from an early age inspired her to share traditional dance with anyone who was interested - especially young people. She is hailed as one of Kentucky's best dance educators, and has published two manuals for teachers.

Welcome Reception
Thursday, September 11
6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Hunter Museum of American Art

Rebekah Weiler is quickly becoming known as one of the new faces to watch among old time banjo players. In 2007, she made history by becoming the first woman in the 36-year-history of the Old Time Fiddler's Jamboree in Smithville, Tennessee, to win the Old Time Banjo championship. Rebekah won the Old Time Banjo title at the 40th annual Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers Convention at Athens, Alabama, in 2006, and the 50th annual West Tennessee title.

John Boulware's musical heritage stretches back for generations. His great-great-grandfather Will McWatters and his grandfather Brice Bagley both played fiddle. John took up the instrument at age 12, and has since learned a wide variety of styles ranging from Celtic to bluegrass to old time. He was the 2006 overall State Fiddle Champion for Tennessee.

Roby Cogswell plays rhythm guitar and sings some with the Nashville-based band The Swing Bandits. In his day job, he's a folklorist, having worked as the director of that program for the Tennessee Arts Commission for 23 years.

Breakfast Buffet
Saturday, September 13
7:30 a.m.
Chattanooga Convention Center

Closing Party: Sundown Git Down and Tennessee Catfish Fry
Saturday, September 13
6:30 p.m.
First Tennessee Pavilion

Tennessee dancer Thomas Maupin, who describes himself as a "self-taught buckdancer with a flatfoot style," has hoofed his way to numerous state and national prizes. In recent years his snappy flatfooting has thrilled crowds at events such as the Museum of Appalachia's Fall Homecoming in Tennessee and the Appalachian String Band Festival in West Virginia.

Closing Party: Sundown Git Down and Tennessee Catfish Fry
Saturday, September 13
6:30 p.m.
First Tennessee Pavilion

The Fiery Gizzard String Band was formed in 1998 as a dance band, playing old time square-dance tunes. Tim Higgins (banjo), Charles Higgins (guitar) and Bob Townsend (fiddle) have amassed a repertoire of old-time tunes, many of which are local tunes not often heard outside of the Cumberland Plateau / Sequatchie Valley area or played by any other musicians living today. The Fiery Gizzard String Band has played many festivals and was the house band for the "Mountain Goat," a local radio show of music and skits from 2001 until 2005.


Tentative Meeting Agenda At-A-Glance

Wednesday, September 10
Optional Jack Daniels Country Adventure (day trip)* 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Special Preconference Workshop*
      What Do the Numbers Tell You? Learning to Look at Financial Statements
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Optional Peer Sessions (times may vary)
      Arts Education 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
      Deputy Directors 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
      Accessibility 1:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
      Others tbd
NASAA Executive Committee Meeting 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
NASAA Board Lunch 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
NASAA Board Meeting (all members welcome) 1:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Thursday, September 11
National Standard Training 8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
NASAA Board Meeting (all members welcome) 8:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Optional Chattanooga Adventures 8:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Optional Peer Sessions (times may vary)
      Arts Education 8:30 a.m. - 11:00a.m.
      Accessibility 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
      Others tbd
Newcomer Orientation Luncheon 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Opening Session and Roll Call - Governor Phil
      Bredesen (invited) and First Lady Andrea Conte,
      Dolly Parton, Fisk Jubilee Singers
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Peer Sessions 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Welcome Reception at the Hunter Museum of American Art 6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Friday, September 12
Breakfast Buffet 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.
Plenary with NASAA CEO Jonathan Katz and NEA Chair Dana Gioia 9:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Briefing Sessions 10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Leadership Luncheon 12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Workshops 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Artist Showcase 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Dinner on Your Own - Explore Downtown and the Bluff View Art District Evening
Saturday, September 13
Breakfast Buffet 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.
Peer Sessions 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Briefing Sessions 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Networking Luncheon 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Workshops 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Closing Session 4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.
Closing Party - Sundown Git Down and Tennessee
      Catfish Fry at the First Tennessee Pavilion
7:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.

* A separate registration fee applies. Refer to the registration form for details.

To reserve your space or for additional information, contact Angela Han.


Assembly 2008 will feature a full complement of peer group gatherings. In combination with a wide array of topical sessions, peer group meetings give every state arts agency staffer and volunteer the chance to network, share ideas and exchange perspectives. Bring a full team of staff and council members to take advantage of this unique opportunity. Be on the lookout for team registration rate details over the summer.

Peer Group Agenda Coordinators
Executive Directors Peggy Baggett (VA)
John Bracey (MI)
Anita Walker (MA)
Kelly Barsdate (NASAA)
Chairs and Council Members Laura Smith (NASAA)
Deputy/Assistant Directors Jamie Dempsey (AZ)
Lionell Thomas (DC)
Accessibility (504/ADA) Paula Terry (NEA)
Arts Education Sherilyn Brown (RI)
Kim Leavitt (TN)
Capital/Facilities Don Blancett (FL)
Communications/Public Information Greg Liakos (MA)
Community Development Leigh Patton (TN)
Folk/Traditional Arts Roby Cogswell (TN)
Grants and Fiscal Officers Angela Han (NASAA)
Dia Foley (OH)
Individual Artists Barbara Robinson (ID)
Presenting/Touring Vicki Vitiello (NC)
Jess Anthony (AR)

Peer groups will gather during the conference on Thursday, September 11 from 3:00 to 5:00 pm, and again on Saturday, September 13 from 8:30 to 10:30 am.

The Accessibility (504/ADA) group plans to meet as a preconference only: from 1:00 to 5:30 pm on Wednesday, September 10 and from 8:30 to noon on Thursday, September 11. Arts Education Managers' preconference events will commence with a newcomers' session on Tuesday, September 9, followed by a welcome dinner that evening and preconference activities all day Wednesday and Thursday morning.

Each time NASAA gathers as a full Assembly, all peer groups that want to meet are welcome to do so. Any staff group that can demonstrate the ability to organize itself and attract participants is welcome as long as space is available. If your group would like to meet and is not listed above, please contact Kelly Barsdate ( for more information.

Peer groups are all volunteer. This means that they elect to gather, organize their own agendas, and lead their own sessions. This not only makes it operationally feasible for NASAA to offer many groups, but it also ensures that the agendas stay highly responsive to the current interests and needs of the field. NASAA urges peer session organizers to consult with their colleagues around the country for agenda input. If you have suggestions to offer, please contact your group coordinator(s).

Peer group meetings are one important component of a larger conference agenda which includes topical discussions, plenary sessions, arts events and social activities. Be sure to participate fully in the complete array of topical sessions and other mixed-group gatherings. All staff groups have much to learn from - and to contribute to - the conference proceedings as a whole.

Peer groups meet during "Assembly" years - years when the complete NASAA community gathers for a large meeting. Chattanooga is a full Assembly. During "Leadership Institute" years, meetings are smaller in scale -involving a smaller complement of SAA staff and council members - and typically focus on agency governance, leadership and policy. In addition to the meeting opportunities available in any given year, NASAA provides numerous avenues (such as listservs, conference calls and Web seminars) for you to connect with your colleagues in between convenings.

Anyone! All NASAA sessions are open to all conference participants as well as to occasional outside observers. Please help us to maintain this spirit of welcome inclusion.

As state arts agency roles diversify, many staffers are wearing multiple hats. Agencies should plan to bring as large of a team as possible in order to cover the maximum number of sessions. Based on the agendas (which will be published in late summer), you may also elect to split your time among different sessions.

NASAA itself does not provide any direct travel funding or registration offsets for the conference, but team rates are offered to make maximum staff and council participation more affordable. The National Endowment for the Arts has generously supported Arts Education gatherings at most NASAA conferences. The Folk Arts peer group has also received NEA support in some years. State arts agencies are encouraged to take advantage of these travel funds —which NASAA manages through cooperative agreements with the Endowment—during years when they are available.

See you in Chattanooga!!

PRESENTERS (Check back for updates)

An internationally renowned superstar, the iconic and irrepressible Dolly Parton has contributed countless treasures to the world of music entertainment, penning classic songs such as "Jolene," "Coat of Many Colors," and her mega-hit "I Will Always Love You." With 1977's crossover hit "Here You Come Again," she successfully erased the line between country and pop music without noticeably altering either her music or her image.

"I've always been a writer. My songs are the door to every dream I've ever had and every success I've ever achieved," says Dolly Parton of her incredible career, which has spanned nearly five decades and is showing no signs of slowing down.

A recipient of the 2005 National Medal of Arts, Dolly began the Dollywood Foundation in 1988 to inspire children in her home community to dream more, learn more, do more and care more. Currently the foundation funds the Dolly Parton Imagination Library across America and in Canada, by giving every preschool child a book each month from the time he or she is born until the child reaches kindergarten. With the help of local sponsors, this program has expanded to over 800 communities in 41 states and, in 2007, gave away over 5 million books.

Chris Jordan is a Seattle-based photographic artist who first became known for his large-scale color photographs of the detritus of American consumer culture in a series entitled Intolerable Beauty: Portraits of American Mass Consumption. His more recent project, Running the Numbers: An American Self-Portrait, has established Chris as an internationally acclaimed artist and spokesperson for social change.

His images have been featured in hundreds of magazines, newspapers, television features, documentary films, books, school curriculums and blogs around the globe. He has been invited to exhibit his work in art museums, festivals and public venues in the U.S., Asia, Europe and South America. He is in great demand as a speaker in the U.S. and internationally.

In April 2008, Jordan traveled around the world with National Geographic as an international eco-ambassador for Earth Day 2008. In November, he will attend the World Economic Forum summit in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

His work recently won the prestigious Green Leaf Award from the United Nations Environmental Programme, presented at the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo, Norway. This year the Running the Numbers series was one of three finalists for the international Darmstadt Photographic Prize in Germany, and a finalist for the new Green Prix Award in the U.S. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the New American Dream Foundation.

Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen (invited) and his wife, First Lady Andrea Conte, are active members in the community, locally and statewide. He is a founding member of Nashville's Table, a nonprofit group that collects discarded food from local restaurants and distributes it to the city's homeless population. He also founded the Land Trust for Tennessee, a nonprofit organization that works statewide to preserve open space and traditional family farms. Conte is founder and president of You Have the Power - Know How to Use It, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to raising awareness about crime and justice issues.


Since becoming Chairman of the NEA, Dana Gioia has succeeded in garnering enthusiastic bi-partisan support in the United States Congress for the mission of the Arts Endowment, as well as in strengthening the national consensus in favor of public funding for the arts and arts education. Gioia's creation of a series of NEA National Initiatives combined with a wider distribution of direct grants to reach previously underserved communities making the agency truly national in scope. Through programs such as Shakespeare in American Communities, Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, NEA Jazz Masters, American Masterpieces, and Poetry Out Loud, the Arts Endowment has successfully reached millions of Americans in all corners of the country.

Mary Miss, an artist known for her environmentally - based artwork, lives in New York City. For more than four decades Miss' work has examined the intersection of sculpture, architecture, environmental engineering and installation art in projects and proposals ranging from riverfront walkways to infrastructure sites. Grounded in the context of place, Miss creates installations that allow the visitor to become aware of the site's history, its ecology, and surrounding environment. Permanent installations include the 'South Cove' in Battery Park, 'Framing Union Square' at the Union Square Subway Station in New York City and a wetlands preservation project in Des Moines, Iowa. She was a lead designer on the collaborative team that won the competition to design the 1300 acre Orange County Great Park currently being built in Irvine, California.

In the last year Miss' work has included an installation that focuses on the water resources in Beijing for the Olympic Park there, a city-wide three dimensional mapping project that delineated the 500 year flood plain level in Boulder, Colorado, and a temporary work at a sixteenth century site in a city park in Delhi that will be part of the exhibition '49 Degrees: Public Art and Ecology.' At the North Carolina Museum of Art she is completing plans for a permanent project that takes water, its presence and movement on a site as its subject. It will include walkways, earthen terraces, plantings, and a restored stream to demonstrate the functions and characteristics of watershed and wetland processes in the region.


One of the nation's most respected broadcast journalists, John Seigenthaler was the anchor of the top-rated NBC Nightly News Weekend Edition from 1999 to 2007 and host of MSNBC Investigates, an hour-long documentary series. He served as a special correspondent for NBC News, anchor for MSNBC and The News on CNBC, and substitute anchor for NBC Nightly News, Dateline NBC, TODAY, and Meet the Press. He also anchored the Court TV program Under Investigation and a special on the Titanic for the Discovery Channel.

Called "the thinking man's broadcaster" by The New York Daily News, Seigenthaler began his television news career in 1980 as an anchor, reporter and producer for NBC affiliate WSMV-TV, Nashville. In 1996, NBC tapped him to be co-anchor of Morning Line, a weekday morning news broadcast on its new cable news channel, MSNBC, which launched his 11-year career with the network.

During his tenure with NBC, Seigenthaler covered a wide range of national and international stories including U.S. presidential campaigns and conventions, the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Hurricane Katrina, the tsunami in Sri Lanka and the Atlanta Olympics.

He has won numerous awards and distinctions for his work, including the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for a series of stories on the civil rights movement, National Headliner and Iris awards for coverage of a Tennessee prison riot, an American Bar Association award for a documentary on the death penalty, and two regional Emmys.

Seigenthaler is CEO of SPR New York, specializing in crisis and reputation management, media strategy and media training. A graduate of Duke University with a B.S. in Public Policy Studies, he is based in New York.


Nestled along the banks of the Tennessee River, Chattanooga provides a vibrant conference setting. Assembly 2008 participants will enjoy an infusion of public art, sweeping green spaces, parks and walkways along the river, and a tribute to the community's Cherokee heritage - all part of the city's $120 million 21st Century Waterfront Plan. Chattanooga offers a wealth of cultural resources and attractions including:

  • The Hunter Museum of American Art—the southeast's largest collection of American art
  • A newly renovated Creative Discovery Museum
  • The Bluff View Art District, with distinctive shops, restaurants, B&Bs and spectacular scenic views
  • The new Holmberg Pedestrian Bridge linking First Street with the entrance to the Hunter Museum of American Art
  • The Passage, which is the nation's largest public art project celebrating Cherokee history and culture


The early weeks of autumn in Chattanooga make for a great atmosphere for visitors, with highs dropping from the hot summer months to 83 degrees F. average and lows around 62 degrees F. However, precipitation averages increase steadily through the month of September, so you'll want to be prepared for rain and drizzle.

Chattanooga street map

Photos courtesy of Chattanooga Area Convention & Visitors Bureau


Chattanooga street map

Wednesday, September 10

Optional Day Trip: Jack Daniel's® Country Adventure

Spend a day in Lynchburg, the charming little town that supplied Mr. Jack the crystal clear spring water needed to brew his world famous whiskey. Inhale the aroma of whiskey being made on the distillery tour and then find a seat at the mid-day dinner table where home-cooked, southern style food is served family style at Miss Mary Bobo's Boarding House Restaurant (listed on the National Register of Historic Places). The adventure concludes around the quaint Lynchburg Town Square providing shopping to satisfy any spirit.
Please note that this tour is not fully accessible to people with disabilities.

($50 U.S. per person or guest; transportation included.)
Tour departs from the Chattanooga Marriott at 8:00 a.m. and returns by 4:30 p.m.
(Reservations for this tour must be made no later than August 8.)

For more information, visit

Thursday, September 11

This tour has been canceled.

Chattanooga Adventure I: H20 and Art Aboard the Chattanooga Ducks

All board these former U.S. Army amphibious vehicles where they paddle under four bridges and circle the McClellan Island bird sanctuary. With land in sight, the Ducks make land and tour the public art that was an integral part of the redevelopment of downtown Chattanooga.
Please note that this tour is not fully accessible to people with disabilities.

($15 U.S. per person or guest; transportation included.)
Tour departs from the Chattanooga Marriott at 9:00 a.m. and returns at 11:30 a.m.

For more information, visit

Chattanooga Adventure II: Lookout Mountain Journey

Ride the world's steepest Incline Railway of Lookout Mountain and motor to Point Park for breathtaking vistas of the Chattanooga area. Civil War enthusiasts will especially enjoy Point Park, site of the "Battle above the Clouds".
Please note that this tour is not fully accessible to people with disabilities.

($25 U.S. per person or guest; transportation included.)
Tour departs from the Chattanooga Marriott at 8:00 a.m. and returns at 11:00 a.m.

For more information, visit

Chattanooga Adventure III: Chattanooga, Great City by Nature

Chattanooga and the Tennessee Aquarium's Newest Attractions, the River Gorge Explorer, is a state-of-the-art 65-foot catamaran that carries 70 passengers from the Chattanooga Pier deep into the Tennessee River Gorge. The gorge is a two thousand foot canyon about 27 miles long and three-quarters of a mile wide and home to more than 1,000 varieties of botanical life, 184 species of birds, 63 species of mammals, and 193 species of butterflies.
Please note that this tour is not fully accessible to people with disabilities.

($35 U.S. per adult or guest; transportation included.)
Tour departs from the Chattanooga Marriott at 9:30 a.m. for the Aquarium. The boat leaves at 10:00 a.m. and the excursion lasts 90 minutes, plus another 10 minutes for loading and disembarking. Refreshments and restrooms are available on the boat. The tour returns to the Chattanooga Marriott by 12:00 noon.
(Reservations for this tour must be made no later than August 8.)

For more information, visit

Chattanooga Adventure IV: Public Art Experience—Walk This Way, Please!

Join your NASAA friends for a guided tour throughout the downtown area where you will be amazed at the quality and variety of public art that was central to the redevelopment of the area and has defined Chattanooga as a "community of cultural." The excursion will include the Chattanooga Pier, the Passage, the Holmberg Glass Bridge, and the ever-changing monumental pieces of public art.
Please note that this tour is not fully accessible to people with disabilities.

(No fee required)
Meet in the lobby of the Chattanooga Marriott at 10:00 a.m. for an hour to an hour and a half tour.

For more information, visit

Reservations are required for all tours and space is limited, so please register for the events that you are planning to attend. Guests are welcome to attend (where indicated) with advance reservations and fees, if applicable.

Please note: Some tours may require a minimum number of attendees to take place. If fewer than the minimum number registers for the tour, the tour will be cancelled and you will be notified in advance.

If you have any questions or need more details regarding these optional tours, please contact Sharon Gee at NASAA at 202-347-6352, ext. 112 or at

Photos courtesy of Chattanooga Area Convention & Visitors Bureau


Assembly 2008 will feature an outstanding lineup of peer meetings as well as topical breakout sessions. Back by popular demand, morning "briefing sessions" will keep you up-to-date on the latest research and current trends. Afternoon "workshops" will provide the chance for more extended discussion of selected policy and practice issues facing state arts agencies.




What Do The Numbers Tell You: Learning to Look at Financial Statements

National Standard Training


Wednesday, September 10, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
The Chattanoogan Hotel - Roberts Room

What Do the Numbers Tell You?
Learning to Look at Financial Statements

Just like assessments of artistic quality, management practices and community outreach, an assessment of financial strength is crucial in evaluating the health of an arts organization. What are useful indicators of financial strength? Is it possible to identify struggling organizations before they become too unstable? What information should state arts agency panelists and staff be examining to inform grant making and policy?

In this workshop, participants will gain hands-on practice in examining financial statements, including balance sheets and operating budgets. The workshop will help participants use these materials to understand key issues, including:

  • What types of information can signal financial strength or vulnerability
  • How asset-rich organizations can still fail to pay their bills
  • Why revenue diversification and stabilization are important to assess
  • How income and expense ratios can correlate to an organization's mission
  • When deficits might be a good thing
  • And more!

In addition to reviewing some financial fundamentals, participants in this workshop will also have the opportunity to reflect on why they collect financial information, who utilizes it and what purposes it can serve.

Presenters and Facilitators
Eric Fraint, Founder and President, Your Part-Time Controller Charlie McDermott, Deputy Director, Massachusetts Cultural Council Mollie Lakin-Hayes, Deputy Director, Southern Arts Federation

Designed specifically for state arts agencies and other arts grant-makers, this special preconference is a full-day workshop. Space is limited, so register soon!

Wednesday, September 10th
The Chattanoogan Hotel (one block and a half from the Chattanooga Marriott)
9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. (Lunch on your own)

Financial Workshop for Conference Attendees$125 U.S. per person
Financial Workshop Only (No other conference activities included) $175 U.S. per person

Interested in learning even more about nonprofit financials? Then be sure to check out our related sessions during Assembly 2008. The briefing session on "Assessing the Fiscal Health of Grantees" will feature the partnership between the Nonprofit Finance Fund and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. "When Grantees Hit Financial Hardship" workshop will provide a forum to discuss the state arts agency role in dealing with fiscally unhealthy organizations.


Thursday, September 11, 2008 (8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.) (no additional fee)
The Chattanoogan Hotel - Roberts Room (with continental breakfast)

National Standard Training

This session will provide a brief orientation to the National Standard. Included will be a review of key National Standard codes and definitions, as well as an introduction to the Final Descriptive Report (FDR) requirements of the National Endowment for the Arts. This session will be helpful for new grants and fiscal officers, as well as for other staffers that collect National Standard information from grantees. It also will be a useful "refresher course" for veterans who oversee grant programs or who need to train new colleagues. Space is limited, please RSVP to Angela Han after registering for the conference.



Friday, September 12 (10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.)

Collaborative Economic Revitalization: The Chattanooga Story
Learn how citizens, cultural institutions, philanthropy, businesses and elected officials all have joined hands to foster an economic and civic renaissance in our host community.

Engaging Grantees in Arts Advocacy
Grantees are among state arts agencies' most powerful allies and advocates. This workshop will help participants to share ideas about how to help them become champions for public arts support.

Artist Space Development: Creating a Supportive Climate for Artists, Part I
The Urban Institute will share key findings from a recent study of how communities across the nation have developed affordable housing and workspace for artists.

Assessing Grantees' Fiscal Health
Featuring New Jersey's partnership with the Nonprofit Finance Fund, this briefing will demonstrate how state arts agencies can monitor the financial condition of grantees and use that information to inform policy and program choices.

Information with Impact
Why are policy leaders sometimes skeptical about economic impact? Research What kind of information has maximum impact? New research, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, sheds light on these questions.

Arts Learning: A Critical Factor in Arts Participation
Researchers from the RAND Corporation will highlight critical gaps in the infrastructure that supports arts learning and arts participation in America. This research is sponsored by The Wallace Foundation.

Regional Arts Organizations: How They Connect with State Arts Agencies
Learn about the ongoing programs, special initiatives and grant support available from the nation's regional arts organizations.

Saturday, September 13 (11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.)

Legislative Committees for the Arts
Legislative committees can provide a powerful focal point for arts advocacy. Attend this briefing to learn more about the Tennessee Arts Caucus and how it has fostered increased state support for the arts in Tennessee.

Creative Communities: Creating a Supportive Climate for Artists, Part II
Together, state arts agencies and Leveraging Investments in Creativity (LINC) are improving living and working conditions for artists and heightening public recognition of their contributions to society. Attend this session to lean how.

Older Adults Matter to State Arts Agencies
Gain an overview of current trends in the rapidly-expanding field of creative aging and learn how your agency can foster active arts participation by older adults.

Art and Religion: The Devil Is in the Details
A former State General Counsel from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will explore the policy issues that state arts agencies may encounter when working with religious organizations.

In Case of Emergency . . .
Emergencies occur in every state. This session will help state arts agencies learn how to respond and be a resource for their constituents.

Value Plus Schools
This briefing will share the success strategies of the $2 million Value Plus Schools initiative, which received a highly competitive Arts Model Dissemination Grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

Strengthening Arts Participation in Rural Areas
How can rural organizations encourage arts participation and community engagement? How can state arts agencies help? This session will show how one state, Montana, met these challenges.



Friday, September 12 and Saturday, September 13 (2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.)
Some sessions repeat on both days, while others are offered on only one date. Refer to each session for specifics.

Intrinsic Benefits: Understanding and Assessing Transformative Arts Experiences
Alan Brown - one of the nation's leading arts participation researchers and market consultants - will demonstrate how the intrinsic benefits of arts participation can be understood and measured. (Friday and Saturday)

Engaging Art: What Is the Public Sector Role?
Steven Tepper will lead a discussion of how arts participation in America is changing and how it will affect state arts agencies in the future. (Friday and Saturday)

Introduction to Public Value
This session will orient state arts agency council members and staff to key public value concepts. Newcomers to the field are especially encouraged to attend. (Friday only)

Making the Most of Focus Groups
This session will help state arts agencies learn when, how - and how not!- to use focus groups to secure meaningful insight when planning or evaluating programs. (Friday only)

Drawing on practices inside and outside of the arts sector, this session will show how cultural advocates can harness the power of technology to strengthen their advocacy practices. (Friday only)

NEA Funding Workshop
This special workshop for the Tennessee Arts Community will review funding available through the grant programs of the National Endowment for the Arts. (Friday only)

When Grantees Hit Financial Hardship
This discussion will explore whether and how state arts should respond when grantee organizations experience acute financial problems. (Saturday only)

Achieving a "Quantum Leap": Positioning Your Agency for Resource Growth
Why plan for a big resource increase when state budgets will be tight in the foreseeable future? Led by Jonathan Katz, this session will explore how state arts agencies can strategically position themselves to achieve new levels of support. (Saturday only)

Helping Artists Find and Keep Health Care
This session will train participants to help artists find information about affordable medical insurance and health care using the Health Insurance Resource Center (HIRC), a new resource created by the Actors Fund and Leveraging Investments in Creativity. (Saturday only)


Thursday, September 11

Welcome to Chattanooga Celebration

The Hunter Museum of American Art opens its doors, its galleries, its breathtaking views, and invites NASAA to an evening of celebration, Tennessee Style!

Boasting one of the southeast's finest collections of American art, the Hunter is the centerpiece of the Bluff View Art District. Spend the entire evening listening to Tennessee music, savoring southern delicacies, browsing area galleries and touring the Houston Museum of Decorative Art, two sculpture gardens, and play bocce ball. And be sure to take home something truly of Tennessee from the Terrace Craft Fair. (Dress is business casual.)
(No additional fee for conference registrants. Guests $30 U.S. per person)

Chattanooga street map

Saturday, September 13

Assembly 2008 Sundown Git Down and Tennessee Catfish Fry at the First Tennessee Pavilion

Just down the street from the Chattanooga Convention Center the Fiery Gizzard String Band is tuning up, the Flatfoot Dancers are already stretching, and grease is bubbling hot, ready for the catfish and hushpuppies to jump in. You may want to just sit back and enjoy the fixin's, the drinkin', or you may want to join in the flatfootin'. It's your choice, but the evening is just beginning and a NASAA closing party is not complete without a great rock band, a dance floor, and a well-stocked bar. We got'em and a whole lot more! (Dress is casual.)
(No additional fee for conference registrants. Guests $30 U.S. per person)

Photos courtesy of Chattanooga Area Convention & Visitors Bureau



The Chattanoogan Hotel
1201 South Broad Street
Chattanooga, Tennessee 37402
Phone: 423-756-3400
Fax: 423-756-3404

Reservation Procedures for The Chattanoogan Hotel
National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA)
Discounted Group Room Rates:

$129.00* for a single/double/triple/quad guest room (one King bed or two full beds).

* Hotel room rates are subject to applicable state and local taxes (currently 17.25%) in effect at the time of check in.

Reservations can be made over the telephone by contacting The Chattanoogan Hotel reservations department at 800-619-0018 or online with a credit card guarantee no later than August 15, 2008, or until the NASAA contracted group room block is full. In the event this happens prior to our group reservation cut-off date of August 15, NASAA will identify an overflow hotel for further room reservations.

To make online reservations, please visit their website at

Click on the link 'Book Online' at the bottom of the page. Enter the number of rooms, guests, and dates that you would like to stay. Then next to 'Group ID' please enter the number 239562 to obtain the discounted group rates for NASAA. If you have further questions regarding your reservation, please contact the hotel reservations department at 800-619-0018.

All reservations must be guaranteed with a major credit card. Individual reservations must be cancelled at least twenty-four (24) hours prior to date of arrival. If a cancellation is not made at least 24 hours prior to date of arrival, the credit card will be charged for one night's room charge and tax.

NASAA's group room rate of $129 per room per night is available three (3) days prior and (3) days after the conference dates, based on availability. Check-in is 4:00 pm; Check-out is 12:00 p.m. (noon).

Requests for early check-ins will be honored based on availability.

Chattanooga street map

Chattanooga Marriott at the Convention Center
Two Carter Plaza
Chattanooga, Tennessee 37402
Phone: 423-756-0002
Fax: 423-308-1010
Toll-free: 800-841-1674

Hotel Highlights

  • Hotel direction from the Chattanooga (CHA) Metropolitan Airport is approximately 11.0 miles SW
  • Located downtown in the business district
  • Connected to the Chattanooga Convention Center
  • This hotel is non-smoking
  • On the downtown free electric shuttle route

National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA)
Discounted Group Room Rates:

Government Employee Rate (though limited availability): $85 single* or $95 double*
Deluxe Room Rate (either one King or two doubles): $119 single* or $119 double*

* Hotel room rates are subject to applicable state and local taxes (currently 17.25%) in effect
at the time of check in.

Reservation Procedures for the Chattanooga Marriott at the Convention Center
Reservations can be made by contacting Marriott at 1-800-841-1674. Please be sure to mention the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies or NASAA when making your reservation in order to qualify for the discounted group room rates.

If you prefer to make your reservations online, visit and enter our NASAA group code (for Government Employee Rooms the code is SAGSAGA; for the Deluxe Rooms the code is NASNASA) in order to qualify for the discounted group room rates.

Reservations will be accepted no later than Friday, August 15, 2008 or until which time the NASAA contracted group room block is full. In the event this happens prior to our group reservation cut-off date of August 15, NASAA will identify an overflow hotel for further room reservations.

All reservations must be guaranteed with a major credit card. Individual reservations must be cancelled at least seventy-two (72) hours prior to arrival date. If a cancellation is not made at least 72 hours in advance, the credit card will be charged for one night's room and tax.

NASAA's group room rate will apply three (3) days prior and (3) days after the conference dates, based on availability.

Check-in is 3:00 pm; Check-out is 12:00 p.m. (noon). Requests for early check-ins will be honored based on availability.



NASAA generally offers meeting attendees prearranged group discounts with one official airline, however, due to the fluctuations within the airline industry and the variety of low fares that are available on the Internet, we encourage you to search for competitive fares and select the one that best fits your budget.

The Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport has a variety of airlines that service Chattanooga.

Non-Stop Cities include:

  • Atlanta, GA
  • Charlotte, NC
  • Chicago, IL
  • Cincinnati, OH
  • Dallas, TX
  • Ft Lauderdale, FL
  • Houston, TX
  • Memphis, TN
  • Orlando, FL
  • Tampa Bay, FL
  • Washington, DC
  • Detroit, MI

For additional airline information visit

Ground transportation

NASAA ASSEMBLY 2008 conference attendees who book reservations at least twenty-four (24) hours in advance with All American Taxi will receive a discounted, flat rate fare of $10 each way, per person, excluding gratuity, between the Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport and the Chattanooga Marriott in downtown.

We strongly encourage you to book well in advance of your arrival with All American Taxi by calling toll-free 888-514-TAXI (8294) or 423-645-6387. Visit for more details about the reservation process. Please be sure to mention the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies or NASAA when making your reservation in order to qualify for the discounted fare.

Car Rentals

Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport's car rental facility is located at the baggage claim. To make rental car reservations, contact the following:

Avis: 423-855-2232
Budget: 423-855-2224
Enterprise: 423-894-8785
Hertz: 423-855-8131
National: 423-855-2229


Parking at the Chattanooga Marriott at the Convention Center is an underground parking facility and is available to both overnight and day guests. Overnight guests may self-park at a rate of $9.00 per night or valet park for $11.00 per night.

Day guests may park hourly. Hourly rates are as follows:

  • 0-2 hours - $2.00 plus tax
  • 2-4 hours - $4.00 plus tax
  • 4 hours plus - $6.00 plus tax



Sponsor logos


Tennessee Arts Commission


Tennessee Arts Commission
Tennessee General Assembly
National Endowment for the Arts
The Benwood Foundation
The Lyndhurst Foundation
Thomas S. Kenan Institute for the Arts
The Wallace Foundation
Tennessee Arts Foundation


Allied Arts of Greater Chattanooga
Chattanooga Area Convention and Visitors Bureau
Chattanooga Bakery
Chattanooga Theatre
City of Chattanooga
First Tennessee Pavilion
Hunter Museum of American Art
Jack Daniel's® Distillery
McKee Food Corporation
Southern Arts Federation
United Way of Greater Chattanooga
Susan Brock
Gary Chazen
Hedy Davenport
Ellen Hays