Updated NASAA Member Directory

Friday, July 8, 2011

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NationalAssembly of State Arts Agencies

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State to State

Showcasing State Arts Agency Ingenuity



Cultural Districts Certification Program
Kentucky Arts Council

The Kentucky Arts Council (KAC) has launched a new Cultural Districts Certification Program. Announced by Governor Steve Beshear, state certification will recognize and support local districts that use the arts to promote civic and economic revitalization. The program will build on qualities that make Kentucky communities unique, including their abundant cultural assets, their historic resources, a strong agricultural heritage and "pride in place."

KAC will administer the process using a range of certification criteria that will set statewide standards for district development. Extensive training and technical assistance services will be provided to help approved districts advance their plans, market their districts, develop further resources and incorporate arts education components into their activities. A technical assistance team coordinated by KAC will work with each district to facilitate its efforts and develop specific benchmarks for measuring success. An evaluation team will assess all districts once each year.

For more details, review the new program's guidelines and contact KAC Program Branch Manager Chris Cathers.



Idaho Meth Project, Paint the State
Idaho Commission on the Arts


Brock and Zack Bartlett of Twin Falls, Idaho

Methamphetamine abuse—and its related social, health and law enforcement costs—is a serious challenge in Idaho. The Idaho Commission on the Arts (ICA) collaborated with the Idaho Meth Project last year to help the state combat this problem. As part of an aggressive statewide campaign to raise youth awareness about the dangers of meth, the Idaho Meth Project launched a public art project called Paint the State. Modeled after a project undertaken by the Montana Meth Project, Paint the State was a contest inviting teenagers to create art based on the theme "Not Even Once." First Lady Lori Otter facilitated connections with ICA, which used its statewide network of regional public art advisors to reach out to local communities, design the contest adjudication process, select judges and recruit photographers to document the works. More than 1,000 students participated to create 348 public artworks in all of Idaho's 44 counties. Private companies funded cash prizes, awarded on the county and state level, which minimized direct costs to ICA. The final awards ceremony took place at the state capitol with the governor and first lady in attendance. The artworks continue to be promoted via an on-line gallery.

The Meth Project is a multistate initiative (first launched in Montana and now active in Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois and Wyoming as well as Idaho), so collaboration opportunities may exist for other state arts agencies, too. To learn more about the Idaho partnership, contact ICA Executive Director Michael Faison.