Arts And The Election

Yes, the third presidential debate was held last night. No, we aren’t discussing it here. Instead, let’s take a moment to examine American’s for the Arts’ (A4A) ArtsVote2016 resource center.

Adaptistration People 187Once you get past the user interface, the A4A’s resource is an entirely useful resource when it comes to determining which candidates you opt to support based on their record and position related to the arts and arts education.

As a bonus, if you prefer having zero interactive and dynamic web based content with an intuitive user navigation and instead prefer lots and lots of downloadable pdf files stuffed with squint-inducing font sizes, you are going to love this site.

But I digress.

One of the cornerstones of the site is the Congressional Report Card, which doesn’t really function as a report card…because there are no letter grades…but there are loads of instructions on how to read and interpret the data. Power through it, it’s worth your while because there is a good bit of useful data waiting for you to find it.

You can also find position papers on arts policies and personal histories with the arts from Democratic and Republican presidential candidates.

Even though the content isn’t user friendly, it is still the best option available so I encourage everyone to take the time to review the material and share with friends and colleagues.

And most importantly, go vote.

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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