Fund for the Arts Gets $8.8 Million of $10 Million Goal

by ekramer on June 30, 2009

The Louisville Fund for the Arts announced the results of its annual fundraising campaign today. WFPL’s Elizabeth Kramer has more.

The Fund for the Arts raised $8.8 million this year — falling short of its $10 million goal set before the economic crisis deepened last September. Much of the money raised will go to support its 14 member organizations.

The organization’s president and CEO, Allan Cowen, says the economy was behind the shortfall. He says workplace fundraising dropped and corporate giving fell about $500,000.

“The losses we had to this year had to do with structural changes in some of the businesses as opposed to people cutting back their budgets so much,” Cowen says. “But we met with a company who’d been extraordinarily generous for the past ten years, and they weren’t in a position to do as much this year. Well, how can you complain?”

Cowen says recent annual campaigns have worked to raise the money need to get members’ budget sheets in order. Now that the largest members are in the black, the Fund for the Arts is looking to help Stage One and Music Theatre Louisville climb out of debt in the coming year.

“We only have a couple chunks of— only two organizations that have any operating debt remaining,” he says. “And that’s probably a multimillion dollar change in existence.”

Cowen says the Fund distributed $1 million to member organizations last year to help stabilize their budgets and looks to make $800,000 in grants this year.

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