Effects of the recession have become apparent at the statewide advocacy group Arts Kentucky. WFPL’s Elizabeth Kramer has more.
This week, Arts Kentucky announced it will eliminate its executive director position at the end of this month.
The organization’s board president, Susan McNeese Lynch, says the move comes after seeing reduced funding, including state support from the Kentucky Arts Council. McNeese Lynch says it has plans for continuing operations.
“We’re now looking at supporting the work that we do — which is very specific — with perhaps a number of consultants,” she says. “We’ve got some really good depth and breath of consultants statewide who can provide the kind of services and expertise we’re looking for.”
Founded in 1995, Arts Kentucky has had a full-time executive director for the past decade. The person has overseen state and national lobbying efforts and management training for artists and arts groups. In recent years, the organization also has fostered networks to sustain arts education in Kentucky.
“We’ve also gotten deeply involved in arts education,” McNeese Lynch says. “And we’re working to make sure that we keep that particular segment in people’s minds and that they understand the implications of that.”
McNeese Lynch says the group will reinstate the position once it’s on better financial footing.
“Our goal is to get back to having staff,,” she says. “But it’s just not something we feel comfortable with doing right now until we build back up.:
Arts Kentucky’s members include 400 arts groups and individuals. It is affiliated with Americans for the Arts.