Meeting with Chatham County’s Legislative Delegation

In advance of the State of Georgia’s legislative open session, the Arts and Culture Alliance of Chatham County and Georgians for the Arts met with the delgation to present some “ask” to help advance or further the arts and culture within the State.  In addition to a number of back up materials originating from Americans for the Arts and the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, they were presented with the state of arts and culture in the state as well as a series of asks.  Download the handout to review what was presented.

If there are other ideas, concerns, desires, etc., please email them to patrick[at]

Download Handout

Arts policy plays role in election

Published in the Savannah Morning News on November 24, 2019
   The election cycle brought an increased number of opportunities for candidates to share their vision, accomplishment, priorities, and platforms.  This year for the first time, voters had the chance to hear from candidates and their arts and culture platform.
   Given the platforms and the outcomes of the election, one could construe perhaps a close correlation.  Candidates that responded and reflecting the active contribution of arts and culture to our community’s fabric triumphed at the ballot box.
   Indeed, there are numerous priorities the people’s governments need to address or balance.  It does well, however, to recognize the full value of arts and culture as a good investment, an economic driver contributing to better education, workforce, health, and a more exceptional quality of life, among other benefits.  Few industries, if any, can tout the same.  
   It is refreshing to see a seismic shift in the City of Savannah’s representation, and the future looks bright.  
   We will soon complete the election cycle and enter the new year with new leadership.  
   It is, however, nearly too late for the 2020 budget with the current Council, where the cultural investment funds will probably stay the same as 2018 (and 2017) with a zero percent increase. 
   Still, hopefully, the new City Council will take more significant action to provide for more available and accessible funding as well as a better overall pro-arts and culture public policy positioning.
   Next up is the election of Chatham County Commissioners.  It is time they take action to actively support arts and culture.  There is significant room for improvement in nearly every district, including the chairmanship’s public policy position on arts and culture within the county.
Patrick A. Kelsey
Arts and Culture Council of Chatham County

2019 Arts and Culture Candidate Questionnaire

Through a collaborative effort between Rob Hessler, Executive Director, Bigger Pie Arts Advocacy, Kristopher Monroe, Vice-Chair Savannah-Chatham Historic Site & Monument Commission, Gretchen Hilmers, Social Media Coordinator, ARC Savannah, and Peter Roberts, Location Gallery, the Arts and Culture Alliance of Chatham County is pleased to provide you the Arts and Culture Candidate Questionnaire Responses for the 2019 City of Savannah Local Elections.
Download the voter guide to see your candidate’s arts and culture platform.  Share with your friends too to help them know where candidates are positioned in relation to those issues and priorities that impact the arts and culture fabric of the Savannah-Metro Area.

September Update

[The following was distributed via the official ACACC email list and through social media.   If you received or saw neither, be sure you’re on the list or that you’re Liking and Following.  If you are Liking the page you may not always be Following it.]

September 23, 2018

* Free Marketing Workshop
* Weave-A-Dream Deadline Approaching
* National Arts Advocacy Day
* Chatham County Arts and Culture Directory and Calendar

Free Marketing Workshop

On Friday, October 12 at Savannah Coffee Roasters, the Arts and Culture Alliance of Chatham County will hold the second in a series of workshops dedicated to strengthening the long-term sustainability of Chatham County’s arts and culture organizations. The workshop begins at 9 a.m.

In partnership with ThriveHive, this one-hour plus free marketing workshop is designed to help your arts and culture organization improve its marketing efforts, identify new methods of reaching audiences, hear how valuable a digital marketing strategy can be in today’s day and age, and how to best utilize it to reach the right audiences at the right time.

Seating is limited. Please register by October 9. (Only 9 Tickets Are Available) (

About ThriveHive: ThriveHive’s mission is to guide businesses to achieve extraordinary local marketing results using the right blend of software, data, and people. ThriveHive helps people working in local business do what they love by combining actual human guidance with easy-to-use technology to make marketing your business easy, effective, and affordable. With ThriveHive’s Guided Marketing Platform and digital marketing services, you can eliminate the guesswork, maximize your time, and get back to what’s really important—running your business.

Weave-A-Dream Deadline Approaching

The deadline for Weave-A-Dream funding, November 13, 2018, is approaching quickly. There are still a lot of funds remaining that very well might go unused.

If you are an individual or an organization that could use up to an extra $2,000 visit to see if you qualify or contact Rebecca Brown to discuss further. The Weave-A-Dream program should be of particular interest to those organizations that did not apply for FY 2018 or 2019 Investment funds and everyone else that could use some extra funds for their arts and culture-based project.

The criteria are very flexible but note that student-based projects are not permitted by the Arts, Culture & Historical Resources Department.

National Arts Advocacy Day

Save the date for the next National Arts Advocacy Day. The two-day event is scheduled for March 4-5, 2019 in Washington, DC. Personally, I have been attending for seven years with my students I and always find it insightful and meaningful.

For 2019, Americans for the Arts’ Arts Action Fund appointed me as Georgia’s State Captain. To that end, you will hear more from me as the date gets closer.

Given the current arts and culture public policy climate, I hope that the State of Georgia can have a strong showing and thus have a real measurable impact. Again, you’ll hear more about this in early 2019, but if you are interested in knowing more today and want to consider attending, let me know.

Chatham County Arts and Culture Directory and Calendar

ACACC is in the process of exploring options to provide a centralized database of all arts and culture organizations, artists, venues, and events. ACACC will then promote the directory and calendar countywide as funds permit.

If you are interested in knowing more about this or how you can add yourself to the database, please let me know.