State Arts Agency to Hold Strategic Plan Community Forum in Columbus

Tuesday, 29 November 2011
ATLANTA - Georgia Council for the Arts (GCA) will hold its second strategic plan community forum in Columbus on Wednesday, December 7th at 10:30 a.m. at the Springer Opera House Theatre. Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson will begin the event by providing an overview of the significance of the arts in Columbus. This is the second in a series of statewide community forums to assist the development of a plan that will outline the direction, goals and growth of the arts council over the next five years. Representatives of the arts community, as well as those with an interest in the arts, have been invited to attend and encouraged to participate by providing feedback.

"Columbus has a long standing tradition of excellence in the arts which includes being home to the Springer Opera House - the state theatre of Georgia - as well as many other highly respected and well-known organizations," said Mayor Tomlinson. "Columbus applauds Governor Deal and Georgia Council for the Arts for realizing the importance of the arts in Georgia and seeking to maximize the social, educational and economic impact of the artistic contributions made by those organizations."

As a division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development, Georgia Council for the Arts seeks to produce a strategic plan that clearly defines the organization's priorities and charts the course for the role of the arts in Georgia's future, including tourism, education and job growth. Inviting public participation reinforces the commitment of the arts council to its stakeholders. Events are planned through February 2012 for additional regions of the state in cities that include Augusta, Gainesville, Macon, Savannah and Tifton.

Comments and suggestions collected during the town hall meetings will assist the arts council in developing goals and objectives that foster innovation, maximize the state's ability to leverage federal funding and prioritize programs to best serve and advance the arts in Columbus and throughout the state.

"We are pleased to have Mayor Tomlinson participate in the strategic plan forum. Columbus can take pride in the fact that the leader of the city not only has a commitment to the arts community but encourages public input and civic involvement," said GCA director, Karen Paty. "Community participation is critical to developing a truly collaborative plan that reflects the current and projected needs of the arts industry while also serving as the guidepost by which we chart the course of our growth over the next five-years."

Georgia Council for the Arts is a division of the Georgia Department of Economic Development that provides support for nonprofit arts organizations throughout the state. Established in 1965 as the Georgia Commission on the Arts, its mission is to encourage excellence in the arts, support the arts' many forms of expression and make the arts available to all Georgians by providing funding, leadership, programming and other services. Funding for Georgia Council for the Arts is provided through appropriations from the Georgia General Assembly, the National Endowment for the Arts and other private and public sources.

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Contact Jhai James for more information at 404.962.4839 or