EMERGING ART LEADERS
In 2010, Simone Perraza and Dominic Arellano planned to meet each other on a Saturday to talk about, unknowingly, the same idea – Emerging Arts & Cultural Leaders of Detroit. What came in time was a fleshed out idea that actually began in 2008.
Within the arts in Detroit, there is a strong need and opportunity for collaborations between organizations, communities and industries that share the same interests. Since as early as 2008, members of Emerging Arts & Cultural Leaders of Detroit (EACLD) Steering Committee have been involved in various discussions and studies on the issues of leadership succession, connecting the next generation of leaders from the Detroit arts community and empowering them to take the reins and incorporate their own ideas to solidify and advance quality arts and access to creativity in the city and region. A key component to the future of our region’s art community is both establishing and operating a young professional art leaders network, using a successful organizational model/format, and identifying key individuals inside the Detroit region’s arts and cultural community.
Recently, Steering Committee members conducted research interviews and discussions with the following key organizations for input, ideas and feedback about the “Emerging Arts & Cultural Leaders of Detroit” effort: Emerging Leaders Network in Pittsburgh, Emerging Leaders Network in New York, Emerging Leaders Network in Washington D.C., Americans for the Arts’ (AFTA) national Emerging Leaders Council, Ann Arbor Arts (A3) Leaders, New Leaders Art Council of Michigan (NLACM) and the state arts council Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs (MCACA). All have seen successful outcomes from these initiatives.
Specifically, survey data pulled from the 2009-2010 Emerging Leaders Network, a nation wide network and program of Americans For The Arts, indicted that emerging art leaders are looking for ways to educate themselves and connect with others in their field. In Detroit, where the arts play a large role in our community, it is critical to start establishing a network of our own. Building, connecting and elevating the skill set of this network will strengthen and create more opportunities for art managers and entrepreneurs, art organizations and artists. It also advances many of the initiatives this region is already addressing (education, connecting people for a better and stronger community, entrepreneurs, better jobs, etc).
Based on research from other networks, to better assist emerging leaders in their professional development, there are a number of needs EACLD will need including support from other organizations and an advisory and steering committee.
EACLD’s Steering Committee included Sioux Trujillo (College of Creative Studies, Kresge Artist Fellow 2009, Megan Miller (Mosaic Youth Theatre of Detroit), Dominic Arellano (Forward Arts, the Few Records), Jessica Guzman (VSA Arts Michigan) and Simon Perazza (ArtServe Michigan). After laying the foundation of researching other future art leadership organizations and programs in other cities, studying their surveys of art administrators and talking with their leaders, the committee has decided to go forth and disband the Steering Committee and create the group officially in 2012.