Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Is Your Arts Organization Ready for On BOARD?

Good afternoon SMARTies,

Is your organization ready for new board members? Are you unsure of how or where to start seeking new board members? If so, the Arts and Business Council's On BOARD program may be your answer.

The Arts and Business Council (A&BC) works with both the organizations and the candidates throughout the process. Interested arts groups complete a comprehensive application and may be interviewed by an A&BC staff member to ensure that your organization is prepared for and committed to the program. Click here for more information.

Current clients of the Arts and Business Council including organizations who have participated in the past may complete the ON BOARD Application. The application deadline to apply for the Spring 2013 session is February 3, 2013.

The fee to participate as an arts group is $200 which is due at the beginning of the program. Organizations can participate frequently in On BOARD and groups that don't receive a placement are automatically eligible to return for the next session to meet a new group of candidates. Click here for more details.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Baroque meets Contemporary

Thanks in part to the wonderful support we’ve received from the SMARTGrowth program, Baroque Band has taken on new projects that challenge us to continue pushing the limits of our art form.

In February, Baroque Band is partnering with the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) to present “The 21stCentury Brandenburg Project.” In three concerts at the MCA, we will perform all six of Bach’s beloved Brandenburg Concertos. Six contemporary composers have written works inspired by the Brandenburgs, using identical instrumentation. The result will be a pairing of each Bach piece with its new, 21st Century “reimagining,” all performed on the instruments of Bach’s era.

Garry Clarke, Baroque Band's founding artistic director
“Period instruments are experiencing a resurgence in popularity – not only among performers, but composers as well. They are drawn to the intimate, voice-like qualities of the instruments, which offer a wholly different sound and aesthetic from modern instruments,” noted Garry Clarke, founding artistic director of Baroque Band.

Support from the Chicago Community Trust’s SMARTGrowth program has helped Baroque Band think strategically, examining ways to reach a broader audience and ensure the continued relevance of its art form. The 21st Century Brandenburg Project will expose Baroque Band to an entirely new demographic of contemporary music and art fans, while elevating the ensemble’s artistic profile through partnership with a prestigious Chicago institution. Baroque Band’s February performances are part of a new music series at the MCA, on which the esteemed ensembles eighth blackbird and ICE will also appear this season.  

We encourage our fellow SMARTGrowth recipients to join us for one or more of our MCA performances. The MCA is located at 220 E. Chicago Ave. in downtown Chicago. Dates and times of our performances are as follows:

·      Thursday, February 21 at 7:30 PM
·      Saturday, February 23 at 7:30 PM
·      Sunday, February 24 at 3:00 PM

For more information or to reserve tickets, please visit:

We hope to see many of you there!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Panel Discussion: With Arts at the Heart

Interesting panel discussion guaranteed to be filled with great exchange ideas and food for thought.

With Arts at the Heart: promoting artistic vitality in St.Paul, MN and Cuyahoga County, OH

A panel discussion with ...

Karen Gahl-Mills, Executive Director of Cuyahoga Arts and Culture
Joe Spencer, Director for Arts and Culture for the city of St.Paul
Julie Burros (moderator), Director of Cultural Planning for Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events

Wednesday, January 30, 4:00-5:30pm
Chicago Cultural Center
78 E Washington Street
First Floor Garland Room 

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Call for Nominations!

Good morning SMARTies!

The Axelson Center for Nonprofit Management at North Park University is proud to present the Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence.

The Axelson Center is seeking nominations of organizations that embody exemplary organizational management qualities. Staff, board members and volunteers may nominate their own organizations. In order to be considered for the award, an applicant must be a 501(c)3 organization and its primary mission focus must benefit Chicago and/or its surrounding communities. Click here for more information. Applications must be postmarked by February 1, 2013.

If you're a small 501(c)3 organization that has been in existence 10 years or less, has a budget of under $750,000, and has less than 10 full-time staff, you might consider applying for the Excellent Emerging Organization Award. Application must be postmarked by March 1, 2013.

Contact the Axelson Center by email or by phone at 773-244-5747 to nominate an organization for this award. Organizations do not need to be nominated in order to apply but members of the community are welcome to nominate organizations that they know. An organization can self-nominate by completing the application, in this case you do not need to notify the Center prior to your application submission.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

FREE Seminar: Cost Allocation

Hello SMARTies,

I hope you're having a great week so far. Here's a FREE upcoming seminar at the Axelson Center for Nonprofit Management. Find the details below.

Cost Allocation
The  Axelson Center for Nonprofit Management
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
9:00 am - 11:00 am
FREE (limit 2 per organization)
RSVP required. Click Here


This seminar will help managers create a cost allocation plan that will improve the critical financial information provided to boards, grantors and donors. This informational event is perfect for management team members or those with grant writing responsibilities. This session will look at the proper allocation of costs among programs, management, and fundraising categories and how cost allocation decisions impact financial support received from grantors and other supporters.


Russell J. Wilson, CPA, is a Partner at Porte Brown LLC, a Chicago area accounting, technology and wealth management firm, where he leads the firm's not-for-profit practice group. Mr. Wilson and his team specialize in meeting the unique needs of small to mid sized organizations.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Workshop: A.B.C. 20/20 MONEY

Coordinated by Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC), here's another great opportunity to start the year off on the right track!

A.B.C 20/20 MONEY
January 19, 2013
11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Presentation Only: $5 CAC members + residents, $10 General public
Presentation + Consultation: $25 CAC members + residents, $30 General public
Click for more info/Register

20/20 Money is the second part of a 4-part series, which focuses on clarifying best practices in accounting and financial management for artists and also the tax impact of different business entities. This session is perfect preparation for tax season.

Kelly Etting, President of Ledgers Inc.
Jenny Fitzpatrick, Bookkeeper for CAC and Asst. Treasurer/Lead Accountant of Nat'l Lewis University
Julie Herwitt, CPA of Herwitt & Associates LLC
Brian Hornstein, CPA, CGMA at Discover
Greg Teagues, Financial Connect Specialist at ComPsych, Accountant at Practical Financial Solutions

'Pay What You Can' option is available, contact for more details.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

FREE Webinar and Workshop reminder

Happy New Year! I hope everyone started the year on the right foot. There's a couple of webinars and workshop that may be of your interest.

1. This one is very last minute but it's FREE.
What's an Asking Style and How Do I Use Mine?
Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Time: 10:00 am - 10:30 am
Info: Everyone has a unique way of asking for donations. At this webinar you'll learn why it's important to fundraise in your own style, how the Asking Style system will improve your fundraising results and how to choose the perfect prospects to solicit given your style.
Click Here for more info and to Register

2. Reminder: A&BC's workshop 
Building Cultural Corporate Partnerships
Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Time: 5:30 pm - 7:30 pm
Columbia College Chicago
623 S Wabash, Hokin Hall, Rm 109
Price: $45 (npo budget < $250K), $65 (npo budget>$250K/for-profit)
Info: The arts community if aware of the value to form alliances with local businesses and worldwide corporations to build support and visibility. However, arts organizations are often uncertain of how or where to start in developing such relationships. Don't miss the opportunity to learn practical and useful information of how to develop your own prospect list and case studies.
Click Here for more info and to Register

Monday, January 7, 2013


DanceWorks Chicago is excited to announce a NEW opportunity for choreographers through DanceWorks Chicago's DanceMoves. Information about this competition is on our website and posted on the DWC Facebook page as well as our Dance Chance FB page.  Application deadline: Monday, January 14, 2013.  NO application fee :-)

Your help to share with your networks...priceless!

Thanks for considering!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Happy New Year!

Sending greetings of the new year...hope everyone had a festive celebration. May 2013 be filled with beautiful adventures (and Smart Growth, of course!).

Speaking of adventures, if you have three minutes, please take a look at the photo album of New Avenues/Nuevas Aventuras posted on the DanceWorks Chicago Facebook page! Art has the power to transport without viewers having to leave their seats.