Greater Cincinnati's arts sector benefits greatly from our region's long tradition of support for the arts. That tradition includes both individual patronage and partnerships with major local companies. That partnership extends both ways — local businesses are well aware of the economic benefits that come with a strong ecosystem. Arts organizations and local businesses can do a lot for each other,and that's the founding principle of BOARDway Bound.
BOARDway Bound is ArtsWave's signature non-profit board training and placement program. In it, accomplished, diverse professionals can pursue their passion for making a difference in the region through the arts. BOARDway Bound returns this year on September 10, with applications accepted through June 15.
BOARDway Bound provides all the tools necessary to become a successful arts board volunteer, while offering a unique peer learning environment across companies and the chance to interact with Greater Cincinnati's arts professionals. 2019's program will once again be led by ArtsWave President & CEO Alecia Kintner, whose career in arts administration spans two decades.
Kate Haralson of the Health Collaborative is a graduate of the 2018 BOARDway Bound class. As a healthcare professional, she wanted to learn more about how the arts can be used in healing. As an avid supporter of the arts, she also wanted to see what she could do to combine her personal passions with professional development. The program was a perfect match.
Kate is now serving on the board of dance group Pones. After joining the board in February, she quickly found opportunities to contribute based on her experience, including maintaining the group's website. As for the benefits to Kate — and to the Health Collaborative — she gained a much more thorough understanding of the nuances of nonprofit leadership. Those lessons, as it turns out, can be applied whether the nonprofit is arts- or healthcare-related. She's also found herself more engaged and connected to her community, making Greater Cincinnati feel that much more like home.
The same can be said for fellow BOARDway Bound 2018 alum Lydia Sites, an IT professional with Ranstad / P&G and now board member for Contemporary Dance Theatre. "BOARDway Bound allowed me to not only find an organization to work with but also opened my eyes to how vast and diverse the arts scene is in Cincinnati," says Lydia. "I walked away more informed and even prouder of my hometown." Lydia encourages others to get involved, stressing that the program "works with what you bring to the table.
These experiences are hardly alone. Over the last decade, BOARDway Bound has placed more than 300 candidates on various arts boards throughout the region. Now, ArtsWave is looking for the next crop of arts board leaders. Participants will take part in six, 2.5 hour sessions from September 10 to November 19. Topics range from advocacy, fundraising and marketing to understanding arts budgets and nonprofit governance. In the final session, candidates will meet with 25-30 arts groups in a fast-paced, speed-dating approach. The program culminates with an "observership" period with a carefully chosen arts board and, in many cases, a subsequent invitation to join it.
BOARDway Bound applications are due June 15. Applicants from all backgrounds and career stages are welcome. ArtsWave encourages diverse candidates to apply, with the goal of ensuring that the programs and practices of the region's arts and cultural organizations are reflective of our entire community.
For more information or to apply, visit ArtsWave.org/BOARDwayBound.