It should be obvious that an Arts Council benefits Artists. Not so obvious is the fact that Artists benefit a Community with economic stability.
The development of the arts at all levels is proven to be the single most effective way to achieve sustainable economic growth and to enrich the quality of life for all citizens. (Research from Americans for the Arts and the NEA).
Up till now, San Juan County did not have an Arts Council and technically it still doesn't, but we're getting close. Hopefully in November the first Board of directors will be elected for a San Juan County Arts Council (SJCAC). With 4000 Arts Councils nationwide, the idea is not new but it is effective and with luck San Juan County will soon be "on board".
According to Pamela Gross (with the San Juan Community Foundation) "The idea of an Arts Council was floated by many people over the years. When the economy started to sink,(2007-08) the Community Foundation created the Critical Needs Task Force.. . .It recognized that the Arts are important and that artistic people and talent contribute hugely to a healthy community.. . . Hence, the Foundations' support for an Arts Council."
In 2010 a grant was given by the Community Foundation to start the SJCAC. A steering committee formed and goals were set, (including an inventory of all-islands artists and venues, the construction of a website and the establishment of a membership.) The new SJCAC is now well on it's way to becoming a reality.
The Mission: The San Juan County Arts Council works to promote and integrate the artistic resources of the county for the creative economic development, education and overall well-being of the community
The Vision: Where arts flourish, community prospers and lives are enriched