Wheaton Arts and Entertainment District Establishes Advisory Board

Courtesy MSAC

From the office of County Councilmember Natali Fani-González:

Per the news release: In an effort to take Wheaton’s diverse cultural identity to the next level, local artists, community and business leaders joined forces with Councilmember Natali Fani-González – and with the strong support of County Executive Marc Elrich – to create a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization to nurture, promote and celebrate the rich global heritage of arts and entertainment experiences that make Wheaton such a jewel in our region. Currently, the group of 22 members is in the process of creating a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, which will allow the Wheaton Arts and Entertainment Board to raise funds in support of Arts and Entertainment efforts in the Wheaton area. Part of this process is the creation of a nominating committee to identify up to 15 board members.

“We have a rich and beautiful identity in Wheaton that’s eager to be exposed to the region,” stated Councilmember Natali Fani-González, whose district includes Wheaton and Glenmont. “The challenge has been to raise funds to support arts and entertainment efforts in our community. Creating a nonprofit entity, led by board members who represent the unique diversity in our neighborhood, is key to move us forward.”

“I am pleased that the Wheaton Arts and Entertainment Committee is moving forward to establish a 501(c)(3) organization,” stated County Executive Marc Elrich. “This move reflects our commitment to fostering creativity, community engagement, and economic growth in Wheaton. By formalizing their structure, the committee can further leverage resources, attract funding, and expand opportunities for artists and audiences alike. This public-private partnership exemplifies the County’s collaborative approach towards empowering local initiatives and enhancing the vibrancy of our communities.”

Chaired by Ali Oliver-Krueger from InterAct Story Theater, the 22-member Wheaton Arts and Entertainment ad hoc group was established in recent months to work towards creating the by-laws for this brand new arts and entertainment non-profit for Wheaton. Now, the next step is creating a Nominating Committee that will formally appoint up to 15 board members for this nonprofit. “Wheaton’s has a vibrant arts community, one that deserves the support of a dedicated and robust Arts and Entertainment District,” stated Ms. Oliver-Krueger. “The creation of a new 501(c)(3) is a great step in advancing the needs of the artists and arts organizations who call Wheaton home, and of celebrating their diverse and wonderful contributions to our greater Wheaton community.”

The adhoc group is looking for Nominating Committee members to serve for up to three months in order to identify members of the first Board of Directors of the Wheaton Arts and Entertainment nonprofit organization. Once selected, the Board members will serve two-year terms and no more than three consecutive terms. Additionally, the terms of the Board members are to be staggered. Initial Board members may be elected for one full term of two years or one partial term of one year to effect the initial staggering of terms. The overall purpose of the governing Board of Directors is to ensure the organization’s activities conform to the purpose of its mission to nurture creativity, promote economic vitality, and celebrate Wheaton’s rich global heritage by supporting a wide array of arts activities. The Board members will have fiduciary responsibility for the organization, will approve the budget of the organization, and will ensure the organization has the financial resources to carry out its mission by engaging in fundraising. The board will select and provide oversight to the Executive Director of the organization. The membership of the board shall include representation of the arts community.

To qualify for the nominating committee, candidates need to have one or more of the following: nonprofit administration experience; familiarity with the greater Wheaton community; be an artist or a representative of an arts organization; or have strong influence within the art community.

Applications to join the nominating committee are due on April 12 by 5 p.m. via email to [email protected]. A member of the nominating committee cannot be considered for the board of directors of the 501(c)(3). For questions, please contact Kathia Chevez from Councilmember Natali Fani-González’s office at [email protected].

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