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Applications Open for Greater Columbus Arts Council’s New Thrive Grants Program

in Press Releases August 6, 2020 2 min read

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Greater Columbus Arts Council (Arts Council) is introducing a new grant program, Thrive, designed to support arts organizations led by and serving people of color through unrestricted funding and resources. The program is intended to address disparities in arts funding by acknowledging that arts organizations serving people of color historically have experienced barriers to capital and resources.

“We began work on the Thrive concept last year as an extension of our ongoing cultural equity work,” said Tom Katzenmeyer, president and CEO of the Arts Council. “We are cognizant that, traditionally, organizations and artists of color are underfunded and we are intent on building more equitable programs. By providing unrestricted funds, organizations led by and serving people of color can use the money where most needed and focus on mission and growth.”

For the Thrive grant, three organizations will be selected annually to be part of a three-year engagement program. In the first year, organizations will be awarded an unrestricted grant of $10,000. They will also gather as a group for peer exchanges and be connected to helpful business resources and subject matter experts in the community and at the Arts Council.

For the second year, organizations will be eligible for a second $10,000 unrestricted grant based on their progress report and assessment by Arts Council staff. Organizations will be given an opportunity to work with a consultant paid for by the Arts Council (up to $5,000 additional value) on an assessment, strategy or specific plan, as identified by their board.

In the third and final year, each organization has the option to serve as a mentor to a new group awarded Thrive and will receive a $5,000 stipend for their time.

Organizations receiving Thrive grants will still be eligible for Project Support funding, but recipients of Arts Council Operating Support may not participate in the Thrive program.

Thrive grants will be selected by a panel that includes one Arts Council board member and four community members:

  • Nicholas Jones, director, Healthy Neighborhoods Healthy Families at Nationwide Children’s Hospital
  • Chansovan Long, senior accountant at United Way Columbus
  • Lillian Morales, VP of human resources at United Midwest Savings Bank
  • Shyam Rajadhyaksha, Arts Council board member and CFO at DLZ Corporation
  • Deba Uwadiae, publisher and editor-in-chief of The New Americans magazine

The deadline for applications is Tuesday, Sept. 1. View or download Thrive guidelines or visit the Arts Council website at for information on all grant programs. Applications may be submitted on GoArts, the Arts Council’s online grant portal.

Mission of the Greater Columbus Arts Council: To support and advance the arts and cultural fabric of Columbus.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council receives major financial support from the City of Columbus, Franklin County Commissioners and the Ohio Arts Council.

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CONTACT: Jami Goldstein
(614) 221-8492