Community Foundation Awards $450,000 to Local Arts and Cultural Organizations

September 26, 2008 (Syracuse, NY) – The Central New York Community Foundation recently awarded $450,000 in grants to 20 local arts and cultural organizations through its Program for Capacity and Excellence (PACE).

PACE was conceived more than two years ago, when the Community Foundation identified the long-term sustainability of the local arts community as deserving of special attention. At that time, the Community Foundation convened three of the area’s largest arts organizations – Syracuse Symphony, Syracuse Stage and Syracuse Opera Company – to develop plans that addressed their strategic development needs while making the most of their limited time, staff and financial resources.

This quarter, the program was opened to all arts and cultural organizations, large and small, in Onondaga and Madison Counties. Growing from its original three recipients, 20 organizations will receive PACE grants this year. The recipients are:

The Arts Branch of the YMCA: $17,000
Central NY Jazz Arts Foundation: $17,000
Earlville Opera House: $15,000
Everson Museum: $50,000
The Exhibition Alliance: $15,000
Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation: $15,000
Museum of Science and Technology: $50,000
Museum of Young Art: $10,000
Oneida Community Mansion House: $10,000
Open Hand Theater: $20,000
Rarely Done Productions: $10,000
Redhouse Arts Center: $15,000
The Skaneateles Festival: $15,000
Smithfield Community Association: $10,000
Syracuse Opera Company: $40,000
Syracuse Poster Project: $6,000
Syracuse Shakespeare Festival: $5,000
Syracuse Stage: $40,000
Syracuse Symphony Orchestra: $75,000
Upstate New York Ballet: $15,000

“We are really excited about the expansion of this program,” says John Eberle, the Community Foundation’s Vice President for Grants & Community Initiatives, “These organizations are taking steps to improve their long-term financial and organizational health. Their hard work and dedication will truly enhance our community’s already vibrant arts and cultural landscape.”

Now that the Community Foundation has pledged to invest in arts and cultural organizations that commit to implementing strategic solutions, grantees will be monitored closely to see if this program has its desired impact on the participating organizations and the community as a whole. In order to be eligible for up to two additional years of funding through this program, organizations must meet with Community Foundation staff on an ongoing basis and submit progress reports to ensure accountability towards their goals.

The Central New York Community Foundation connects the generosity of donors with community needs by making grants to organizations working to enhance the quality of life of those who live and work in Central New York. With assets of more than $117 million, the Community Foundation annually makes more than $5 million in grants and provides leadership support in the fields of arts and culture, community and economic development, education, environment, health and human services. Founded in 1927, the Community Foundation strives to inspire philanthropy in Central New York.

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