Daily Record Staff//May 14, 2021
//May 14, 2021
President and Chief Executive Officer
Young Audiences/Arts for Learning, Maryland
What have you had to change during the past year to make sure you were still “serving” even if the approach had to change?
We changed our approach. Schools were closed and our artists could no longer go into classrooms to help teachers integrate the arts into instruction. Many children did not have access to engage in online learning. We had to quickly innovate. We produced a TV show, which brought our artists into homes through a public access channel; we distributed creativity kits to 22,000 kids at meal sites; and we produced the largest event in our history – Blacktastic – that reached 17,000 students.
The past year has not only been challenging with COVID-19 but we have also faced race and discrimination challenges. How do you establish a strategy for diversity, equity and inclusion in your organization?
Strategy needs to be rooted in addressing the underlying reasons why your organization is not diverse, equitable or inclusive. This starts with collecting and looking at data to see where the disparate outcomes are by race. It also means bringing people from different levels of the organization and different races/ethnicities together in the organization to identify the reasons why and what needs to be done to change. Strategy must include accountability.