Wheaton Seeks Community Leaders for Arts and Entertainment Advisory Board

Councilmember Natali Fani-González has announced an initiative to elevate Wheaton’s diverse cultural identity by collaborating with local artists, community leaders, and businesses to establish a nonprofit organization dedicated to nurturing, promoting, and celebrating the rich global heritage of Wheaton’s arts and entertainment experiences.

Currently, a 22-member group is in the process of creating a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, which will enable the Wheaton Arts and Entertainment Board to raise funds in support of arts and entertainment efforts in the Wheaton area.

Part of this process involves the formation of a nominating committee to identify up to 15 board members.

“Wheaton has a rich and beautiful identity that is eager to be showcased 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 crucial to move us forward.”

“I am pleased that the Wheaton Arts and Entertainment Committee is moving forward to establish a 501(c)(3) organization,” County Executive Marc Elrich said in a press release. “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 Theatre, the 22-member Wheaton Arts and Entertainment ad hoc group was recently established to work towards creating the bylaws for this brand-new arts and entertainment nonprofit for Wheaton. The next step is creating a Nominating Committee that will formally appoint up to 15 board members for this nonprofit.

“Wheaton 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 ad hoc group is seeking Nominating Committee members to serve for up to three months 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, 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 by 5 p.m. on April 12 via email to [email protected]. A member of the nominating committee cannot be considered for the board of directors of the nonprofit. For questions, contact Kathia Chevez from Councilmember Natali Fani-González’s office at [email protected].

Photo: © daboost – stock.adobe.com / Montgomery County graphic

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