Congratulations to the Oregon Arts Commission, the Oregon Cultural Trust and the Canoe Group for a successful summit yesterday. I got back to Eugene thoroughly exhausted and enriched. My biggest takeaway is the need to be bold and not afraid to fail. The times they are a-changin’ and we need to have the guts to question what we think we know about how to run a cultural organization. This is a particularly resonant message for all of us at OFN as we strive to be innovative in our approach to serving Oregon’s traditional artists and diverse cultures. Fortunately for us we are brand new and have the opportunity to start with a blanker canvas than most.
Also I have to say happy birthday to the Oregon Cultural Trust! They have been one of the most innovative funding mechanisms for arts, culture and heritage in the country for eight full years now, and for that we should be thankful. One of the moments that really struck me yesterday was when Kimberly Howard pointed out that only 10% of cultural donors in the state give to the Cultural Trust. The OCT distributes funds to every county in Oregon (full disclosure, they fund us) and they definitely deserve our support.