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Oklahoma Arts Council News

May 2015

Oklahoma Legislative Session Ends in May

State funding for the Oklahoma Arts Council for fiscal year 2016 will soon be decided as the close of the 2015 Oklahoma legislative session approaches. The session is scheduled to end no later than May 29. Governor Fallin and the state Legislature must agree on how to balance a budget with a revenue shortfall of $611 million.
Stay tuned for announcements from the Oklahoma Arts Council regarding the state budget and funding for the Oklahoma Arts Council's support and development of the arts across our state.

Read about the state budget here.

Patrick Riley to Lead Upcoming Arts Education Forums

Educators, parents, artists, community leaders, students, and other interested individuals are invited to attend one of three remaining arts education forums organized by the Oklahoma Arts Council and teaching artist Patrick Riley. Forums have already taken place in Canton, Idabel, Tahlequah, and Tulsa. The goals of the forums is to help Oklahoma Arts Council staff learn how the agency's arts education programs can better serve schools throughout the state.

Riley, a long-time Oklahoma teaching artist who won a 2011 Governor's Arts Award, will guide the forums after a brief opening presentation by the Oklahoma Arts Council's Arts Education Director Jennifer Barron. Forums are free and open the public. The remaining forums include:

  • Mangum High School, May 12, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

  • Shawnee, Mabee-Gerrer Museum of Art, May 18, 5:00 – 7:00 p.m.

  • Oklahoma City, Classen School of Advanced Studies, May 19, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Attend a forum and let us know how our programs can meet your needs in arts education!

For more information, contact our Arts Education Director, Jennifer Barron, at (405) 521-2036 or

Be Sure to Acknowledge Our Support for Your Program

Does your organization receive grant funding from the Oklahoma Arts Council for your art programs? If so, be sure you are following the requirements to appropriately acknowledge the Oklahoma Arts Council for its support. Our Acknowledgments Guide can help you meet the requirements.

As the state agency that leads in the support and development of the arts, the Oklahoma Arts Council provides more than 500 grants to more than 250 organizations each year across our state. By appropriately acknowledging our support for your program, you are informing Oklahomans and others of the impact of our funding in your community.

Download the Acknowledgments Guide.

Teaching Artists and Arts Educators Are Invited to a May 30 Workshop

Oklahoma teaching artists and arts educators are invited to a unique day of training that will take place from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 30 at the Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center in Oklahoma City.


First Peoples Fund Accepting Nominations for 2016 Community Spirit Awards

Each year, to honor exceptional American Indian, Native Alaskan, and Native Hawaiian artists who have worked to sustain the cultural fabric of their communities, First Peoples Fund recognizes a select number of Community Spirit Award winners from across the United States.

Now through July 1, 2015, nominations are being accepted for the 2016 awards. To be eligible, artists must be documented affiliates of United States tribes who have demonstrated maturity in their field and have a minimum of 10 continual years of practicing their art.

Consider nominating an Oklahoma artist whose dedication has helped sustain the cultural values of Native people. View nomination guidelines here.

Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise in Theatre

The Vilcek Prizes for Creative Promise were established in 2009 to encourage and support young immigrants who have demonstrated exceptional achievements and who have often faced significant challenges early in their careers.

Applications for the 2016 Creative Promise Prize in theatre are now being accepted. Playwrights, authors, directors, actors, designers, composers, lyricists, and choreographers are encouraged to apply for cash prizes of $50,000. Applicants must be have been born outside the United States.

Deadline to apply is June 15, 2015.

Become a Mentor to an Emerging Arts Leader

Seasoned leaders in the arts are vital resources in the development of the next wave of arts leadership in our state. If you have valuable experience in the arts that you know will benefit someone under the age of 35 or having fewer than five years of experience in the arts, consider becoming a mentor through our ONEAL Mentorship Program.

Open to individuals in communities statewide, the program connects mentors and mentees of similar interests for regular correspondence on leadership and career issues. Correspondence can take place through email, phone conversations, and/or in person. A minimum six month commitment is required.

To become a mentor, or for more information, contact Josh Lunsford, Community Arts Director, at (405) 521-2025 or

Welcome Maya Hering as Grants Director

Members of the Oklahoma Arts Council staff are pleased to welcome Maya Hering as the agency's Grants Director. Hering joins the agency after having worked for nonprofit organizations for more than 15 years.

A certified national trainer with a Master of Business Administration from American University in Washington, D.C., Hering previously worked for the National Resource Center for Youth Services in Tulsa, where she provided training and technical assistance to Department of Health and Human Services grantees across the nation.

For questions about Oklahoma Arts Council grants, contact Maya Hering at (405) 521-2040 or

Oklahoma Arts Council Seeks Grants and Finance Assistant

The Oklahoma Arts Council is accepting applications for the position of Grants and Finance Assistant. The person in this position organizes grant application and review processes, assists constituents with the e-grant application system, maintains related records, processes payments, and more.

Strong verbal and written communications skills are necessary. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree and knowledge of databases and accounts payable processing, among other qualifications.

To apply, submit a cover letter and resume via email to The position is open until filled.

View the full job description.

The Oklahoma Arts Council is an Equal Opportunity Employer.