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Oklahoma Arts Council News

March 2022

Register for March 3 'State of the Arts' Town Hall

With the two-year anniversary of the original COVID-19 state of emergency approaching, the Oklahoma Arts Council is bringing together the state arts and cultural sector online for the 2022 Oklahoma State of the Arts Town Hall.

As challenges have evolved with every phase of the pandemic, the town hall will be an opportunity to learn how others in the arts across the state are managing their work, confronting obstacles and implementing solutions in response to current issues. Artists, cultural workers, arts administrators, community developers, educators, volunteers, and others involved in the arts are invited to participate.

During the convening, Oklahoma Arts Council Executive Director Amber Sharples will give an update on state ARPA relief funds for the arts. Oklahoma Arts Council staff will detail changes to several grant programs and highlight the impending reinstallation of artwork at the Oklahoma State Capitol. Oklahomans for the Arts' Tonnie Dosser will give an overview of Oklahoma Arts & Culture Day, which will take place at the Capitol on March 23. 

The 2022 Oklahoma State of the Arts Town Hall will take place on Zoom, Thursday, March 3, from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m.

Register for the town hall.

Deadline Nears for Input on OAC Communications

The Oklahoma Arts Council (OAC) is asking for feedback as we work to align our communication activities with our new 2021-2025 strategic plan. Using a brief 10-minute survey, created in partnership with Koch Comm, the Oklahoma Arts Council is seeking input about Oklahomans' involvement in the arts and their engagement with our agency. Responses will shape the way we use our communication tools to inform Oklahomans about programs, services, and resources offered by our agency and others in support of the state arts sector.

To encourage participation in the survey, Koch Comm will enter the names of all survey respondents into a drawing for the chance to receive one of five $25 Amazon gift cards.

The Oklahoma Arts Council values the input of those we serve. Consider taking a few moments to respond to the survey. Deadline to complete it is Friday, March 4.

Take the survey.

Oklahoma Arts & Culture Day March 23 at State Capitol

For the first time since 2019, Oklahoma Arts & Culture Day will be an in-person event at the Oklahoma State Capitol. Oklahomans in the Arts (OFTA) is inviting organizations and individuals in the arts sector across the state to mark their calendars and stay tuned for details and registration information.

Below is some of what you can expect at 2022 Oklahoma Arts & Culture Day at the Capitol:

  • 8:00 a.m. – Setup, Second Floor Rotunda

  • 9:00 a.m. – Kickoff, Second Floor Rotunda

  • 9:30 a.m. – "Advocacy in Oklahoma" Panel,
    Multipurpose Room (Ground Floor)

  • 11:00 a.m. – Arts Education Dashboard Panel,
    Multipurpose Room (Ground Floor)

  • 12:30 p.m. – Lunch, Multipurpose Room (Ground Floor)

  • 1:00 p.m. – Meet with Legislators

Plans for the day include performances, networking, and more. Registration for the event will open soon at

Leadership Arts Reunion

For graduates of the Oklahoma Arts Council's Leadership Arts program, a special gathering will take place following Arts & Culture Day activities. From 3:30 to 5:00 p.m., alumni can take part in a reunion at Factory Obscura, located near the State Capitol. Contact Molly O'Connor for details. Please note this is limited to alumni of the Leadership Arts program.

New Rural Grant Offering Provides $5,000 for Programs, Capacity-Building

A new grant program announced by the Oklahoma Arts Council offers up to $5,000 to organizations in select rural counties to support programming, capacity-building, and professional development.

Nonprofit organizations, units of local government, tribal nations, and libraries in 36 Oklahoma "Opportunity Counties" can apply for Rural Arts Opportunity Grants. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis for programs that are new or ongoing.

Eligible expenses that can be paid for using the grant include artistic and administrative payroll, consulting contracts, program-related marketing, and more.

The new grant program represents a strategic effort by the agency to reach areas of the state with limited or decreasing access to arts and cultural opportunities and resources. Opportunity Counties were identified through an analysis of Oklahoma Arts Council funding history and award distribution.

Organizations not located in an Opportunity County are encouraged to review funding available through our Small Grant Support, which provides three grants of up to $2,500 each per fiscal year.

Grant guidelines, an application preview, and more are available here.

Openings Remain for March Creative Aging Training

Openings remain in one of two upcoming trainings offered as part of the Oklahoma Arts Council's Creative Aging Initiative. The training is being conducted in partnership with Lifetime Arts. Interested individuals are urged to register soon, as space is limited.

Creative Aging Design and Development for Teaching Artists will take place in two-hour increments over three days, March 28-30. Sessions will run from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. Participants will learn about the development of skill-based, sequential instructional lessons for older adults. Best practices and exemplary programming will be highlighted. Register here.

Those who register for the taining will receive instructions at a later date for accessing the training portal in advance of the sessions.

Learn more about the Oklahoma Creative Aging Initiative in this recorded meeting on YouTube

The initiative is made possible through support from the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA) and Aroha Philanthropies.

Grantees Must Submit UEI Number to Oklahoma Arts Council by June 30

The official identifier used for doing business with the federal government is changing. DUNS numbers are being phased out and will be replaced by Unique Entity Identifiers (UEI). For grantees of the Oklahoma Arts Council, this affects your transactions with our agency. By June 30, all grantees must submit their UEI number to the Oklahoma Arts Council.

How do I get a UEI?

To register for a UEI number, go to There is no cost to register and receive it.

How do I submit my UEI to the Oklahoma Arts Council?

Once your organization has received its UEI number from the federal government, you must submit it to the Oklahoma Arts Council. To submit your UEI, simply log in to the Oklahoma Arts Council grant system. After logging in, you will be prompted to enter your UEI number.

UEI numbers will be required for the Oklahoma Arts Council to process FY2022 grant awards and all future grant awards.

Hear more about the transition from DUNS to UEI during the Oklahoma Arts Council's State of the Arts Town Hall on March 3.

'Being Oklahoma' Shines Light on Cultural Artists

A new video series produced by the Oklahoma Arts Council in partnership with the Metropolitan Library System is putting a spotlight on cultural artists in Oklahoma. The first two videos for the series, "Being Oklahoma: Exploring the Threads That Define Us," feature quilter Beverly Kirk and traditional musician Francisco Treviño. Born in Chickasha, Kirk's fabric work reflects African American traditions and stories. A native of Mexico who immigrated to Tulsa at age 11, Treviño's music centers on children's songs from Mexico and Central America. During March and April, Oklahoma City libraries will feature "Being Oklahoma" events that are tied to the artistic practices of Kirk and Treviño.

Go to the "Being Oklahoma" page to view a calendar of events and more.

View Beverly Kirk's video here.

View Francisco Treviño's video here.

Oklahomans Earn First Peoples Fund Honors

Oklahoma's Charlie Soap (Cherokee Nation) is one of four individuals from across the nation recently named as 2022 Community Spirit Award Honorees by First Peoples Fund. A resident of Tahlequah, Soap is a storyteller and Cherokee Nation tribal elder.

Each year, through the award category, First Peoples Fund celebrates exceptional Native artists and culture bearers. Native artists from across the country can earn the award, given to those who embody, through their creations and way of life, the cultural assets of their people.

First Peoples Fund also awarded Oklahoma City resident Madie Goodnight (Chickasaw) a 2022 Artists in Business Leadership Fellowship. Goodnight is an writer/illustrator whose focus is children's books. The fellowship program encourages the entrepreneurial spirit and supports specific arts business development goals.

AARP Grant Can Fund Livable Communities

The deadline for 2022 AARP Community Challenge applications is approaching. Submissions for the program are due March 22.

Through the program, AARP provides grants to fund quick-action projects that can help communities become more livable for people of all ages. Projects for which funding can be requested include the creation of vibrant public spaces. Oklahoma cultural district stakeholders are encouraged to learn how the funding can benefit their work.

Nonprofit organizations and government entities can apply. Other types of organizations interested in applying will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Learn more and apply here.

Job Opening with the Oklahoma Arts Council

The Oklahoma Arts Council is accepting applications for the position of Grants and Programs Associate. The full-time position manages daily grants office operations and provides support to program directors and other staff. Responsibilities include serving as the initial point of contact for organizations seeking Oklahoma Arts Council grant support, responding to inquiries from applicants and grantees, coordinating grant panel reviews, managing files and records, assisting the grants director with reports and activities, and more.

The Oklahoma Arts Council seeks enthusiastic and creative people with an entrepreneurial spirit and dedication to public service to join our team.

View the job description and application instructions here.

Celebrating the Staff of the Oklahoma Arts Council

The staff of the Oklahoma Arts Council is the agency's most valued resource. Each staff member is thoroughly committed to public service. We cherish the opportunity to work hard to meet the needs of the arts sector and build our state using the transformative power of the arts.

Below we celebrate milestones of Oklahoma Arts Council staff members.

Staff Anniversaries

Chandra Boyd and Jennifer Allen-Barron celebrate eight years on staff. Both were brought on board in late March 2014.

Boyd served initially as Arts Learning in Communities Director, where she spearheaded the launch of the Oklahoma Arts and the Military Initiative. She is currently the agency's Deputy Director.

Allen-Barron is the agency's Arts Education Director, where she has led endeavors such as the State Policy Pilot Program (SP3) and the launch of Classroom Supply Grants for Visual and Performing Arts.

Congratulations to Chandra and Jennifer on these public service milestones!