“Art makes life better,” Governor Kate Brown said, in her opening remarks during today’s Governor’s Arts Awards.

Absolutely yes.

Art makes life better.

It was a powerful reminder on this spectacular fall morning, reinforced by BRAVO Youth Orchestra and Darrell Grant performing for attendees, and the inspiring work of this year’s Governor’s Arts Award recipients.

Then there was Darrell Grant, reminding the audience that in these times we are “engaging the power of art to change the world.”

Yes. This is the work before us.

The Cultural Advocacy Coalition defends and advances the value of our cultural sector in the public sphere. We remind politicians that we need the arts. That art makes life better. We connect them with the soul of their community, state and nation; constantly being shaped, remembered and interpreted by arts and culture. We give them the opportunity to act on this belief that the arts can heal, challenge, express, honor and connect when we need it most.

And along the way we remind them that arts, heritage and the humanities provide local jobs, drive tourism, advance education goals and spur the innovation economy.
This is the role we serve in our state’s cultural ecology.

We exist to support and amplify the work of cultural nonprofits to improve access to cultural resources and strengthen support for arts and culture in the halls of government.

But, we can’t do this work without you.

Without grants or ticket sales, the Cultural Advocacy Coalition relies on its members. We are supported by arts and culture organizations and patrons each year who are committed to sustaining the advocacy efforts of a broad, diverse coalition that remains proactively engaged in the legislative arena, to create a thriving environment for art, heritage and the humanities across Oregon.

Thank you to our individual and organizational members who have already renewed this year. I can’t say this enough: you make this work possible! Your support allows us to partner with legislative champions to advance our agenda and prepare for greater progress in the year ahead.

But let me also say, if you are not yet a member and you receive publicly funded grants or participate in arts and culture; if love your local theater, library, art walk, live music venue; historic lodge, restored downtown or regional museumyou are one of us! And we would love to welcome you to the state’s only Coalition dedicated to advocacy for arts, heritage and the humanities.

Giving is quick and easy. Will you take a moment to renew or join right now?

Your personal gift of $15, $50 or $250 helps us work to advance arts education, increase funds for cultural infrastructure, preserve charitable giving incentives and protect the Oregon Cultural Trust.

But, really it comes down to this: art makes life better. And, together, we are here to engage the power of art to change the world. If you are still reading, but are not yet a member, I’ll say it one last time: you are one of us—will you join today?