San Diego Municipal & Arts Services Convening – 07.24.2019

San Diego Municipal & Arts Services Convening – 07.24.2019

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San Diego Municipal & Arts Services Convening
Museum of Making Music

Thursday, July 24, 2019
3pm – 5pm



The purpose of the meeting was to bring together the senior staff countywide who run municipal arts agencies/arts councils and regional service organizations, which, together, form a countywide network of agencies. The goal was to identify common areas that we may work on together, exclusive of advocacy.

High level summary of meeting:

Discussed current priorities of the San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture, as well as the lack of a countywide arts organization with ideas, barriers and efforts to move towards establishing one. End result of meeting was agreement that there should be a visioning session to establish the level of need, form and function of a countywide arts organization.


  • Jonathon Glus, San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture
  • Stephanie Teel, San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture
  • Amanda Ecoff, NCAN
  • James Halliday, National City
  • Kelly Purvis, Coronado
  • Lynnette Tessitori, Chula Vista
  • Jim Gilliam, Encinitas
  • Richard Schultz, Carlsbad
  • Brigid Parsons, Oceanside
  • Allison Hargis, Museum of Making Music
  • Lexi Meyerowitz, Lux Art Institute
  • Mikee Ferran, Escondido Center for the Arts
  • Maria Mingalone, Oceanside Museum of Art
  • Naomi Nussbaum, Synergy Arts
  • Patricia Frischer, SDVAN
  • Michael Rennie, Poway OnStage


  • Introductions of attendees
  • Goal for the meeting is to identify the intersection points for countywide issues of arts organizations, loose set of priorities and how to organize in the county
  • Figure out what are omissions and potential partners in the arts ecosystem of the county
    • Many cities in San Diego County have no arts & culture departments, but there has been recent progress, such as the passage of the City of Oceanside’s Master Plan for the Arts
    • City of Carlsbad recognized NCAN as a regional partner in the arts
    • NCAN working to achieve 501c3 status
    • South and East county areas starting to mobilize, next meeting in August
  • Next priority for City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture (SDCAC) is to create a countywide assessment of job categories in creative businesses; impetus was film commission
    • San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation (EDC) will lead this effort, supposed to be delivered by June of next year, funded by EDC and SDCAC
  • Also, racial equity audit and assessment will be conducted, first internal to SDCAC through February, then public engagement phase countywide
  • The SDCAC is the only California Arts Council (CAC) State-Local Partner (SLP) in San Diego County. There may be up to 2 organizations designated as SLP in a county. SDCAC does have some county-wide efforts, which are funded by CAC SLP funds.
    • definition of SLP according to CAC: “A local arts agency is defined as the official county-designated organization that supports arts and cultural activity in service to individuals and communities throughout an entire county.”
    • to be designated as SLP, the County Supervisors must vote for the organization to be an official county-designated arts organization
    • At last CAC meeting, it was discussed that funds for SLP have a high likelihood of being increased in the future as the CAC looks for more efficient and effective ways to fund art organizations that have an impact to all in the county
  • SDCAC mission is to serve the City of San Diego, it is a disadvantage to the organization that there is no countywide entity as a partner
  • Previously, county supervisors and SDCAC were not supportive of a countywide entity
  • “San Diego needs a countywide partner”; what SDCAC wants in a partner:
    • Office within the County of San Diego structure; or
    • 501(c)(3) countywide arts service organization, with board and priorities well defined
  • Discussed situation in Los Angeles, relationship between city and county organizations, synchronicity and synergism
  • San Diego Regional Arts and Culture Coalition (SDRACC) is a partner organization that performs professional development, advocacy and lobbying functions in the county; they are doing strategic planning in the fall
  • Some areas for countywide arts organization focus: civic art policies, best practices, networking, collaboration, promotion
  • Need to view via lenses of diversity, equity, economic strata, size of art organization when considering opportunities and distribution of available funds
  • Some organizations that may lend perspective: LA Dept of Arts and Culture, WESTAF, other county arts councils/commissions, CAC, Californians for the Arts
  • Proposed next meeting: Early October in Coronado, a facilitated visioning session to create a blueprint to determine path forward for a countywide organization. SDCAC will pay for the facilitator with SRP funds.
  • Action Item: Create subcommittee to spearhead framing for next meeting (Jonathon)