Kansas City Office of Culture and Creative Services Receives Inaugural Alchemy Award from the Missouri Arts Council
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Sept. 8, 2016
The KCMO Office of Culture and Creative Services today was one of 11 organizations and individuals honored for the outstanding work being done to encourage economic development throughout Missouri.
Mike Downing, Director of the Missouri Department of Economic Development, presented the Alchemy Award to Director Megan Crigger, who has headed the office since it was established in 2015 to lead cultural development efforts for the City.
This is the first year the Missouri Arts Council has given this award, which recognizes individuals, businesses and organizations that use the arts to create jobs, develop workforce, or enhance economic development.
“Kansas City is fortunate to have such outstanding professionals working in the Office of Cultural and Creative Services,” Mayor Sly James said. “This award speaks directly to their hard work to create jobs and develop our city’s artistic workforce. Our city’s arts and culture sector is incredibly vibrant and we continue to see the great benefits of harnessing that energy and turning it into creative and innovative economic development opportunities. I congratulate the Office of Cultural and Creative Services on winning this prestigious award and thank them for their dedication to growing the arts in Kansas City.”
Crigger was among a strong contingent of KCMO officials at the 58th Annual Governor’s Conference on Economic Development held at the Sheraton Crown Center.
“I am thrilled for the office to be recognized for this inaugural award and honored to be representing the City of Kansas City, Missouri,” Crigger said.
View the complete list of award recipients.
The KCMO Arts Convergence Plan is a road map for the Office of Culture and Creative Services which shows investing in the arts ensures more jobs in the creative sector, increases access to education and life-long arts learning and enhances cultural identity citywide.
Additionally, assessments of art sector needs and opportunities found that artists need gap financing and the ability to build equity. To help, the Office of Culture and Creative Services collaborated with community partners to launch the only micro-loan programs specific to artists and art businesses:
- ArtCap Micro-loan Program: Launched in partnership with AltCap in February 2016, to connect artists to business development services that support their art practices. To date, two loans have been provided through this program totaling $37,600.
- Justine Petersen Micro-loan Program: This program, piloted in partnership with Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City in June 2015, has loaned $32,000 to nine artists. An additional appropriation of $400,000 was approved by City Council for artist loans in 2016.
“AltCap congratulates the City on this award and appreciates their partnership in supporting ‘ArtCap,’ our creative microloan fund to help the arts community fund their passions,” said Ruben Alonso, President of AltCap.
The Office of Culture and Creative Services also recently partnered with the Kansas City Film & Media Office to create the Film Development Program, which is unique in that Kansas City is the only U.S. city with a local film incentive that does not also have a statewide film incentive.
“Having a city entity like the Office of Culture and Creative Services that advocates for the arts and develops programs that support the creative economy makes a difference in the growth of Kansas City,” Kansas City Film Commissioner Stephane Scupham said. “I am happy to report that two films have been accepted into the KCMO Film Development Program and collectively estimate a Kansas City, Missouri, direct spend of $920,722.”
Media inquiries should be directed to Arts Marketing Consuelo Cruz at firstname.lastname@example.org or 816-513-3475.