The Iowa Culture Leadership Cohort is a pilot skill building program for small to mid-sized Iowa arts, culture, history and humanities nonprofit organizations. This program, administered by the Iowa Arts Council and State Historical Society of Iowa, will address the needs and challenges these organizations face by providing training, networking and technical assistance.
Potential applicants are encouraged to review all published material and contact Jennie Knoebel at 515-242-6194 or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions well in advance of the application deadline.
The Iowa Arts Council is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to eligible applicants. For technical support submitting the online application, please contact the Accessibility Coordinator, Lindsay Keast at 515-281-5773 or email@example.com, at least two weeks in advance of application deadlines.
Applications must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m., June 17, 2022.
Applicants will be notified of program participation no later than July 1, 2022.
The program will run for two years from July 1, 2022 - June 30, 2024.
Annual and Final Report
Participating organizations will be required to submit an annual report by August 1, 2023 and a final report by August 1, 2024.
Year One (July 1, 2022 - June 30, 2023)
The first year of the program will focus on skill building through three, full day in-person workshops, which will be held in a location central to program participants. Participants will be surveyed after being selected to determine their greatest needs to develop the agenda for the workshop days. Workshops will be facilitated by outside experts with participation from State Historical Society of Iowa and Iowa Arts Council staff. Proposed schedule below:
- September 2022 - Operations Workshop for all participants
- Topics may include: budgeting, volunteer management, board development, core documents
- November 2022 - Sustainability Workshop for all participants
- Topics may include: financial resource development, leadership succession planning, audience development
- January 2023 - Divide cohort into two workshop series - Collections Management & Exhibits and Arts Programming (this may change depending on participating organizations)
Organizations are encouraged to have key leadership consistently participate in all three workshops. This may include an Executive Director and the Board Chair or similar type roles within the organization.
There will be one on one calls with each organization and Department of Cultural Affairs staff to touch base in the months when workshops are not scheduled. These calls will be focused on information that was discussed during the workshops to answer any follow up questions.
Organizations will be partnered with a statewide mentor to offer additional guidance and support throughout the program.
Toward the end of the first year, each of the organizational participants will need to submit a short action plan that will identify the most critical, immediate need for their organization where additional hands-on, onsite training and technical assistance would be most beneficial for their future operations and sustainability.
Year Two (July 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024)
Selected organizations may receive resources to support the additional training and assistance identified in their action plan. Support will be provided to each organization to help them accomplish their goals over the course of the second year.
- Organization identifies as either an Arts, Cultural or Humanities Organization.
- Arts Organizations are defined as an organization whose primary mission and purpose is focused on the arts.
- Cultural Organizations are defined as organizations whose primary mission and purpose is culturally focused or meets the definition of the interpretive sciences.
- Humanities Organizations are defined as an organization whose primary mission is focused on the humanities.
- Organization is located and incorporated in Iowa under the Iowa Nonprofit Corporation Act and holds federal 501(c)3 tax-exempt status.
- Organization has an active registration to do business in the State of Iowa with the Secretary of State’s Office.
Overall Operational Standards
- Organizations must have annual cash operating expenses of less than $500,000 at the time of application based on their last completed fiscal year.
- Organization must have a minimum of one dedicated staff or volunteer position that works for the organization year round and is responsible for oversight and management of the organization.
- Organization must have been in existence since June 1, 2019.
- Organizations who receive funding through the Cultural Leadership Partners (CLP) program are eligible to participate, but preference will be given to organizations outside the CLP network.
Online Application Submission
Applicants must submit an application via the Iowa Arts Council’s SlideRoom, an online application portal. Applications will not be accepted in any other format. Late, incomplete or ineligible applications will not be accepted. Applicants can access the current online application requirements at iowaartscouncil.slideroom.com. Applicants must create a login to view the full application requirements for the program. Applicants can visit help.liaisonedu.com for technical assistance related to the online submission.
Applications determined to be eligible will be referred to a review by a panel of Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs staff. Applications are reviewed and ranked based on the published scoring rubric. The panel will select applicants to participate in the program based on their scores. Decisions of the panel are final and may not be appealed due to dissatisfaction.
Applicants will be notified of decisions via email by July 1, 2022. Applicants are notified of the status of their application whether they are or are not selected to participate. Applicants will be contacted if any additional information is required and are encouraged to refrain from contacting staff for application status updates until final decisions are made.