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Public Conversations is an ongoing series of community forums designed to convene Charlotte-area residents for discussion of timely and relevant topics. Our goal is to create comfortable settings that encourage a stimulating and enlightening exchange of ideas. By organizing these Public Conversations, WFAE intends to serve as a catalyst for community dialogue. Participants are encouraged to engage in conversation with a cross-section of community representatives, expert panelists, and with each other.

Charlotte's Arts And Culture Groups: How Can They Survive... And Thrive?

James Willamor

Arts and cultural organizations in Charlotte are struggling financially in the wake of the recession and cutbacks in community funding and donations.    Many of these non-profits have had to reduce staff and cut costs and services.   A few organizations have suspended all or parts of their operations, and others say they have little or no cash reserves to sustain them through any future financial droughts. 

This WFAE Public Conversation explored the challenges faced by these organizations, how they hope to build a stronger future, and what’s at stake for the community.

Many of Charlotte’s arts, culture and science groups are exploring new methods and models for doing business and maximizing their resources. A Cultural Life Task Force is looking for ways to strengthen the arts and culture sector.  

Kathleen Jameson, Executive Director – Mint Museum

Pat Riley, Co-Chair – Charlotte-Mecklenburg Cultural Life Task Force
Jim Warren, Executive Director – Carolina Raptor Center
Mark Rumsey, News Host - WFAE