• Meet the New Arts In Education Coordinator, Casey Polczynski

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (PDF)
    Contact: Margaret Vanderhye, Executive Director
    (804) 225-3132, margaret.vanderhye@vca.virginia.gov

    Richmond, Virginia - The Virginia Commission for the Arts welcomes Dr. Casey Polczynski as our new Arts in Education program coordinator. Casey comes to the Commission from the Virginia Museum of Fine Art where she served this past year as an adjunct faculty member and an educational assistant. From 2011-2013, Casey was the Program Coordinator / Educator for the ArtSmarts program with Richmond City schools and the Museum. She was the fine arts subject leader at the Ras Al Khaimah English Speaking School in the United Arab Emirates from 2009-2011 where she helped develop and manage their arts program.

    Casey received her doctorate in Education in 2013. She is a trained arts educator with extensive experience in both the public and private K-12 school systems here and abroad. She has mentored student teachers at Virginia Commonwealth University and has used her considerable administrative and organizational skills to develop state and national arts conference sessions and to lead several presentations herself.

    Trained as a studio artist, Casey is s stone carver; she views her carving as “a personal metaphor for life in reducing forms to their essence and innate beauty”. She recently joined a schola at her church to learn Gregorian notation and says she was “attracted by the collaborative nature” of Gregorian chant.

    Casey will assume the leadership for the Commission’s Arts in Education grants program and will manage the NEA Poetry Out Loud program throughout Virginia. She will develop and organize special workshops and programs to expand arts education opportunities from pre-K to college level.

     “Casey’s substantial network of arts educators and administrators, college faculty and students, and museum program directors will be a tremendous asset to us at the Virginia Commission for the Arts as we expand and enhance our current programs” said Executive Director Margaret Vanderhye. “She is a great fit for the talented, dedicated, and collaborative staff we have here at the Commission.”

    As of July 21st, Casey can be reached at 804-225-3132 or casey.polczynski@vca.virginia.gov.

    The Virginia Commission for the Arts supports the arts through funding from the Virginia General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.  The Commission distributes grant awards to artists, arts and other not-for-profit organizations, educational institutions, educators and local governments and provides technical assistance in arts management. 

    For further information about the Virginia Commission for the Arts and its programs, contact the Virginia Commission for the Arts, 1001 East Broad Street, Suite 330, Richmond, VA 23219-2010; 804- 225-3132; arts@vca.virginia.gov; www.arts.virginia.gov

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  • Virginia Commission for the Arts congratulates “Play the City” on its recent Our Town grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (PDF)
    Contact: Margaret Vanderhye, Executive Director
    (804) 225-3132, margaret.vanderhye@vca.virginia.gov

    Richmond, Virginia - National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Chairman Jane Chu announced plans to award 66 Our Town grants totaling $5.073 million and reaching 38 states in the Our Town program's fourth year of funding.  Virginia will host one of those projects with funding recommended to the City of Charlottesville for a total of $50,000.

    This year's Our Town projects demonstrate again that excellent art is as fundamental to a community's success as land-use, transportation, education, housing, infrastructure, and public safety, helping build stronger communities that are diverse in geography and character. Our Town funds arts -based community development projects in a way that is authentic, equitable, and augments existing local assets. Since Our Town's inception in 2011 and including these projects, the NEA will have awarded 256 Our Town grants totaling more than $21 million in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

    The NEA grant will support Play the City, a series of public workshops and artist residencies, to enhance neighborhoods in Charlottesville. The project will begin with asset mapping to establish a baseline of artists, activities, infrastructure, and arts organizations in the city. Artists then will be invited to reside in Charlottesville and develop projects that build on the community's assets and celebrate their unique identity. City of Charlottesville, Piedmont Council for the Arts, and Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative will lead community workshops and select the artists that will implement public art and design ideas. This project will engage residents of the Strategic Investment Area, an area of the city designated for targeted investment and improvement. The area is home to 2,968 residents, with 338 public and low-income housing units.

    "The City of Charlottesville, Piedmont Council for the Arts, and Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative demonstrate the best in creative community development and whose work will have a valuable impact on its community,” said Chairman Chu. "Through Our Town funding, arts organizations continue to spark vitality that support neighborhoods and public spaces, enhancing a sense of place for residents and visitors alike." 

    The NEA received 275 applications for Our Town this year. Recommended grant amounts ranged from $25,000 to $200,000. For a complete listing of projects recommended for Our Town grant support, please visit the NEA web site at arts.gov. Project descriptions, grants listed by state and by project type, and resources are available as well.

    The Twitter hashtag is #NEAOurTown14

    The Virginia Commission for the Arts supports the arts through funding from the Virginia General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.  The Commission distributes grant awards to artists, arts and other not-for-profit organizations, educational institutions, educators and local governments and provides technical assistance in arts management. 

    For further information about the Commission and its programs, contact the Virginia Commission for the Arts, 1001 East Broad Street, Suite 330, Richmond, VA 23219-2010; 804- 225-3132; arts@vca.virginia.gov; www.arts.virginia.gov

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  • Virginia Commission for the Arts Welcomes Seven New Board Members

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    Contact: Margaret Vanderhye, Executive Director
    (804) 225-3132, margaret.vanderhye@vca.virginia.gov

    Richmond, Virginia - : Virginia Commission for the Arts welcomes seven new Commissioners today. Governor Terry McAuliffe announced the appointments on June 20th effective July 1st. The Commissioners will join six other members who are also gubernatorial appointees. Eleven Commissioners are appointed according to their respective Congressional Districts and two serve at large for a single five-year term.

    Joining the Commission today for terms concluding June 30th, 2019 are:

    Robert (Bob) Behr, Chincoteague Island: Founder and past president, Chincoteague Cultural Alliance; owner, Island Cottage Collection; artist, educator/administrator.

    Dorothy S. Blackwell, Lexington: Graphic artist and painter; founding member, Rockbridge Studio Tour; founder, Cooperative Gallery of the Nelson Gallery

    Lorita Copeland Daniels, Spotsylvania: Former education specialist, Department of the Air Force.

    Jay Dick, Alexandria: Senior Director of State and Local Government Affairs, Americans for the Arts

    Jo Hodgin, Annandale: Past director, Planning and Initiatives, Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts

    John Rainero, Bristol: Assistant General Manager, Permatile Concrete Products, Inc; Chair, Bristol Convention and Visitors Bureau; Past President, Birthplace of Country Music Alliance

    Grace Han Wolf, Herndon: Member, Herndon town council; immediate past president, Councilfor the Arts of Herndon.

    “We are so pleased to welcome this impressive group of professionals in such different arts disciplines” said Virginia Commission for the Arts Executive Director Margaret Vanderhye. “Each one of them brings a breadth and depth of expertise and experience to the work we do here funding and supporting the arts throughout the Commonwealth”.

    The Commission wishes to acknowledge the seven dedicated Commissioners who have just completed their terms and thank them for their public service on behalf of the arts in Virginia.

    They are: Lisa Alderman, Wytheville; Willie Dell, Richmond; Tina Lea, Virginia Beach; Ann Edwards Rust, Herndon; Marcia Neuhaus Speck, Alexandria; Marcia H. Thalhimer, Richmond; and Ann Bondurant Trinkle, Roanoke.

    The thirteen member Commission board makes funding decisions and provides support and advocacy for arts groups throughout the state.

    The Virginia Commission for the Arts is the state agency that supports the arts through funding from the Virginia General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Commission distributes grant awards to artists, arts and other not-for-profit organizations, educational institutions, educators and local governments, and provides technical assistance in arts management.

    For further information about the Commission and its programs, contact the Virginia Commission for the Arts, 1001 East Broad Street, Suite 330, Richmond, VA 23219-2010; 804- 225-3132; arts@vca.virginia.gov; www.arts.virginia.gov

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