Skip navigation

Oklahoma Arts Council News

January 2020

New Grant Program Offers Funding for Arts Programs Serving Oklahoma Military Community

OKLAHOMA CITY (January 15, 2020) – A new pilot grant program of the Oklahoma Arts Council can help organizations statewide serve military-connected individuals in their communities through the arts. Oklahoma Arts and the Military Grants of up to $5,000 are available.

Read the full news release here.

More Cornerstone Conversations Scheduled in Oklahoma Communities

Two February stops have been added to the schedule of Oklahoma Arts Council community visits for its Cornerstone Conversations tour across the state. Residents in the Weatherford and Idabel areas are invited to participate in the following sessions:

February 13, 5:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Weatherford Public Library
219 E. Franklin Ave.
Weatherford, OK 73096

February 20, 5:00 to 7:30 p.m.
Museum of the Red River
812 E. Lincoln Rd.
Idabel, OK 74745

Open to any Oklahoman wishing to attend, Cornerstone Conversations sessions are presented with local partners. Activities include individual and group exercises and discussion. Attendees are given opportunity to provide written feedback. A 30-minute networking break with light refreshments concludes each session.

There is no cost to attend, however RSVPs are requested. Send an email to or call (405) 521-2040 to reserve your seat.

About Cornerstone Conversations

The Oklahoma Arts Council Cornerstone Conversations tour is designed to empower Oklahomans representing all communities to partner in creating shared goals for using the arts to meet needs in communities and schools across our state. A building block in the creation of the Oklahoma Arts Council's 2021-2025 strategic plan, the tour will allow the Oklahoma Arts Council to listen, learn, and dream with Oklahomans for what is possible for the state through the arts.

More tour stops will be announced soon. Go to for updates, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


The Oklahoma Arts Council wants to accommodate any individual interested in attending a listening session. If you have specific needs, please contact us in advance of a session to let us know how we can accommodate your needs and ensure your ability to fully participate. Send an email to or call (405) 521-2040.

New Resource Available for Oklahoma Route 66 Communities

Oklahoma Lieutenant Governor Matt Pinnell wants to help Route 66 communities take advantage of the historic highway's potential as a community and economic development tool. In December, Pinnell and state travel industry partners hosted the first Route 66 Convention at the Oklahoma History Center. Among the issues discussed were ideas for ways the state could support businesses and cities along the more than 400-mile stretch of Route 66 in Oklahoma.

In response to the Lieutenant Governor's efforts, the Oklahoma Arts Council has created a new resource for Route 66 communities. In "Route 66: Grants and Resources for the Mother Road," the Oklahoma Arts Council explains the inseparable connection between the arts and Route 66, detailing several agency programs available to help stakeholders along the highway benefit from the arts' role in its legacy. Information about grant funding, cultural district development, public art, and professional development opportunities are included.

Download "Route 66: Grants and Resources for the Mother Road."

'Grants for Arts Projects' Offers Up to $100,000 in Funding

The National Endowment for the Arts is offering grants ranging between $10,000 and $100,000 through its Grants for Arts Projects funding category. The category replaces the Endowment's Art Works funding category.

Grants in this category support artistically excellent projects that celebrate creativity and cultural heritage, invite mutual respect for differing beliefs and values, and enrich humanity. Guidelines for the new grant category will be posted in December.

Applications for funding through the category are accepted twice yearly—a second deadline is scheduled for July. The deadline for the first round of Grants for Arts Projects is February 13.

Go to the National Endowment for the Arts website for more information.

$500 for Classrooms through AAE

Grants of up to $500 from the Association of American Educators (AAE) can help Oklahoma educators purchase art supplies and more for their classrooms.

Applications for AAE Classroom Grants are due March 1. To apply, complete the online form on the AAE website, and be sure to upload a document, as required, describing the proposed use of funds. Proposals should detail the materials to be purchased, how the materials will benefit students, and a lesson plan that will make use of the materials.

Go here to learn more and to apply.

Proposals Sought for Bartlesville Public Art

Artist proposals are being sought for a public art installation at Bartlesville's new Tower Center at Unity Square. The budget for the project is $150,000. Project proposals should include a water component.

Situated between Frank Lloyd Wright's famous Price Tower and the Bartlesville Community Center, Tower Center at Unity Square will be an urban green space that will bring the community together through performing arts and other programs. Tower Center is scheduled to open in the coming months. The unveiling of the public art installation is scheduled for fall 2020.

Deadline for artist submissions is January 25. Required application materials include resumes, references, description of proposed vision with budget, and website. A short list of artists will be selected to further develop their proposals for final selection.

Click here for complete details about the project.

African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund Grants

African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund grants from the National Trust for Historic Preservation offer support for select activities at museums and other eligible sites.

Grants ranging from $50,000 to $150,000 can fund capital project, organizational capacity building, project planning, and programming and interpretation. All projects must focus on African American cultural heritage. Public agencies, 501(c)(3) and other nonprofit organizations are eligible to apply.

Letters of intent are due January 15. Applications will be due in May.

Click here to learn more about eligible activities and expenses that can be paid for through the grant program.

Grants for the Creation of New Jazz Works

Chamber Music America is offering grant funding to U.S. jazz ensembles to create, perform, and record new works. Through the 2020 New Jazz Works grant program, ensembles that include 2-10 musicians may apply to the program. New works must be of substantial length, scored for one musician per part, feature improvisation, and result in a printed score, lead sheet or other form of graphic notation.

The creation of a new work and the presentation of two performances that include the work in different venues in the United States could earn awards of up to $19,000.

Additional funding of up to $15,000 is available to support more performances and the production of audio or video recordings. Other components of the grant program could result in funding for administrative support and registration fee support to attend a national conference.

Deadline for submissions is February 7. Go to for details.

Grant Applications to The Kerr Foundation Due Soon

Funding from The Kerr Foundation can support 501(c)(3) nonprofits with their capital projects (brick and mortar), specific programs, and/or operating expenses.

The Oklahoma-based foundation is a nonprofit charitable corporation whose programs focus on education, health, arts and culture, and human services. Through January 17, 2020, letters of inquiry may be submitted by eligible organizations interested in applying for grant funding from the foundation.

Learn more about grants from The Kerr Foundation at

Funding Available to Explore Woody Guthrie's Influence

Up to $5,000 in support is available to individuals to perform research on the life and legacy of one of America's most influential musicians, Oklahoma's Woody Guthrie.

The BMI Foundation and the Woody Guthrie Center have partnered to make possible the Woody Guthrie Fellowship program, providing annual awards for scholarly research at the extensive Woody Guthrie Archives in Tulsa. The archives feature the largest collection in the world of primary resource material on Guthrie. Materials include original songwriting notebooks, journals, manuscripts, photographs, correspondences, artwork, audio recordings, and more.

Projects funded through the fellowship program have culminated in books, essays, public performances, artwork, classroom materials, and more.

Applicants must have a project-based research topic that leads to the creation of an original scholarly publication or product. The project should require at least two weeks of research at the Woody Guthrie Archives.

Applications must be submitted no later than January 31, 2020.

Webinar Series Can Help Nonprofits Improve Disability Inclusion

A series of free webinars scheduled through January 15 can help nonprofit organizations gain essential tools, skills, and knowledge needed to advance disability inclusion in their work.

Offered by RespectAbility in partnership with leading national thinkers on equity in the nonprofit space, the webinars provide step-by-step guidance, resources, and contacts to assist nonprofits with their inclusion efforts.

Webinar dates and topics include:

  • Tuesday, January 7
    "How to Ensure Accessible Websites, Social Media and Inclusive Photos

  • Thursday, January 9
    "Premium Skills Workshop in Social Media Accessibility"

  • Wednesday, January 15
    "How to Ensure Legal Rights and Compliance Obligations"

Previously presented webinars are also available on-demand, including Disability 101, Disability History, and How to Ensure Accessible Events.

Visit to RSVP for the webinars.

2020 Census Important to Oklahoma Arts Funding

An accurate count of Oklahomans in the 2020 census is vital to ensuring our state receives its proper share of federal funding. Among the federal support received in Oklahoma is investment through the National Endowment for the Arts. In fiscal year 2019, the federal arts agency awarded a total of $878,650 in grant funding to Oklahoma organizations. Their funding is a significant part of the Oklahoma Arts Council budget, enabling us to reach under-resourced areas of our state through our grants and programs.

Oklahoma nonprofit arts organizations and others in the state arts industry are urged to help promote participation in Census 2020. Participation will be made available online, through the mail, and by phone. The Census begins in January and runs through April.

Look for more information soon about participating in and promoting Census 2020.

Note: The Census is a constitutional requirement of the federal government. It is not used for law enforcement. It ensures that communities and states get fair representation at the federal level.

Economic Opportunity Challenge

Through the Economic Opportunity Challenge, proposals for improving economic opportunity, security, and/or mobility for individuals in the United States may earn grants of $100,000. A $10 million grant will be awarded to one finalist to scale their proposed solution aimed at improving financial health of low-income families. The aim of the challenge is to build a more vibrant economic ecosystem through impactful, evidence-based solutions.

Teams should be led by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a budget of at least $1 million .

Oklahoma applicants are encouraged to leverage the transformative power of the arts and arts education in their proposal.

Learn more here.

Oklahoma Arts Council Seeks Finance Director

Applications are currently being accepted by the Oklahoma Arts Council for the position of Finance Director. Individuals with experience in financial accounting, budgeting, cash management, and other listed fiscal operations and functions may apply.

Duties of the Finance Director include supervising internal controls for receipts and expenditures, preparing agency payroll using the state's PeopleSoft system, serving as the agency's Certified Procurement Officer, managing office inventory and equipment, and more.

Candidates should have a comprehensive knowledge of accounting principles and practice and be versed in GAAP for state governments. A working knowledge of Oklahoma's PeopleSoft accounting system is essential.

The Oklahoma Arts Council strives to build a diverse team comprised of the best and brightest individuals to support our mission. For a detailed position description and set of application instructions, go to the jobs page at

The Oklahoma Arts Council is an Equal Opportunity Employer.