Earlier this month, the Colorado Creative Industries team held their annual summit in Steamboat Springs. With about 275 people in attendance in person and even more virtually, the event was a success in bringing together the Colorado arts community. Conversations ranged from how arts and culture play a role in activism and community wellbeing, to practical legal and business best practices for artists, to how funding opportunities and arts advocacy can help to better meet the needs of communities across the state.
The pandemic highlighted the important role that the arts play in ensuring communities stay connected, resilient, and vibrant during the most difficult of times. It also exposed cracks in support structures and fragilities within the industry. The Creative Industries Summit provided an opportunity for professionals from across the sector to come together to reflect on what the industry has been through in the last 18 months and where it will go in the future. We look forward to turning these conversations into action and engaging artists across sectors to better understand how we create structures that support all of our communities.
As a part of the summit, we also celebrated the graduation of our latest class of Change Leaders. CCI's Colorado Change Leader Program teaches cultural and community leaders how to handle change in organizations, communities, and their daily lives. After completing a Change Leader Certification Project using creative solutions to address social and community needs, individuals become certified Change Leaders.
From left to right: Deborah Malden, Caitlyn Love, Jill MacKay, Dagny McKinley, Katy Iwanowski, Helanius Wilkins, and Mary Elizabeth Lenahan. Not pictured: Sandra Dolak, Gillian Laycock, and Emily Whalen.