Dear Arts Corps Staff, Board, and Community,
I first want to say that I hate that I have to send this email. It never crossed my mind that when I took on the role of board president that this would be something I would have to do, and yet here we are.
You know by now, but I want to share with you that we understand that some changes have been made with the structure and staffing of Arts Corps. The Board has been working to understand the ideas and concerns that have been brought to our attention. We understand that some concerns are valid and we are taking steps to implement solutions to address those various concerns.
We know these are not popular changes. We know that it will cause disruption. But we want you to know we are also in agreement about many of the new structural ideas that have been developed by some Staff. We actually are closer to agreement than many of you recognize. It is not solely the WHAT we are challenged by, it is the HOW.
It has become clear that the method used to implement those changes were not inclusive in the way of Arts Corps’ values. We also understand that some of the methods used to voice some concerns were not productive, including publicly complaining about the organization on social media channels and in the office within earshot of other staff, third parties and youth participants. Evidence is showing that this behavior has continued.
These methods of voicing complaints is not productive in moving towards healing and reconciliation. We expect (and welcome) complaints and concerns pertaining to the Executive Director be brought to the Board (per the Staff Handbook) so that we can work through issues in a productive, private and compassionate way.
Please know that the Board of Directors main role is to protect the organization.We all truly love Arts Corps. It is that love alone that drives us to support decisions that not all agree with, but we are also legally responsible for Arts Corps and James reports directly to us. We are working very closely with him to support and help navigate through this new time and vision. Arts Corps is strong and we believe very deeply in what it stands for. We will be okay. We believe in it and the staff. We ask that you believe as well.
If you have any questions or concerns about any of the decisions that have been made, please reach out to us, specifically me, Tanisha Brandon-Felder (Board President).
“One must know not just how to accept a gift, but with what grace to share it.”