MRAC uses a peer-panel process to thoughtfully evaluate applications and make funding recommendations to our board of directors. Each year, we seek panelists to support the most critical components of our funding process. To learn more about our process and if this is something you would enjoy, check out the information here and let us know if you are interested.

Who can serve as a MRAC panelist?

YOU are a great candidate to be a panelist at MRAC if you:

  • are an artist, are employed or volunteer in the arts, or are an arts enthusiast
  • live in the 7-county Twin Cities Metro area
  • are at least 18 years old and
  • are dedicated to advancing equitable grantmaking across the Twin Cities Metro region

Native American individuals, people of color, and those who bring diverse perspectives are highly encouraged to apply.

If you are a person with a disability we are happy to make accommodations to have you serve as a panelist. Need an ASL interpreter, more breaks built into the day, options to read the proposals in a different format? We will work with you!

We build very diverse panels and therefore seek individuals from a range of artistic disciplines, experiences in community, metro geographies, ages, genders, races, abilities, and ethnicities.

If you are involved with a group that applies to MRAC we would consider you a great panelist, but we also seek individuals who are not directly seeking MRAC funding.

What are the benefits for serving?

Panelists receive thorough training and in exchange for serving on a panel receive a $125 stipend, reimbursement of travel expenses, childcare reimbursement, and lunch on the day of panel. We also thank you for your time and effort to review the grant proposals.

By serving you can expect to:

  • have a greater understanding about what makes a strong grant application
  • meet interesting people who also have an investment in the arts of our community
  • learn about a variety of arts groups, organizations, and projects
  • be empowered and prepared for this role through our trainings and support
  • be respected for your role in this important process

Over 90% of our panelists who serve ask to return again!

How much work is it to be a panelist?

It can easily be 25 hours of your time to serve as a grant review panelist. We acknowledge that this is a big time commitment and ask you to serve once per year at the most, but there is no requirement for serving more than once.

There is a 2 hour in-person training orientation at MRAC where you receive your materials and learn about the grant criteria and how you are to assess your applications.

Approximately 25 applications are assigned to be reviewed on your own time in preparation for your panel day. We estimate that it takes 30-45 minutes to assess each one of these approximately 12 page applications. Panelists are given approximately 4 weeks to review these applications.

On your panel day you will gather at MRAC with up to 7 other panelists who have read the same applications for the in-person review. The panel convenes at 9:00 am and usually concludes by 3:30 pm. You must be at the entire day’s panel review. Panels are scheduled during the week and panelists just serve one day.

How can I learn more about serving the arts community in this way?

If you are new to the MRAC panel and would like to inquire about becoming a panelist, please contact Oskar Ly, Community Connections Manager, at or 651-523-6384. You may submit an inquiry email to introduce yourself and briefly describe your interest or submit your information via this online form.

If you are a returning MRAC panelist, please contact Khin Oo, Office and Panel Coordinator at or 651-645-0402.

Panels are held for four different grant programs (Arts Learning, Arts Project Support, Capital, Organizational Development) from October to June. You may hear from us quickly or it may take a while depending on when you inquire and when it aligns with our needs.

Thanks for your interest in serving the arts community as a MRAC grant review panelist!

THANK YOU TO FY19 Next Step Fund Panelists

Adriana Rimpel, Aki Shibata, Alison Hiltner, Bill Cottman, Christopher Harrison, Dameun Strange, e.g. Bailey, Jennifer Pennington, Malik Watkins, Marlena Myles, Molly Van Avery, Naomi Ko, Pao Houa Her, Rachel Breen, Rafael Gonzalez, Ritika Ganguly, Saymoukda Vongsay, Taja Will

THANK YOU TO FY19 Arts Activities Support Round 2 Panelists

Andi Cheney, Andy Sturdevant, Anton Jones, Audrey Anderson, Audrey Park, Beverly Cottman, Brenda Butler, Bryan Thao Worra, Cigale Ahlquist, Courtney Gerber, Curt Lund, D.A. Bullock, Deborah Jinza Thayer, Divya Karan, Edna Stevens, Emmy Carter, Erik Madsen-Bond, Florence Brammer, Heidi Droegemueller, CFRE, Jeff Hansen, Jenea Rewertz-Targui, John Bueche, Julia Brown, Kate Sheldon, Kevin Yang, Kim Peterson, Lauren White, Loren Niemi, Mai Yang, Malia Cole, Mary Barghout, Max Erickson, Michael Robins, Monica Cruz Zorrilla, Nakita Kirchner, Quinn Villagomez, Robin Gillette, Roseanne Pereira, Samantha Sencer-Mura, Sara Endalew, Sha Cage, Stanton Wood, Susan Rotilie, Suzanne Roberts, Takara Henegar, Teresa Mock, Ying Lee

THANK YOU TO FY19 Arts Learning Round 2 Panelists

Berit Ahlgren, Carla Steen, Carol Sirrine, Chavonn Williams Shen, Cross, Hannah Walsh, Ian Vaver, Jon Rees, Julia Gay, Julie Zhou, Julie Strand, Justin Christy, Kealoha Ferreira, Leslie Carey, Lisa Dejoras, Mailee Vue, Melissa Brechon, Oleksandra Norwick, Stephani Atkins, Sun Yung Shin, Susan Tarnowski, Tommy Sar, Val Lockhart

THANK YOU TO FY19 Community Arts Round 2 Panelists

Alneida Madrigal, Aryca Myers, Brenna Depies, Brett Day, Brian Stephenson, Brittenany Gillespie, Cam Yang, Chanida Phaengdara Potter, Dan Pinkerton, Essma Imady, Heather Barringer, Ini Augustine, Dr. Joyce Broderson, Kate Lucas, Kate Mohn, Kelli Miles, Kit Leffler, Larry Weinberg, Lia Rivamonte, Maia Maiden, Margo Gray, Marisa XiuKuauhtli Martinez, Mary Jo Lewis, Michelle Chang, Mike Brown, Momoko Tanno, Naomi Crocker, Nikkyra Whittaker, Nkuli Shongwe, Pam Russell, Paul Eastwold, Sophie Peyton, Tree Croyle Johnson, Tri Vo, Xiaolu Wang, Ying Vu

THANK YOU TO FY19 Arts Learning Round 1 Panelists

Alexandra Nicome, AP Paulson, Bao Vue, Brittany Keefe, Bryan Boyce, Caitlin Hammel, Caroline Taiwo, Carrie Hendrickson, Christian Novak, Drea Reynolds, Ellen Fee, Houa Lor, Jenny Keight, Jocelyn McQuirter, Kat Vang, Kate Fisher, Kinzie Longley, Leslie Barlow, Naheeda Hirji-Waliji, Natalia Vargas Marquez, Ryan-Olivia McCoy, Zeena Fuleihan, Zhen Zou

THANK YOU TO FY19 Community Arts Round 1 Panelists

Abby Frank Taylor, Andrea Sanow, Arneshia Williams, Betsy Mowry Voss, Carolyn Phelps, Daniel Tran, Dee Baskin, Ella Kampelman, Grace Berke, Hannah Gary, Heather Peebles, Hlee Lee, Jacqueline Nuzzo, Jake Anderson, Jeff Ambroz, Junauda Petrus, Karyssa Jackson, Kathleen Conroy, LaDonna Morrison, Leah Battin, Leslie O’Neill, Linda Snouffer, Lisa Berman, Maja Weidmann, Melissa Bleecker, Prabana Balapuwaduge Mendis, Sarah Borchers, Tiffany Xiong, Tikki Brown, Yumi Inomata

THANK YOU TO FY19 Capital Panelists

Amy Hero Jones, Anne Bertram, Candida Gonzalez, Dara Syrkin, Erika Eklund, Gary Peterson, Kris     Sorensen, Lin Nelson-Mayson, Lue Vang, Lynne Beck, Mina Kinukawa, Pam Russell, Rick Shiomi, Sarah Hayes, Sarah Peters, Xianping He

THANK YOU TO FY19 Arts Activities Support Round 1 Panelists

Adrienne Doyle, Amelia Foster, Ann Spencer, Anna Ostroushko, Bob Peskin, Caitlin Hammel, Chai Lee, Chandler Daily, Chris Garza, Daisuke Kawachi, Dan Peltzman, David Kang, Dawne Brown White, Denise Tennen, Elin Anderson, Emma Kasiga, Eri Isomura, Erika Dani, Fatima Camara, Haley Cramer, Hawona Sullivan Janzen, Heather Peebles, Jamie Marshall, Julia Hobart, Karla Arredondo-Payan, Kasey Payette, Kate Hujda, Laura Leffler, Mai Vang, Marggie Ogas, Martha West, Mike Alberti, Nancy Cook, Nina Robinson, Nora Riemenschneider, Pete Driessen, Prabana Balapuwaduge Mendis, Reona Berry, Sara Kleinsasser Tan, Sophie Liu-Othmer, Teqen Zea-Aida, Tisidra Jones