Recent Management Consulting Fund Grant Awards

FY 2017 Management Consulting Fund

In FY 2017 MRAC Awarded 38 Management Consulting Fund grants in the amount of $56,950. These grants of up to $1500 allow arts groups the opportunity to work with a consultant to strengthen an arts management challenge to the organization. The grants have a monthly deadline and are awarded each month; this list represents all the groups receiving funding in the FY 2017 fiscal year not divided by month of the award.

Dakota County

Caponi Art Park $1,500.00
Funding to hire Jack Becker of Forecast Public Art to help the board identify the strategic challenges facing the organization and its 3-5 yr. goals, and to make recommendations for an in-depth strategic planning process to help it achieve those goals.

Eagan Art Festival $1,500.00
Funding to engage a consultant to strengthen the board by looking at board governance, volunteerism, and board roles in the organization for future success.

Rosemount Area Arts Council $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Lisa Peterson to properly set up a QuickBooks accounting system.


20% Theatre Company $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Autumn Brown to facilitate four sessions at extended FY17 board meetings to help the board continue navigating strategic planning/strategic intention work that came out of the June 2016 retreat.

Alternative Motion Project $1,500.00
Funding to hire Creation In Common (CIC) to help lay the groundwork for a 2-year fundraising plan.

Art Shanty Projects $1,500.00
Funding to hire Next in Nonprofits to help build the organization’s individual donor database as part of a comprehensive development plan to support strategic growth initiatives.

Foci Minnesota Center for Glass Arts $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Sheila Terryll to help the organization identify staffing needs and design an executive director position.

Metropolitan Boys Choir $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant, James McDonough, to develop and implement a strategy to address the specific organizational challenge of identifying and securing increased tuition assistance for boys in need of financial help.

Monkeybear’s Harmolodic Workshop $1,500.00
Funding to work with a consultant to help define needs, vision, values and goals.

Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association $1,500.00
Funding to conduct a technology assessment of NEMAA’s tech platforms, including website, server, a CRM platform, software, and cloud-based applications.

Patrick’s Cabaret $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Kirstin Wiegmann to help the Board of Directors, Board Committees, and staff develop information-sharing, accountability, and coaching processes to put all of the pieces of the strategic planning into play.

Six Families $1,500.00
Funding to redesign the accounting system in an effort to be more transparent, accountable, and professional. This redesign will take the form of a series of meetings with consultant Bethany Gladhill to discuss long- and short-term financial plans, implement an accounting software, and train all of the Six Families board members in using the new system.

Small Art $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Betsy Altheimer on part one of a two-part strategic growth planning process.

Southern Theater $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultants to determine the specific scope and costs for building renovations that will result in full ADA compliance. These findings will be used to set the goals and map the work of The Southern Theater’s upcoming capital campaign and building upgrades.

Sparkle Theatricals $1,500.00
Funding to work with web design/marketing consultant Amy Jacobus and develop a strategic project guide for the future website design/build.

Take-Up Productions $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Scott Artley to conduct a comprehensive ADA audit of the Trylon Microcinema. The audit will directly impact renovations to the cinema, which will occur in Summer 2017.

The DIAL Group $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Kadra Abdi to help facilitate a group strategic planning process in order to acquire nonprofit status.

The Minneapolis Art Lending Library $1,500.00
Funding to hire the consulting group Next in Nonprofits to conduct comparative data analysis on some key metrics for its donors, lenders, and borrowers in order to better understand the profile of current MALL audiences.

Vega Productions $1,500.00
Funding to help cover the costs of a story writing session that will help the organization to realign with the needs of our stakeholders and sets the stage for organization-level strategic planning work scheduled for the second half of 2017.

Saint Paul

Grace Minnesota $1,500.00
Funding to seek professional advice around intellectual property issues to gain a better understanding of options for rightful ownership and stewardship of two non-traditional, ongoing works of behavioral art.

JazzMN, Inc. $1,500.00
Funding to engage the services of a strategic consultant who will guide the board through a visioning and direction-setting process. This information will be used by the JazzMN strategic planning committee and the full board to best determine a future sustainable path forJazzMN.

Lyra Baroque Orchestra $1,500.00
Funding for training on intelligently expanding board membership and building capacity to govern effectively.

Minnesota Haitian Cultural Center $1,500.00
Funding to work with Sandy Moore to support two priorities: grant seeking efforts and a three-year sustainability plan to provide an ongoing foundation for planning and decision making.

Mizna $1,500.00
Funding to undertake a day-long retreat, facilitated by Sharon Rodning Bash to focus on board and staff development and to develop a new Strategic Plan.

Wonderlust Productions $1,500.00
Funding to work with an outside facilitator to design and document management processes to reflect company values in the future for all projects; human resources templates and dialogue processes will be developed.

Suburban Hennepin County

Chain Reaction Theatre Project $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Amy Danielson to guide, train and help the organization in learning how to plan, develop and implement marketing/PR plans.

Diversity Street Dancers $1,500.00
Funding to work with Access Philanthropy to develop the organization’s fundraising expertise and capacity.

Eclectic Edge Ensemble $1,500.00
Funding to hire Creation In Common to facilitate a staff and board retreat to create a work plan to increase organizational capacity.

Sod House Theater $1,500.00
Funding to support Robin Gillette to work with Sod House artistic directors to design a balanced revenue model.

St. Louis Park Friends of the Arts $1,450.00
Funding for a financial training project for record-keeping and reporting, and fiscal agency agreements through MAP for Nonprofits.

Wayzata Symphony Orchestra $1,500.00
Funding to work with a consultant to plan and implement a one day retreat to evaluate and define roles for board, staff, and organizational success.

Suburban Ramsey County

Brownbody $1,500.00
Funding to work with Jodie Tanaka of Tempo Creative Consultants on the development of a communications plan for its upcoming spring 2017 programming.

Contempo Physical Dance $1,500.00
Funding to work with Amy Danielson to design a results-oriented, replicable, social-media intensive communications plan that Contempo can continue to implement when the consultancy is completed.

Lakeshore Players $1,500.00
Funding to work with a consultant to create sustainable accounting systems to strengthen the operations and allow artistic quality to remain strong and viable.

The Show Art Gallery $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Jammi Hansen Blair on the development of a pre-planning project for a larger Organizational Development request focused on a 4-year fundraising plan.

Twin Cities Horn Club $1,500.00
Funding to conduct a strategic planning process with a facilitator to plot out the next steps for TCHC following our amazing first three years as a community musical organization!

Washington County

Children’s Performing Arts $1,500.00
Funding to hire a consultant to help develop an annual budgeting process and provide the organization with tools to continue this work in the future.

StoryArk $1,500.00
Funding to hire a consultant to navigate FCC regulations regarding soliciting underwriting and sponsorships and to weigh options for going forward as a 501(c)(3) organization or a fiscally sponsored organization.

FY 2016 Management Consulting Fund

In FY 2016, the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council Awarded $53,550 to 36 arts organizations in the Management Consulting Fund program, which provides grants of up to $1,500 small consulting projects that strengthen the management or administration of the group. The following is a complete list of grantees sorted by county of affiliation. Please note that MRAC separates the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul from the surrounding suburban Hennepin and suburban Ramsey counties.

Anoka County

Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts                        $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Ann Benrud to assess the current procedures and materials and then build a plan for increased media contacts and more effective marketing efforts.

Dakota County

Caponi Art Park                               $1,500.00
Funding to work with Trebuchet Communications to lead the board through a revision of organizational mission statement, visual re-branding, and marketing strategies.


Art Shanty Projects                         $1,500.00
Funding for a two-tiered customized training with Table Fort and Nonprofits Assistance Fund (NAF) to provide a strategic visioning session and financial management, respectively.

Zorongo Flamenco Dance Theatre                                  $1,500.00
Funding to hire an arts management consultant to help develop a new vision statement, set organizational priorities, and develop a three-year strategic plan.

ARENA DANCES, Inc.                                   $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Bobby Maher to work with the Board of Directors and Marketing Committee to cultivate statewide presenting relationships.

The Dream Songs Project                          $1,500.00
Funding to hire consulting firm Good Work Group, to hone organizational messaging and create a cohesive marketing strategy.

The Arts’ Nest                                  $1,400.00
Funding to hire Jennifer Kramm of MAP for Nonprofits to meet with the board of directors and help define roles and future goals.

Motionpoems, Inc.                          $1,500.00
Funding to hire Redpath consultant Jeff Fenner to teach the Motionpoems team how to properly set up and implement the Salesforce database management system.

Nimbus Theatre                              $1,500.00
Funding to hire Robin Gillette to help craft a fundraising strategy for a new space capital campaign and to identify future fundraising and grant opportunities.

Young Dance, Inc.                            $1,500.00
Funding to work with Bethany Gladhill to develop an Individual Giving Campaign to be implemented in 2016-17.

Kulture Klub Collaborative                                   $1,250.00
Funding to work with Carolyn Bye to facilitate a daylong staff and board planning retreat designed to review and affirm Kulture Klub Collaborative’s mission and brand, develop an overarching vision/goal for the next phase of the organization and outline a strategic plan of action for FY2017-FY2021.

Public Functionary                         $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Brittany Lynch, to activate, engage, and develop a new board of directors for the growing organization, during an important time of transition and momentum.

Twin Cities Media Alliance                                   $1,500.00 /
Funding to work with consultant John Capecci to develop a two-year messaging plan and tools that will enable TCMA stakeholders to communicate messages that are clear, memorable, engaging, repeatable, consistent and personalized.

The Apollo Club                              $1,500.00
Funding to work with development consultant Angela Tangen, to educate and train the board of directors in strategic fund development efforts.

Grace Minnesota                             $1,500.00
Funding to work with Jamie Schumacher to assess operations and capacities and help determine the organizational vision, in order to create a mini-strategic plan for the next 12 months.

Patrick’s Cabaret                             $1,500.00
Funding to work with Kirstin Wiegman to develop a strategic operations plan.

St. Stephen’s Human Services                               $1,500.00
Funding to work with organizational development consultant Lecia Grossman on the beginnings of a 5 year strategic plan. Activities include a guided environmental scan and 2 in-depth planning meetings with stakeholders culminating in a timeline and workplan for completing a 5 year strategic plan.

Theatre Unbound                            $1,500.00
Funding to work with Saint Paul based marketing/PR firm Ainsley Shea to facilitate the annual board/staff retreat with the goal of developing a Strategy Brief becoming the blueprint for re-branding and marketing.

Twin Cities Women’s Choir                                 $1,500.00
Funding to work with Sheila Terryll of Wiser Wolf Consulting to further develop event and season sponsorships.

Open Eye Figure Theatre                           $1,500.00
Funding to work with software developer William T Miller, to develop a design spec for a custom donor management software solution.

Saint Paul

Minnesota Bach Ensemble                                    $1,400.00
Funding for multiple training sessions with website consultant Chris Goldstein, in order to redesign current website using Squarespace as a platform.

Walker West Music Academy                              $1,500.00
Funding to engage consultant Damon Shoholm of Wilder Center for Communities to facilitate a one-day board retreat in September 2015.

Lyra Baroque Orchestra                            $1,500.00
Funding to hire Kim Snyder to provide fundraising training that will clarify expectations, empower current board and staff, and establish an ongoing organizational approach to philanthropy consistent with Lyra’s values and goals.

Arts Us                                  $1,500.00
Funding to work with an accountant from MAP for Nonprofits to bring the organization’s financial policies into compliance with state laws and educate the administration about best practices moving forward.

Pathway Learning Center, Inc.                              $1,500.00
Funding to work with arts fundraising consultant May Lee-Yang to help develop a fundraising road map and train three board members in grant writing.

Saint Paul Vocal Forum                             $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Margaret Hasse to validate and refresh the organization’s mission and vision, and create a multi-year strategic work plan.

Creative Enterprise Zone                          $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Meredith Fox to create an action oriented work plan based on their (existing) strategic goals, to foster artists in their neighborhood.

Suburban Hennepin County

Yellow Tree Theatre                                  $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Amanda White to assist in improving upon the administrative staffing structure, allowing for more efficiency, more manageable workloads and better administrative practices.

United Artist Collaborative                                   $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Dr. James McDonough for the “Developing a Fund Raising Plan” Project which will include: Documents Review and Organizational Assessment interviews with Board Members; Group Consultation Work Sessions; and a Follow-up Consultation with Board Chair and Executive Committee.

Chain Reaction Theatre Project                           $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Margaret Hasse, to guide the organization through a board development process.

Angelica Cantanti Youth Choirs                           $1,500.00
Funding to hire Julia Classen to provide a series of workshops to the current Board of Directors and key staff of the organization.

Rosetown Playhouse                                  $1,500.00
Funding to work with Danette Olsen Consulting to create a Strategic Action Plan to re-establish partnerships with venues and community partners, check in with stakeholders, do a self-evaluation, and reorganize the general operating structure.

Brownbody                          $1,500.00
Funding to work with Entertainment, intellectual property, and business attorney, Blake Iverson to guide the Brownbody team in creating contract templates that protect the organization and its intellectual property in future engagements.

Lakeshore Players                          $1,500.00
Funding to work with Kathy Blegen-Huntly to update their 2013-15 Strategic Plan during a one day board retreat.

Washington County

ArtReach St. Croix                           $1,500.00
Funding to hire consultant Christine Hammes from MAP for Nonprofits to help create an updated Strategic Action Plan.

Vets for Music                                 $1,500.00
Funding to work with consultant Terry Valesquez to teach Board members best practices and policies to obtain and implement sponsorship packages.