Barbara Schaffer Bacon co-directs Animating Democracy, a program of Americans for the Arts that inspires, informs, promotes, and connects arts and culture as potent contributors to community, civic, and social change. Currently she is also serving as interim vice president for Americans for the Arts Local Arts Advancement programs. Barbara has written, edited, and contributed to many publications including Civic Dialogue, Arts & Culture: Findings from Animating Democracy; Case Studies from Animating Democracy; Animating Democracy: The Artistic Imagination as a Force for Civic Dialogue. She has served as a primary instructor for the Fundamentals and Advanced Local Arts Management seminars and was a contributor to Fundamentals of Local Arts Management and The Cultural Planning Work Kit. A consultant in program design and evaluation, Barbara has served as an adviser for state and national arts agencies and private foundations. She has delivered presentations and workshops nationally and internationally in Canada, Australia, and England. Barbara previously served as executive director of the Arts Extension Service at the University of Massachusetts. She is president of the Arts Extension Institute, Inc. Barbara served for 14 years on the Belchertown, MA school committee. She was recently appointed by the Governor Deval Patrick to serve as a member of the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
Pam Korza, Animating Democracy Co-director
Pam Korza co-directs Animating Democracy, a program of Americans for the Arts that inspires, informs, promotes, and connects arts and culture as potent contributors to community, civic, and social change. She co-wrote Civic Dialogue, Arts & Culture: Findings from Animating Democracy, and the Arts & Civic Engagement Tool Kit. She co-edited Critical Perspectives: Writings on Art & Civic Dialogue, as well as the five-book Case Studies from Animating Democracy. She has consulted and offered workshops and presentations on the principles and practices of arts and civic engagement for artists, cultural organizations, funders, and at cross-sector gatherings across the country as well as at colleges and universities. In 2008, Pam participated in a professional exchange with public art professionals in Beijing, Shanghai, and Harbin, China and as a keynote speaker about community arts at an international conference in Shanghai. In 2010, she was one of three international keynote speakers at a conference on Local Regeneration and Community Arts in Seoul, South Korea. Pam serves as a National Advisory Board member for Imagining America, a consortium of colleges and universities that supports public scholarship and practice to strengthen the public role and democratic purposes of the humanities, arts, and design through mutually beneficial campus-community partnerships. Pam previously worked with the Arts Extension Service (AES) at the University of Massachusetts, a national service organization that promotes community development through the arts. While at AES, she coordinated the National Public Art Policy Project in cooperation with the National Endowment for the Arts, which culminated in the publication Going Public: A field guide to developments in art in public places, a publication she co-wrote and edited. She also directed the New England Film & Video Festival.
Joanna Chin, Animating Democracy Program Coordinator
Joanna joined Americans for the Arts in 2009 as program coordinator for Animating Democracy. As program coordinator, Joanna is responsible for advancing arts-based civic engagement through coordination and development of communication, convenings, research, and other program services for constituents. Before coming to Americans for the Arts, Joanna was a government and community relations intern at Stanford University. As such, she played a central role in cross-departmental communication, event planning, publication production, and the cultivation of community support for university interests. She has also worked in outreach and communications for the innovative nonprofit, HopeLab; as a research assistant for Stanford political science professor, Stephen Krasner; and as a gallery assistant at Galerie Maeght in Paris. Joanna graduated with honors from Stanford University receiving a B.A. in international relations and a minor in studio art. Her award-winning thesis, "Embodying and Inspiring Change: The Common Threads of Art, Quilting, and Memorialization in the AIDS Memorial Quilt," explores the dynamic role of the quilt as a memorial, piece of art, and reflection of the changing HIV/AIDS epidemic in America.In her free time, Joanna enjoys playing the piano and French horn, cooking, horseback riding, traveling, painting, and photography.
Animating Democracy frequently involves artists, cultural leaders, dialogue and evaluation professionals, and community leaders in the design, planning, and implementation of Animating Democracy activities.
Interested in joining the team as an intern or graduate assistant?
Check out internship opportunities with Animating Democracy on the Americans for the Arts internship page.