The executive director of the Minot Area Council of the Arts will be among arts supporters testifying before a congressional committee at an "Arts Build Communities" hearing this month.
Terri Aldrich will join an Emmy-nominated actor, Philadelphia's mayor and others in appearing before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on the Interior, chaired by Rep. James Moran, D-Va. The hearing is scheduled for the morning of April 13 as part of Arts Advocacy Day 2010 at the U.S. Capitol.
Aldrich said she was invited to speak by Americans for the Arts, which is one of the sponsors of the event. The organization was familiar with Minot because of a study conducted in Minot in 2007 through Americans for the Arts on the impact of arts in the community.
"The way that arts are part of the fabric of the community was a good illustration for what they wanted to say," said Aldrich, who will be speaking about the impact of arts on rural communities.
The 2007 study showed the arts were an $8.6 million industry in Minot, creating 188 full-time equivalency jobs. The arts prompted $363 million in taxable expenditures on the local level and $476,000 on the state level. Those numbers are conservative today because of the growth that the Minot Area Council of the Arts has seen in the past few years, Aldrich said.
Minot is a strong arts community with a variety of opportunities to access various types of art at a reasonable cost, she said.
"It enhances the quality of life that, in turn, makes our community a more attractive place to live and to work or to locate your business," she said.
Americans for the Arts is funding Aldrich's travel to Washington, D.C. She has attended previous Arts Advocacy Day events, but this will be her first experience in offering congressional testimony. Others scheduled to speak on behalf of Americans for the Arts are Kyle MacLachlan, film and stage actor; Brig. Gen. Nolen Bivens, retired U.S. Army; Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter; Charles Segars, CEO of Ovation TV; and Robert Lynch, president and CEO, Americans for the Arts.
Arts Advocacy Day brings more than 400 grassroots arts supporters from across the Untied States to Capitol Hill to advocate for pro-arts legislation.