Nothing frees the creativity of an arts organization like having the business side of its house in order. ArtsFund supports financial stability through annual awards of operating support as well as an additional funding initiative for project-based support.

How the Annual Grant Allocations Process Works

ArtsFund’s thorough grant-making process involves professional grant makers from our largest corporate donors (Microsoft Corporation, Starbucks Coffee Company, Wells Fargo, etc.) and several private philanthropists who serve on the Allocations Committee Arts organizations make a full application every other year. Those on a full application year submit a comprehensive application and are interviewed by the Allocations Committee. Applicants are rated on three core factors: mission and the art; management and financial condition; and community impact. For organizations on an interim report year, reports are reviewed by ArtsFund staff.


ArtsFund annual grants are institutionally oriented, operational grants for organizations that present or produce a season of programs. Application is by invitation only, and organizations must meet minimum eligibility requirements for funding consideration including the following:

Note: Meeting the requirements does not guarantee funding. Criteria are subject to change.

  • Be incorporated as a Washington state non-profit 501(c)(3) organization operating in the performing, visual or related arts
  • Have a minimum 3-year record of continuous operation in King or Pierce County
  • Have a board of directors consisting primarily of members who are not paid employees of the organization
  • Have at least one professional, paid, full-time management staff member (No more than two staff members may combine for one FTE)
  • Have an annual operating budget, averaged over three years, of at least $200,000 if operating in King County, or $100,000 if operating in Pierce County. In-Kind does not count towards the annual operating budget threshold
  • Provide more than 50% of its services in King and/or Pierce Counties
  • Have an audited financial statement for the year preceding the award year on which an opinion has been expressed by an independent certified public accountant; or, have financial reports for the year preceeding the application year, signed by the board treasurer


  • Individual Artists (except through Artist Trust)
  • Children’s Museums, Arts Camps
  • Public Broadcasting
  • Arts Festivals of less than 10 days in duration
  • Guilds, unions, or arts service organizations whose mission is to provide technical assistance
  • Organizations whose primary mission is historic preservation
  • Organizations whose performing/presenting artists are children
  • Educational institutions or organizations primarily offering educational or training programs
  • Special one-time projects or organizations that produce one program in a year

Application Deadlines for 2017 grants

  • Organizations submitting full application and interviewing in 2017: February 24, 2017
  • Organizations submitting interim report in 2017: April 14, 2016

Application Procedure for Annual Grants

Contact Barbara Anderson, Vice President of Finance & Operations

Grant applications are e-mailed in mid-December to invited organizations.


How the Project-Based Support Program Works is an online cultural marketplace connecting donors with projects they are passionate about. Learn more at

Submission Procedure for project-based funding initiative

Contact Rachel Porter, Project and Communications Coordinator

“We all benefit from a vibrant arts community, and we all therefore have an obligation to sustain our arts community in whatever ways we can, and not only through financial contributions.”

– Stellman Keehnel
Partner, DLA Piper