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For Immediate Release: January 20, 2015


 Seattle, WA – ArtsFund announced today that it has launched its 2014-2015 Economic Impact Study.  The ArtsFund Economic Impact Study measures and documents the significant direct and indirect economic impact made by cultural nonprofits in the Central Puget Sound region.  It is a comprehensive analysis of the aggregate expenditures of arts and cultural organizations and their patrons in the local and Washington State economies.

Data will be collected over the next six months from more than 350 arts and cultural organizations and 2,500 patrons in King, Kitsap, Pierce and Snohomish Counties. Findings will be broadly distributed in the fall of 2015.  Both regional and King County reports will be generated.

Mari Horita, ArtsFund President & CEO, stated, “Every five years, ArtsFund partners with regional cultural, civic, business, and government leaders to develop this critical research and advocacy tool.  The findings have been cited as essential to both the public and private sectors in shaping and promoting local and regional cultural strategies, and in helping community leaders analyze the role of arts and culture as a key component of the region’s com­petitive advantage.”

“Arts and culture enliven our community, boost our quality of life, and make this region an attractive place for new businesses that bring with them new jobs,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine. “The last ArtsFund report showed that the arts add $2 billion in business activity, $882 million in payroll, and 32,500 jobs to the Central Puget Sound Region. I look forward to the findings of the new study.”

Funding support for the 2014-2015 Economic Impact Study is being provided by: The Seattle Foundation, King County, 4Culture, Bank of America, Safeco Insurance, Visit Seattle, Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, and the Nesholm Family Foundation.

Tony Mestres, President & CEO, The Seattle Foundation, added, “The Seattle Foundation is proud to partner with ArtsFund on the 2014-2015 Economic Impact Study.  Seattle is redefining what the arts mean to the health of our community.   We know that supporting the arts brings creativity, vibrancy, and richness to our lives.  The arts and cultural sector in our region is helping us realize that it also changes the trajectory of children’s lives, unlocks our compassion for each other, and ignites our collective vision of the world we want to live in.”

Tom Norwalk, President & CEO, Visit Seattle, stated, “Not only does a vital arts ecology contribute to a better quality of life for residents, but it also serves as a robust driver of tourism. Seattle is increasingly recognized as a top cultural capital, and visitors come to experience our outstanding arts and culture.  The Arts Fund Economic Impact Study helps us quantify the powerful impact of cultural tourism, and the importance of continued investment in, and promotion of, our region’s unique cultural assets. We’re proud to be a partner in this study.”

Horita added, “We are grateful to our cross-sector funding and research partners, and to all patrons and organizations who participate, for their support and collaboration.  Arts and culture are vital contributors to our region’s economy and civic health, and the commitment of both public and private leadership is an indicator of the wide scope and value of the study.”

Research support for ArtsFund’s 2014-2015 Economic Impact Study is being provided by:  4Culture, the Association of King County Historical Organizations, Kitsap County Arts Board, the League of Snohomish County Heritage Organizations, Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, Snohomish County Arts Commission, and Tacoma Arts Commission.

The 2014-2015 Economic Impact Study will be presented in collaboration with Dr. William Beyers of the University of Washington and GMA Research Corporation.

Findings will be broadly distributed in the fall of 2015.   For more information, contact Sarah Sidman, ArtsFund Director of Strategic Initiatives & Communications, sarahsidman@artsfund.org.

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ArtsFund’s Mission: ArtsFund strengthens the community by supporting the arts through leadership, advocacy and grant making.

ArtsFund’s Vision: A community with a dynamic and world-class arts and cultural sector where the arts are accessible to all and valued as a central and critical component to a healthy society.

Download a PDF of the full press release here.