Louisville KY working on an arts master plan Monday, Feb 8 2016 

Louisville, KY (February 8, 2016) – For the first time in more than ten years, the Louisville region is embarking on an exciting 14-month planning process that will result in a master plan to better connect and strengthen our arts and cultural assets over the next decade. In announcing this Louisville Fund for the Arts-backed endeavor, Louisville follows in the footsteps of many major cities that have successfully developed and implemented similar plans, including Chicago, Chattanooga and Denver.

To ensure that the plan represents the diversity of our community, it will include an extensive engagement process with opportunities for individuals and organizations involved directly in the arts, as well as the general public, to participate and provide input in a variety of ways. The master plan will articulate a common platform of goals and strategies aimed at building alignment, leveraging resources, and positioning the Louisville region’s arts and cultural sector to lead and support the community’s overall vision for the future.

fund for the arts logo

“This planning process is an investment in our community that can enhance quality of life, spur economic development, and advance cultural tourism. This, in turn helps to retain and attract talent, businesses, and visitors to Louisville,” said Todd Lowe, Master Plan Steering Committee member and President at Parthenon LLC.

A steering committee comprised of individuals representing various sectors of the community was assembled in 2015 to select the plan’s facilitator and guide the planning process. Through a national competitive RFP process, Lord Cultural Resources of New York City was selected to facilitate the plan. Lord has 35 years of experience in cultural planning services with the successful completion of more than 2,000 projects in over 50 countries, including in cities like Chicago; Austin, Texas; and Sydney, Australia.

The foundation of the plan will be laid by gathering input from a diverse representation of community members from across the Greater Louisville area through interviews, workshops and surveys.

“The plan’s success will lie in the extent to which we can involve as many people and perspectives as possible. The steering committee and consultant team is committed to ensuring that the master plan is developed through an inclusive and engaging process that represents the geographic, economic, and ethnic diversity in our community”, said Gwen Kelly, KET American Graduate Community Engagement Coordinator and Steering Committee member.

arts master plan timeline

To this end, neighborhood workshops will take place the last week of February. All residents of the Greater Louisville region are invited and encouraged to participate, and there is no cost to attend. To get more information on the dates and times of these workshops or to register to attend, please email GreaterLouisvilleArts@gmail.com or visit www.GreaterLouisvilleArts.com.

The master plan and implementation strategy is expected to be finalized by the end of 2016.
For more information or to sign up to receive project news and updates, visit GreaterLouisvilleArts.com.
Follow along at Facebook.com/LouisvilleArtsPlan or on Twitter at @LouArtsPlan.


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Louisville Ky’s museum outreach mission achieved Monday, Feb 8 2016 

Kentucky Derby Museum completes mission to bring equine and Derby education
to students in each of the 120 Kentucky counties

Education Outreach Program celebrates completion of 15 year goal at Carroll County Middle School

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Since 2000, Kentucky Derby Museum’s Education Outreach Program has been on a mission to bring lessons in math, science, economics and history to students in each of Kentucky’s 120 counties, using the Kentucky Derby and the Thoroughbred racing industry as a fun hook. The Museum’s educators have made 933 school visits to 426 different schools across Kentucky. Overall, the Museum estimates the education team has seen nearly 370,000 students during all of its efforts in the Kentuckiana region.

Kentucky Derby Museum President Patrick Armstrong presents plaque to Carroll County Middle School Sixth Grade Science Teacher Brittany DeJarnett.

Kentucky Derby Museum President Patrick Armstrong presents plaque to Carroll County Middle School Sixth Grade Science Teacher Brittany DeJarnett.

The education team completed their “Quest for 120” last week with a visit to Carroll County. The education team presented “Science on the Track” to 6th graders at Carroll County Middle School. The school received a commemorative plaque and souvenir bookmarks to mark the milestone.

“To reach students with these dynamic, compelling educational programs across the entire great span of the Commonwealth is quite an accomplishment,” Kentucky Derby Museum President Patrick Armstrong said. “We are proud of our educational programming that enhances what students are learning in the classroom with the lessons that are unique to Kentucky and its heritage.”

Ronnie Dreistadt Curator of Education presenting “Science on the Track” to the 6th grade class.

Ronnie Dreistadt Curator of Education presenting “Science on the Track” to the 6th grade class.

Outreach offers free educational programs to schools and youth groups located at least 50 miles from Metro Louisville. Programs are age-appropriate and address Kentucky’s Academic Expectations and Program of Studies guidelines covering subjects in math, science, social studies, arts and humanities. The programs rely heavily on student participation, encompassing a variety of different methods to reach children of all learning styles.

“This is our way to take the Derby to the kids who can’t travel to see us and teach them about what makes our state special culturally, historically and economically,” Heather Hill, Outreach Coordinator said. “We aren’t just lecturing them for 45 minutes. We’re interacting with these students. It leaves an impact on them.”

The Education Outreach Program thrived with long-time support from The Kentucky Thoroughbred Association. Now, the Museum’s education department is supported by the Kentucky Derby Museum Gala, the major fundraising event for the Kentucky Derby Museum’s endowment.

For more information about Education Outreach programs, as well as other educational opportunities with Kentucky Derby Museum click here

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State Budget Cuts Threaten KSU’s Existence, President Warns Monday, Feb 8 2016 

Update: Budget cuts proposed by Gov. Matt Bevin would hit Kentucky State University at a vulnerable period and ultimately imperil the very existence of the historically black institution, President Raymond Burse said Monday afternoon in an interview with WFPL News.

Burse said Bevin’s proposed cuts and a new performance-based funding system for higher education would undercut a years-long plan to improve the university. Kentucky State enrollment has dropped in recent years under more stringent enforcement of admission standards and rules for students to pay their bills to the university.

Kentucky State had asked the state for increased funding while it recovered from the enrollment decrease, he said.

Instead, the Frankfort state university and others are facing a 4.5 percent budget cut this fiscal year and a 9 percent budget cut in the next.

After Bevin proposed cuts last month, the Kentucky State administration undertook an analysis of how it could move forward, Burse said.

The analysis found that the university may not be able to move forward at all. At the very least, Kentucky State would be put in a financial crisis that would lead to reduced programs and “head counts,” he said.

Burse said the university has shared its analysis with the Bevin administration and will lobby against the funding cuts to the governor and state legislators.

“We’re fighting and working to make certain, or to try to make certain, that those cuts don’t come into effect and that we’re able to stabilize and continue to build on Kentucky State University’s 130-year existence,” Burse said.

About 34 percent of Kentucky State’s budget comes from the state general fund, Burse said. The next largest revenue source is tuition.

Bevin’s proposal to base university funding from the state on performance would be particularly difficult for Kentucky State, Burse said. The university is undergoing assessments of its programs, post-tenure reviews and other initiatives aimed at improving its academic standing. He said those initiatives will be a years-long process; meanwhile, the state would begin allocating funding based on performance that the school is trying to improve.

“We had issues we were working on prior to the proposed budget cuts and we’ll continue working on those,” Burse said. “But when we’re already working on things that were detrimental to us, the budget cuts on top of it just exacerbates the situation.”

Update: In a statement Monday evening, the Bevin Administration said:

“Governor Bevin continues to discuss the issues surrounding the potential impacts of his budget proposal with all of the University presidents. President Burse has shared his concerns with the governor and KSU’s tuition stabilization proposal is being evaluated within that broader context.”

Earlier: Kentucky State University’s president warned Monday that proposed state budget cuts to higher education may threaten the existence of the historically black institution.

In a newsletter to the university community, KSU President Raymond Burse said the budget cuts Gov. Matt Bevin proposed last month would place KSU in a “precarious position.”

If the budget cuts were fully enacted, KSU’s options would be to “declare financial exigency and/or prepare a closure plan,” he wrote.

“I do not like either one of those options, and I am working hard to make certain we can do our work smarter, logically and effectively to ensure that Kentucky State University is here for another 130 years,” he wrote in the letter, which was published online by the Frankfort State Journal.

“This will require a great deal of work by all of us, and we must meet and be ready, willing and able to face and overcome the challenge,” he wrote. “No one is declaring defeat. For while it is day, we must work to make KSU a premier institution.”

Last month, Bevin proposed 9 percent budget cuts to most state agencies, including state universities, for the next two fiscal years. He also announced plans to cut 4.5 percent from those same agencies during the current fiscal year.

Bevin, a Republican, has said the state must cut its budget under the financial strains of underfunded pension systems and the impending requirement to pick up a portion of the state’s expanded Medicaid costs.

The budget proposal has been criticized by Democratic lawmakers.

A Bevin spokeswoman did not immediately respond Monday morning to questions regarding KSU.

State university presidents across the commonwealth have said the proposed cuts would be challenging to absorb. But KSU would have unique difficulties.

In his letter, Burse wrote that the university is attempting to address past “improper processes, procedures and in some instances, yes, negligence.”

In recent years, KSU became stricter in enforcing bill payments, a policy instituted because the university had $17 million in outstanding payments from students, wrote Burse, who became KSU’s president in 2014. He also wrote that the university has become stricter in enforcing its admission standards.

That’s led to a drop in enrollment.

In 2014, KSU enrollment was 1,588. The university’s official enrollment was 2,029 the previous year and 2,348 in 2010, according to the Kentucky Council for Postsecondary Education.

Burse could not be immediately reached for further comment.

Louisville Collegiate School to host day-long LearnFest with national experts on education Sunday, Feb 7 2016 

Louisville Collegiate SchoolThe Louisville Collegiate School will host LearnFest, a national symposium on learning with widely regarded experts in education and science as speakers. The day-long event is open to the public and already has attendees signed up from as far away as Texas and Massachusetts. LearnFest is an IdeaFestival affiliate. Out-of-towners will have a chance to tour […]

Commentary: Was U of L’s postseason ban appropriate, or an unfair PR move by President Ramsey? Saturday, Feb 6 2016 

ban-plan-jpgBy Lachlan McLean | WLKY They found the smoking gun. And they won’t tell us what it is. That’s the only possible explanation for the decision by the University of Louisville to self-impose a postseason ban for the basketball team for this year. It’s a shocking move I didn’t see coming, nor did coach Rick Pitino. […]

Louisville Ky basketball fans dealt harsh blow today by U of L Friday, Feb 5 2016 

Louisville, Ky., – The University of Louisville Men’s basketball team will not play in the post-season, announced today by university president Dr. James Ramsey.

The university has been conducting an investigation into alleged NCAA violations by members of the team amid an alleged sex scandal brought to light by Katina Powell’s book, “Breaking Cardinal Rules”.

Without naming specific details, Ramsey told a press conference this afternoon “based upon the information gathered….I have determined that it was reasonable to conclude violations have occurred in the mens basketball program in the past.”

With that, the university has self-imposed a post-season ban for the team.


Photo by Bill Brymer

“I recognize this is a significant penalty for our program and disappointment for our student athletes and many in our University of Louisville family,” Ramsey said.

Athletic director Tom Jurich said they found out yesterday of the violations.

“We will own our problems … All of this is very disappointing,” Jurich said. “It’s a sad day for all of us.  We want to do what’s right by the university and by the NCAA. [It’s] going to be very painful but we will move forward, too.”

Pitino told the press conference that “painful” is one of the “best understatements I could make.”

He said the team was favored to go far in the tournament. He called on the fans to lift up the team and continue to support the cards.

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U of L announces self-imposed postseason ban on basketball team in wake of escort scandal Friday, Feb 5 2016 

Coach Rick Pitino during Friday's press conferenceThe University of Louisville announced a self-imposed postseason ban on its men’s basketball team on Friday, citing the investigation into allegations that the school’s former director of basketball operations provided prostitutes for players and recruits. U of L President James Ramsey made the announcement at a press conference flanked by Athletic Director Tom Jurich and Coach Rick […]

Londrigan: Judge’s ruling against county RTW ordinance a victory for Kentucky’s working families Thursday, Feb 4 2016 

By BERRY CRAIG Federal District Judge David Hale’s decision striking down Hardin County’s “right to work” ordinances was a victory for Kentucky’s working families, says Bill Londrigan, president of the Kentucky State AFL-CIO. “These illegal ordinances would have affected all … Continue reading →

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U of L launches capital campaign to fund football stadium expansion Thursday, Feb 4 2016 

Rendering of an expanded Papa John's Cardinal Stadium | Courtesy of U of LBy WLKY News The University of Louisville Athletics Department is starting a capital campaign to fund the expansion of Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. The Coming Full Circle campaign will also fund changes to the Howard Schnellenberger Football Complex. The $55 million project will add 10,000 seats to the stadium by enclosing the end zone, bringing […]

Louisville Ky’s Fund for the Arts campaign underway Tuesday, Feb 2 2016 

New partnerships with Churchill Downs and Jennifer Lawrence Foundation

to raise funds for Louisville arts community


LOUISVILLE, Ky. (February 2, 2016) – The Fund for the Arts today kicked off its 2016 annual campaign and announced new partnerships with Churchill Downs and the Jennifer Lawrence Foundation, a component fund of the Community Foundation of Louisville, Inc. The new partnerships bring added star power to the Fund for the Arts’ 2016 campaign to help expand the reach and impact of the arts across Louisville.


The partnership with Churchill Downs will celebrate and raise money for Louisville’s arts community during this year’s Kentucky Derby week Opening Night, presented by Stella Artois and Old Forester, on Saturday, April 30. During the evening, the Fund for the Arts, the Jennifer Lawrence Foundation and Churchill Downs will present Louisville’s inaugural Award in the Arts, a separate ticketed benefit event in the newly renovated Stakes Room to celebrate and recognize local artists and arts supporters.

fund for the arts logo

“These new partnerships have the potential to greatly expand the reach of the arts, and the impact the arts can have in terms of quality of life, education and economic development,” said Steve Trager, Republic Bank chairman and CEO, and chair of the Fund for the Arts’ 2016 annual campaign. “We are tremendously thankful for the involvement of Churchill Downs and the Jennifer Lawrence Foundation who will help make 2016 a banner year for increasing the impact of the arts across Louisville.”


Opening Night Celebrates Louisville’s Arts

Churchill Downs’ Opening Night will kick off Derby week this year by showcasing Louisville’s arts community.


“We are proud to support Louisville’s vibrant arts community, and the important work of the Fund for the Arts and its supporters,” said Kevin Flanery, president, Churchill Downs Racetrack. “We can’t think of a better way to kick off Derby week than by celebrating the art and artists that make Louisville great.”


During the evening of live racing, live arts performances will take place in locations throughout the facility and video vignettes of the performances will be shown on Churchill Downs’ Big Board. A portion of proceeds from Opening Night will benefit the Fund for the Arts and guests can contribute directly to the Fund for the Arts at a number of donation stations set up around the racetrack.


“We want to give guests at Opening Night an arts experience around every turn,” said Christen Boone, president and CEO, Fund for the Arts. “The arts and Kentucky Derby week are all about passion, color, excitement and fun, so this partnership can become a wonderful way to kick off Derby week and support the Louisville arts community at the same time.”


The Fund for the Arts is making a call for artists for Opening Night and interested artists should contact Mo McKnight at (502) 414-1278 or mo@momcknight.com. For sponsorship details, contact Abby Shue at (502) 582-0104 orashue@fundforthearts.com. For event information on Opening Night, presented by Stella Artois and Old Forester, visit www.churchilldowns.com.


Jennifer Lawrence Foundation Aligns with the Fund for the Arts

The Jennifer Lawrence Foundation, the Fund for the Arts and Churchill Downs will co-present a separate, ticketed benefit during Opening Night. This VIP event in the new Stakes Room at Churchill Downs will include a reception and the presentation of Louisville’s inaugural Awards in the Arts.


The Awards in the Arts will celebrate the extraordinary arts community in the Greater Louisville region and the arts’ tremendous contribution to our unique cultural landscape and quality of life. The Awards in the Arts were established to celebrate local artists’ talent and passion to create, produce and present transformative and inspiring works of art, in and for our community. The awards will recognize individual artists, performers and craftsmen who have achieved national recognition, lifetime achievement and emerging talent. Other awards will recognize arts innovation, arts impact and arts education. Nominations for Louisville’s Awards in the Arts can be made online atwww.fundforthearts.org.


“I am so proud to support my hometown of Louisville with this partnership with the Fund for the Arts and Churchill Downs,” said Jennifer Lawrence. “Supporting the arts is incredibly important to me and I am thrilled that we will be able create new, transformative arts experiences across Kentucky.”

Jennifer Lawrence

“The Jennifer Lawrence Foundation is excited to be partnering with two iconic Louisville organizations, Churchill Downs and Fund for the Arts, to create a unique, one of a kind experience,” said Meredith Lawrence, executive director, Jennifer Lawrence Foundation. “This partnership will allow us to further our goal of enriching the Louisville arts community.”


This special evening will be unlike any other Louisville gala. Guests will enjoy live thoroughbred racing from the best view at the racetrack, signature cocktails and dinner, while mingling with the Louisville’s arts community. Awards in the Arts will be presented in the winner’s circle and on the track’s Big Board between races. The inaugural awards program will also serve as the debut of Churchill Downs’ newly renovated Stakes Room.


For sponsor and ticket information for Louisville’s inaugural Awards in the Arts, presented by the Fund for the Arts, the Jennifer Lawrence Foundation and Churchill Downs, please call (502) 582-0100 or visit www.fundforthearts.org.


Fund for the Arts Launches 2016 Campaign

The Fund for the Arts announced the new partnerships today as part of its annual campaign kickoff event. Several hundred campaign coordinators from companies across the region attended the event and enjoyed a luncheon, arts mini-performances and remarks from the Fund’s campaign leaders.


Workplace giving is a primary source of income to the Fund for the Arts, and nearly 200 companies and 20,000 donors contribute to the Fund every year. Combined with support from corporate, individual and foundation donors, the Fund for the Arts raised more than $8 million last year. The Fund for the Arts supported 15 cultural partners, 75 arts and cultural projects with 37 organizations through power2give, as well as arts experiences and residencies in 113 schools and 12 community centers through the Every Child Arts Education Initiative across the region. The collective impact was $259 million in annual economic activity, 400,000 arts in education experiences and access to every school and zip code in the region.


To learn more about the Fund for the Arts annual campaign, visitwww.fundforthearts.org.





Fund for the Art is a regional nonprofit with the mission to maximize the arts to drive economic development, education, and quality of life in our community. The Fund conducts one of the oldest united arts campaigns and supports world-class institutions, community organizations and arts-in-education. The Fund for the Arts also hostspower2give.org, an online crowd-funding platform for any 501(c)3 organization in Kentucky and Southern Indiana to post arts and culture projects and the nationally recognized NeXt! leadership development program for young professionals. For more information, visit www.fundforthearts.org.



Churchill Downs, the world’s most legendary racetrack, has conducted Thoroughbred racing and presented America’s greatest race, the Kentucky Derby, continuously since 1875. Located in Louisville, the flagship racetrack of Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ: CHDN) offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track. Churchill Downs will conduct the 142nd running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands on May 7, 2016. The track’s 2016 Spring Meet is scheduled for April 30-July 2. The track has hosted the Breeders’ Cup World Championships eight times. For more information visit www.churchilldowns.com.



The Jennifer Lawrence Foundation is a component fund of The Community Foundation of Louisville, Inc. The fund supports a variety of charities, including the Fund for the Arts, Boys and Girls Club, Make-A-Wish Foundation, West End School, St. Mary’s Center, Special Olympics and more. For more information, visit www.jenniferlawrencefoundation.com.

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