Delta Arts Secures 2018 Funding from MS Arts Commission
Delta Arts Alliance has been awarded a $14,000 grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC). This grant is a portion of the 1.3 million in grants the Commission will award in 2017-2018 and will be used to support Delta Arts Alliance in its everyday mission to connect residents of the MS Delta to the arts and arts education. 

The grants are made possible by continued funding from the Mississippi State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts. 

"Arts organizations throughout the state of Mississippi play a pivotal role in sharing the power of the arts with people from all walks of life," said Malcolm White, executive director of MAC. "The arts are for everyone, and the Mississippi Arts Commission is pleased to support arts organizations committed to growing the presence of the arts in their communities."

Delta Arts continues its diligent work inside public schools, providing quality arts experiences to schools that would otherwise not have those teachings. Combined with its after-school programs and impactful partner work at area enrichment sites, DAA allows for over 6,000 students to have meaningful and transformative experiences and interactions with the arts. 

"It is a consistent source of organizational pride to be among the list of sites funded by the Mississippi Arts Commission," said Rori Eddie Herbison, executive director of Delta Arts Alliance. "It is always an exhilarating moment when you see the email pop up on your screen, but it is also immensely gratifying to see so many of our partners across the region receive funding. Funding equals sustainability and that is so critical in being able to offer successful programming."

Hilda Povall, grant committee chair and member of the Delta Arts board added, "Like our fellow grants committee member, Susannah Wessel, said, 'It's Christmas in July!' I have to agree. It is a very happy day for Delta Arts, and all things considered with budgets and pending cuts, $14,000 is quite remarkable. I have to believe it speaks to our work and our commitment to the arts."

The Mississippi Arts Commission, a state agency, serves the residents of the state by providing grants that support programs to enhance communities; assist artists and arts organizations; promote the arts in education and celebrate Mississippi's cultural heritage. Established in 1968, the Mississippi Arts Commission is funded by the Mississippi Legislature, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Mississippi Endowment for the Arts at the Community Foundation of Greater Jackson and other private sources. The agency serves as an active supporter an promoter of arts in community life and in arts education. 

For more information from the Mississippi Arts Commission, contact Anna Ehrgott, Communications Director, 601-359-6546 or aehrgott@arts.ms.gov.  

>> Artist-in-Residence
CHELSEA YOUNG pens success at Greenville Summer Program

Chelsea Young pens success in Greenville Renaissance Scholars
ARTIST-in-RESIDENCE Chelsea Young 
(Video Credit: Robertson Scholar Nonnie Egbuna)

D ebuting a New Feature
>> DAA Fast Facts

Consider it a Did You Know, of sorts. A quick-hitter, a small bite, a fun factoid... A FAST FACT. 

Call it what you may, it's another way for Delta Arts Alliance to introduce our readers, patrons and supporters to another interesting tidbit in our organizational make-up. Today we draw your attention to  our Facebook feed

Each Monday, we post to our Facebook feed and our website, what we call a  #MONDAYMATTERS . It's a reminder of the good things happening in the arts, because of the arts and in strength and combination with the arts across the world. It's our hope this posts play a small part in helping you find your #MOJO on a Monday morning. 

Here is a sneak peak of this coming week's  #MONDAYMATTERS :

Happy #MondayMatters! Today, we're shining a light on a super-cool, contemporary artist based out of Oakland. Brendan Monroe has garnered recognition for his work that "reimagines" both natural occurrences, like waves and flowing water, and other-worldly creatures - aliens that have undergone some type of microbial turmoil. His work challenges form and plays with reality in a way that is both refreshing and potentially disconcerting; he draws inspiration from science, as chemistry and biology were two of his main interests when he was younger. Now, his work can be found on buildings, in galleries, both in and outside of the United States.

Follow your dreams- you never know where they might lead you! #m2

'Blessed' for her Time at Delta Arts Alliance
Bookkeeper & Summer Intern
Part-Time Bookkeeper/Part-Time Intern, Full-Time Awesome:
(photo credit: Will Baugh)
Tell us a little about yourself. 
Well, my name is Katie Grace Carlini. I'm 21 years old and I'm from Batesville, Mississippi.  I enjoy good music, being on the water with family and friends and spending time with my best friend Rex....he's a maltipoo.
You had a really precarious start to your tenure with Delta Arts Alliance. Share that story with our readers. 
I was supposed to train with Meg (Funderburk, Delta Arts' Bookkeeper) several weeks prior to her going out on maternity leave, but the baby had a different plan.  Meg and I were really just getting started with my training when she went into premature labor and the face-to-face training was over. I came in my second day and Rori looked at me and said, 'Are you ready to see if you can swim?' Sink or swim time was right. (laughing) Luckily, Meg was just a phone call away and she was always willing to answer my questions and I was blessed to have Rori as a resource also. I can laugh now, but I was really nervous at first. I'm not going to lie. Really nervous.
We have always been so impressed with your tireless work ethic, your reliability and your willingness to do what it takes to get the job done. Where does that experience and those worthy qualities come from?
My mother set the bar really high for both my sister and for me.  She taught us from a really early age that anything worth doing was worth doing right.  We were taught not to make excuses but to own our mistakes and to learn from them.  I am what I am today because she set the example and I'm thankful others see those qualities in me.
As you now begin your internship with Delta Arts, you have become an invaluable member of our team. What have you learned most in your time with DAA?
I came here to learn the tools of my trade, accounting, but today I can say DAA has taught me the spirit of community and the appreciation of all forms of art.  I have always enjoyed music and musicals but DAA has opened my eyes to so many other art forms that I now enjoy and I am so thankful for the opportunity it has provided me.
Last question, what's next? Where would you like to see your career take you?
 I will begin my final semester at DSU this fall.  I'm still trying to decide if I will remain here at DSU to complete my Master's before entering the job market.  I have always wanted to travel and I hope to someday have that opportunity with a global company. My mother laughs when she tells people I have wanted to be an accountant since I was in sixth grade and I have always wanted to live in a city with public transportation but where ever I go I will always be thankful for the personal and professional experiences DAA has given me.

Become a member of Delta Arts Alliance.
Click here. 

Greenville Renaissance Scholars
Artists-in-Residence (L. to R.)
Kevin Fomengia & 
Chelsey Young

"If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself."  
 -Henry Ford

I've had the chance to attend Delta Arts Alliance events; my wife has served as a visual arts teacher with Delta Arts Alliance and I've had a number of good conversations with Rori about DAA, so before this summer I felt I understood Delta Arts Alliance fairly well. 

I've always been a strong supporter of the arts and Delta Arts Alliance is an organization I've encouraged people to be part of and attend events. 

However, after my experience this summer partnering with Rori and Delta Arts Alliance through my work with Greenville Renaissance Scholars, I realize even more so how powerful Delta Arts Alliance is positioned to create positive change in the Delta and everyone needs to donate, volunteer, share on social media and know all about Delta Arts Alliance!
Greenville Renaissance Scholars recently had a change in leadership and we moved in a new direction this summer with our 10th annual Camp Renaissance, a month long program for middle school Scholars that combines arts and academics to help our Scholars have future success in college and beyond. 

Last year. we only had 15 Scholars and a half-day program. This summer, with our committed board members and myself as the summer camp director, we set an ambitious goal of greatly increasing the number of Scholars and expanding from a half-day to a full-day program. We successfully recruited 50 Scholars, over a threefold increase from last summer, and completed our expansion to a full-day program.
Delta Arts Alliance was a partner in the success Greenville Renaissance Scholars had organizationally this summer. Rori worked closely with me to place and sponsor two excellent art instructors, Chelsea Young and Kevin Fomengia, to be part of Camp Renaissance 2017. 

Kevin led our drama program that cumulated in our Mississippi Bicentennial Performance on June 30th and Chelsea brought a wonderful new dimension to Camp Renaissance teaching music theory, writing and performance. The financial support Delta Arts Alliance provided by supporting the placements of Chelsea and Kevin cannot be overstated. 

We wrote grants and asked for individual donations in the lead up to our summer expansion. The financial support of Delta Arts Alliance gave us afforded our staff more time to plan our summer programming, communicate with our amazing families, advertise and train our staff - time we otherwise we might have had to continue fundraising.
Delta Arts Alliance is a true blessing to the Mississippi Delta. I know there are many additional programs Delta Arts Alliance supports, such as summer art classes at the Delta Arts Alliance gallery there in Cleveland, art shows, school-based programs and more. 

I do not personally know the full scope of Delta Arts Alliance's impact but I do know it is a large, significant, game-changing impact that is improving many lives in the Mississippi Delta. I know this because Delta Arts Alliance greatly influenced this summer for 50 middle school Scholars in Greenville and I will always be thankful for that to Rori, the Delta Arts Alliance Board and to all the strong supporters of Delta Arts Alliance.
Thank you for an amazing summer and we look forward to continued opportunities to partner with Delta Arts Alliance. Enjoy the rest of your summer!
Jon Delperdang
Greenville Renaissance Scholars
Summer Camp 2017, Director