Northwest WA_Banner.png

Hello Cultural Sector of Northwest Washington!

My name is Jessi Wasson and I am the Programs and Operations Manager for Inspire Washington, your state-wide advocacy organization for the cultural sector including science, heritage, and the arts. We aim to lift up your vital programs in science, heritage, and the arts and champion more financial resources as you tackle the tremendous challenge of reopening and sustaining your work during these turbulent times. We just had a historic State Legislative Session in virtual Olympia, securing $50 million dollars for cultural businesses and passing critical legislation to support cultural work. We are so excited to spread the world and ensure you know how to claim your funding. Every organization will be able to apply for up to $75,000 from the state by the end of the calendar year.

We are hitting the road and heading to communities across the state with our Cultural Futures share and listening tour! We will break down the wins from Legislative Session and ensure you know how to claim funding for your cultural organization, business, or program. At Cultural Futures, we aim to provide you with news you can use. From funding sources and new program opportunities to advocacy opportunities, Inspire WA will share all the information you need to know right now. We are also preparing for next year’s Legislative Session and we want to hear from you! What do you need? How can we help? And how can you be more involved?

We will be coming to your community at Mount Baker Theatre in Bellingham on Wednesday, June 1 at 7pm. We envision this to be a wonderful event where the cultural sector of Northwest Washington can gather together and rally around new and life-changing funding. This event is FREE and open to the public. Please share this invite with anyone you believe would benefit.

Thank you for all that you do for your community and I hope to see you at Mount Baker Theatre!



Click to Register!

Land Acknowledgement

Inspire Washington acknowledges that we and our partners statewide are on the homelands of Native peoples, who have lived in this region from time immemorial. We pay respect to their elders past and present. We acknowledge their stewardship, their forced removal, and their continued fight to live on their ancestral lands.

We acknowledge that Bellingham is on the ancestral homelands of the Coast Salish Peoples, including the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe.

Bellingham and Mount Baker Theatre

We are very grateful to be hosted by the Mount Baker Theatre! Built in 1927, Mount Baker Theatre was one of the last grand vaudeville movie palaces to be built in the Pacific Northwest. From silent films to live performing arts, MBT has preserved history while also serving the demands of modern, continuously changing economy, technology, and society.

There are so many amazing organizations in Northwest Washington doing incredible work to improve and enrich the lives of their communities. To name a few... Wild Buffalo, Jansen Art Center, North Cascades InstituteChildren's Museum of Skagit County, Salish Sea Sciences, Orcas Island Historical Museum, and SO many more!


Virtual Schedule

Can't make the in-person event ? Not quite ready for in-person events? Your comfort and safety are important to us. We've got you covered with our three virtual sessions at a variety of times.

Virtual One: Wed, May 18 at 7pm

Virtual Two: Wed, June 8 at 9am

Virtual Three: Tues, June 21 at 12pm

Click to Register for a Virtual Session

Meet your Inspire WA presenters,

Manny Cawaling and Jessi Wasson

Manuel Cawaling Headshot 2016.jpg

Executive Director

My name is Manny and I'm so honored to champion greater support for cultural programming on your behalf. As a child in Seattle, my sisters and I loved watching old movies with our dad and recreating our favorite scenes from musicals.

Over a long and colorful career, I have made community impact through theatre, arts education, heritage programming, and by leading organizations embedded in communities of color.

My family is spread throughout the state but lives primarily in King, Chelan, and Grant counties. I'm especially excited about Cultural Futures because I love road trips across our beautiful state. I'll likely bring my tent and bicycle along.

IANO_20220131_165639_Z62_0198_fPS.2 _1_.jpg

Programs & Operations Manager

Hello! My name is Jessi and I grew up on Tiger Mountain, outside of Issaquah. As a kid, I spent most of my time doing theatre, raising Guide Dogs for the Blind, and playing outside.

My professional background is in stage management, non-profit fundraising, and community programming. I love to paddle board, run, Crossfit, bake bread, and enjoy live music!

My family is spread across our state including the beautiful Methow Valley and Walla Walla! I love visiting rural places and exploring our many landscapes! I am so excited to meet all of you and hear about the amazing cultural programs in your communities!

Building for the Arts

The 2023-2025 Building For the Arts (BFA) grant application is now open! BFA is a program that awards state grants to nonprofit community-based organizations to buy, build, or renovate arts and cultural facilities. It is managed by the Washington State Department of Commerce. These capital project grants can cover up to 33.3% of the total costs for construction.

Submit your application by June 23, 2022 at 5:00 p.m.

Learn more and apply by clicking here!


About Inspire Washington

Inspire Washington nurtures the human spirit and strengthens communities by increasing access to science, heritage, and arts programming through advocacy, resource development, education, and coalition building.

Inspire Washington

P.O. Box 806, Seattle, WA 98111

Manuel R. Cawaling, Executive Director

Jessi Wasson, Programs and Operations Manager

Madeline Dalton, Outreach Coordinator

See what's happening on our social sites:

Facebook  Twitter  Instagram