Community Investments Committee - April 20, 2021 - Minutes

Meeting Date: 
April 20, 2021 - 1:00pm
Location: 

MEETING OF THE COMMUNITY INVESTMENTS COMMITTEE

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

1 p.m.

Remote Meeting via video and teleconferencing

Minutes

 

Chair Collins called the meeting to order at 1:09 p.m.

 

1. Roll Call

Commissioners Present

Charles Collins, Chair
Suzanne Ferras
Nabiel Musleh (joined the meeting at 2:05 p.m.)
Roberto Ordeñana (joined the meeting at 1:11 p.m.)
Linda Parker-Peninngton
Marcus Shelby
Janine Shiota

 

Staff Present

Ralph Remington, Director of Cultural Affairs
Joanne Lee, Deputy Director of Programs
Jaren Bonillo, Senior Program Officer
Debbie Ng, Program Officer
Anne Trickey, Program Officer
Tina Wiley, Program Officer
 

Chair Charles Collins announced virtual meeting instructions.

Roberto Ordeñana joined the meeting at 1:11 p.m.

Program Associate Lorena Moreno announced public comment instructions.

Commissioner Collins asked Director of Cultural Affairs Ralph Remington to add an amendment to the agenda. Director Remington announced that the meeting would take a 15-minute pause to receive the live verdict of the Derek Chauvin trial.  

 

2. General Public Comment

There was no public comment.



3. Cultural Centers Endowment FY22 Allocation

Deputy Director Joanne Lee brought forth these motions that represent the operating grants for the San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC) four cultural centers and two virtual cultural centers that are subgrantees. The total amount of funds from the cultural center endowment is just under $2.4 million. Due to the anticipated decrease in hotel tax funds in fiscal year 2022, the grants to the cultural centers will decrease by 10% compared to fiscal year 2021. However, each of the four cultural center buildings will receive an additional $10,000 to support reopening expenses. These motions are amendments to their FY21 grants, which extend their grant windows into fiscal year 2022. Finally, Deputy Director Lee noted that the SFAC is changing the terms in the cultural center lease agreements from one to five-year terms, which provides long-term stability and signifies the ongoing investment and partnership with the cultural centers.

Commissioner Shiota asked for confirmation that contract amendments would cover the rest of 2021 that would then go into fiscal year 2022 and wanted to know whether the funds would be released at once or at the beginning of the year. Deputy Director Lee confirmed these amendments will extend their current grants that were originally going to terminate on June 30, 2021 to June 30, 2022. She also noted that the funds would be disbursed over the next twelve months in alignment with the grant disbursement schedule.

Commissioner Ordeñana recused himself from Item 3a due to a financial conflict of interest with the Queer Cultural Center at 1:28 p.m.

Motion carried by Commissioner Shiota, seconded by Commissioner Parker-Pennington moved to approve the motion, as presented:

  1. Motion to extend the grant agreement to the African American Art and Culture Complex (authorized by Resolution No. 0601-20-062) and increase the grant amount by $822,182 from $916,591; a total of $1,216,924 for the cultural center ($635,223 plus $581,701); a total of $286,500 to support activities at the cultural center from the Department of Children Youth and Families (DCYF) (actual amount from DCYF in FY21 was $147,000 plus $139,500); a total of $235,349 to sub-grantee Queer Cultural Center (QCC) ($111,481 plus $123,868); and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a Grant Agreement not to exceed $1,738,773 ($916,591 plus $822,182) for fiscal year 2021-2022 at this time.

    There was no public comment.

    The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
    Ayes: Collins, Ferras, Parker-Peninngton, Shelby, and Shiota

    Commissioner Ordeñana returned to the meeting at 1:32 p.m.

Motion carried by Commissioner Parker-Pennington, seconded by Commissioner Shiota moved to approve the motion, as presented:

  1. Motion to extend the grant agreement to the Bayview Opera House Inc. (authorized by Resolution No. 0601-20-063) and increase the grant amount by $359,607 from $388,452 and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a grant agreement not to exceed $748,059 for fiscal year 2021-2022 at this time.

    There was no public comment.

    The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
    Ayes: Collins, Ferras, Ordeñana, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

Motion carried by Commissioner Parker-Pennington, seconded by Commissioner Shelby moved to approve the motion, as presented:

  1. Motion to extend the grant agreement to the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts (authorized by Resolution No. 0601-20-064) and increase the grant amount by $574,667 from $627,408 and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a grant agreement not to exceed $1,202,075 for fiscal year 2021-2022 at this time.

    There was no public comment.

    The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
    Ayes: Collins, Ferras, Ordeñana, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

Motion carried by Commissioner Parker-Pennington, seconded by Commissioner Shiota moved to approve the motion, as presented:

  1. Motion to extend the grant agreement to SOMArts (authorized by Resolution No. 0601-20-065) by $764,737 from $838,597; a total of $1,367,985 for the cultural center ($653,256 plus $714,729); a total of $235,349 to sub-grantee Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center (APICC) ($111,481 plus $123,868); and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a grant agreement not to exceed $1,603,334 for fiscal year 2021-2022 at this time.

    There was no public comment.

    The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
    Ayes: Collins, Ferras, Ordeñana, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

 

4. Special Project Grant

Deputy Director Joanne Lee noted this action was similar to the cultural center operational grants approved in Items 3a-3d and that this is a special project grant because they are not subgrantees of the brick and mortar cultural centers.

Commissioner Shiota expressed an interest in learning more about the digital programming of the virtual centers and requested they join a future commission meeting to share out. Deputy Director Lee confirmed she would schedule the cultural centers to do so in the upcoming year.

Motion carried by Commissioner Shelby, seconded by Commissioner Parker-Pennington to approve the motion, as presented:

Motion to increase and extend the grant amount of $123,868 (authorized by Resolution No. 0706-20-078) to the American Indian Cultural Center (Fiscal Sponsor: Intersection for the Arts) by $111,481 and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into a grant agreement not to exceed $235,349 for fiscal year 2021-2022 at this time. 

There was no public comment.

The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
Ayes: Collins, Ferras, Ordeñana, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota   

 

5. Artivist-in-Residence

Arts Education Program Officer Tina Wiley reported that this grant is a program for nonprofit arts organizations to hire teaching artists as part-time hourly employees. They design and implement socially responsive art and creative exploration learning experiences as a means to heal and build community. In turn, teaching artists are provided equitable compensation and opportunities to further their artistic practices and professional development as educators in a three-year cohort. This grant is an evolution of the WritersCorp Teaching Artist-in-Residence (WCTAIR) grant.

Arts Education Program Officer Wiley reported there were a total of nine applications received and scored by three panelists on April 2, 2021 who were queer, straight, Black, Native American, Filipina and Latinx identities. They were teaching artists, arts administrators, practicing artists, community organizers and healers.

Motion carried by Commissioner Shelby, seconded by Commissioner Ferras to approve the motion, as presented:

Motion to approve the Artivist-in-Residence (AIR) funding recommendation to award two (2) grants the following organizations, and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into grant agreements for amounts not to exceed the following at this time:

  • San Francisco Youth Theatre, $400,000
  • Citizen Film, $400,000

There was no public comment.

Commissioner Ferras expressed her excitement for these grants and their proposed projects and congratulated Arts Education Program Officer Wiley for her work. She commends the effort to look at different ways of rolling out the WCTAIR grant category to introduce other teaching artists and other creative disciplines to the public as a way to bring quality art education to San Francisco students.

The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
Ayes: Collins, Ferras, Ordeñana, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

Commissioner Ferras left the meeting at 1:58 p.m.

 

6. WritersCorps Teaching Artist-in-Residence

Senior Program Officer Jaren Bonillo reported that WCTAIR focuses on youth literacy development through creative writing and nurtures the artistic and professional talents of teaching artists through regular cohort meetings. WCTAIR has a strong history of prioritizing and providing access to LGBTQ+ youth, teenage parents, low income youth and youth affected by the juvenile justice system.

Senior Program Officer Bonillo asked to save the date for Wordstorm 2021, which is the annual culminating celebration that features live performances and visual presentations by the San Francisco WCTAIR youth participants. The event is organized by the San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC) through the WCTAIR grants program and in collaboration with the San Francisco Public Library.

Motion carried by Commissioner Parker-Pennington, seconded by Commissioner Shelby to approve the motion, as presented:

Motion to increase and extend the grant amounts of $52,000 (authorized by Resolution No. 0506-19-109) by $55,000 to the WritersCorps Teaching Artist-in-Residence teaching artists for fiscal year 2021-2022; and to authorize the Director of Cultural Affairs to enter into grant agreements for amounts not to exceed the following at this time:

  • Robyn Carter (Fiscal Sponsor Intersection for the Arts), $107.000
  • Madeleine Clifford (Fiscal Sponsor Intersection for the Arts), $107,000
  • Mandeep Sethi (Fiscal Sponsor Intersection for the Arts), $107,000
     

There was no public comment.

The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
Ayes: Collins, Ordeñana, Parker-Peninngton, Shelby, and Shiota

 

7. Cultural Equity Endowment FY21 Funding Recommendations

FY21 Timeline and Overview

Senior Program Officer Bonillo reported that the Cultural Equity Endowment was enacted into legislation in 1993 and is stewarded by the SFAC. Funds from the endowment help to ensure there is fair access to opportunities vital to full cultural expression for historically marginalized communities and that artists are represented in the development of policies and the distribution of resources.

Over the past year, the Community Investment team focused on making shifts to the core grant programs by evolving the grantmaking to be responsive to the needs of arts organizations and artists during a very critical time when financial resources were declining due to shuttered venues. Key stakeholders and focus groups provided community feedback that helped to transition the Cultural Equity Initiatives (CEI) program to multi-year general operating support to provide more flexible grant dollars to organizations to pivot their programs and meet communities in new ways.

The San Francisco Artist (SFA) grants, formally known as the Individual Artist Commission (IAC) grant, also evolved by increasing access for individual artists by broadening the creative disciplines to include traditional arts, curatorial and socially-based practices, and a new category for artists self-identifying as having five years or less experience. These evolutions resulted in an unprecedented increase in applications, which not only represents the increasing need for City funding, but also the expression of resiliency in the arts sector and the power of art to forge a path for healing during such a time of unrest.

Guidelines for fiscal year 2021 were released in October 2020 with grant panels taking place in February and March 2020. Grant periods will begin July 1, 2021 through June 2022 or 2023. There were multiple technical assistance workshops including grant workshops for the trans and disability communities, a work sample webinar, category-specific grant workshops and 158 one-on-one consultations prior to the deadline. There were 10 distinct grant panels with 40 panelists over the course of 14 days.

In addition to the Cultural Equity Endowment an unprecedented number of grant categories were administered in the last 12 months that focused on responsive grantmaking and recovery.

Commissioner Collins expressed deep appreciation for the wide scope of deep involvement during the current unprecedented circumstances. On behalf of the entire commission Commissioner Collins expressed deep appreciation the work of the staff and the review panels.

 

Commissioner Nabiel Musleh joined the meeting at 2:05 p.m.

At 2:06 p.m. Director of Cultural Affairs Remington announced the committee meeting will pause and stop the recording until 2:26 p.m. in order to receive the live verdict of the Derek Chauvin trial. 

Commissioner Ordeñana left the meeting at 2:07 p.m.

The Community Investments Committee meeting resumed at 2:34 p.m.
 

Cultural Equity Endowment FY21 Funding Recommendations Continued

FY21 Timeline and Overview

Commissioner Collins called for public comment. There was no public comment.

Senior Program Officer Bonillo reported that the applicants recommended for funding were selected through a competitive RFP process with the following process and timeline: Guidelines and applications were released on October 19, 2020; one (1)  informational grant webinar launched the cycle on October 16, 2020; two (2) district and community specific grant workshops focused on the Trans and Disability communities throughout the month of October; three (3) category specific grant workshops, one (1) work sample webinar, and one hundred and fifty-eight (158) one-on-one technical assistance sessions occurred in October 2020 through January 2021 with three hundred and thirty-three (333) total outreach participants and two (2) cultural ambassadors engaged; special project grant guidelines and applications were released on October 1, 2020 and February 1, 2021; application deadlines were from December 9, 2020 through February 10, 2021; the onboarding of forty (40) panelists with four (4) panelist orientations and the release of applications for review took place February 12-April 2, 2021; and, ten (10) panelist grant reviews took place over fourteen (14) days from February 25, 2021 – April 2, 2021.
 

8. FY21 Funding Recommendations

Senior Program Officer Bonillo presented an overview of the total impact by the numbers for the 2021 grant cycle. Senior Program Officer Bonillo lifted up that 19% of the San Francisco Artist grants are first-time grantees, which demonstrates the efforts to increase access for San Francisco-based artists. Additionally, she highlighted that the 228 applications received are an 88% increase from the 124 submissions in 2020.

Commissioner Shelby wanted to know more about the selection process and application timeline for the Artistic Legacy Grant (ALG). Senior Program Officer Bonillo confirmed the selection criteria and noted that it is currently in the review process and that there will be a more thorough overview of the category at the June committee meeting. Commissioner Shelby asked if commissioners are able to nominate applicants. Bonillo clarified that it is a public competitive process.

Commissioner Shiota acknowledged and offered congratulations to the hours of work that went into the FY21 CI Impact by the Numbers presentation and the overall roll out of the funds getting into the community. Commissioner Collins seconded the great appreciation and recognized that the ask of Commissioner Walker to ensure that the applicant pool was very rich was achieved. Commissioner Shelby thirds all the comments and expressions of congratulations.

In total, 320 applications were received requesting $11,418,950. The following recommendations include funding 102 applicants with an allocation of $4,092,344. (See grant allocation overview explanatory document for more detail by category.)

Commissioner Collins called for public comment. There was no public comment.

 

9. San Francisco Artist Grants

Program Officer Anne Trickey presented an overview of the San Francisco Artist (SFA) grants highlighting that in 2021 the grant categories were opened up to all genres and added a new option for applicants to self-identify as having five years or less of experience. Panels were curated for performance, literary, visual, media and five years or under. Panelists demonstrated a deep understanding of racial equity, which was necessary within the new cycle of March 2021.

Program Officer Trickey noted that in 2021 staff provided additional targeted technical assistance, carefully curated panels, an extension of eligibility checks and managed twice as many panels then in any previous years. They additionally noted that staff designed the virtual panels around accessibility and provided additional assistance and information to audience members.

Commissioner Shelby asked if there is a challenge in finding Black individual artists. Program Officer Trickey confirmed that the demographic data outlining these numbers will be presented in full at the June commission meeting. They encouraged Commissioner Shelby to review the project descriptions in the SFA memo to discover that many applicants self identify and describe projects that are focused on Black identity and community in San Francisco. Commissioner Shelby expressed an interest in helping to recruit musicians, performers and other artists to apply to the SFA grant.

Commissioner Collins noted that recommended grantee Tanea Lunsford won the Young Playwrights’ Award when she was 13 and 17 and self identifies as a child of the incarcerated and has been an active voice in raising awareness in San Francisco.

Commissioner Collins gave thanks and deep appreciation for Program Officer Trickey’s presentation and work on this grant category.

Motion carried by Commissioner Shiota, seconded by Commissioner Musleh to approve the motion, as presented:

Motion to approve the funding recommendations of the San Francisco Artist Grants (SFA) funding recommendations to award sixty-four (64) grants totaling $1,280,000 to the following individuals, and to enter into grant agreements with each or their fiscal sponsor for amounts not to exceed the following at this time:

Alexander Hernandez, $20,000
Alpha Oumar Sidibe (Fiscal Sponsor: Dancers’ Group Inc.), $20,000
Amihan Ildefonzo Redondiez, (Fiscal Sponsor: Filipino-American Development Foundation), $20,000
Amy Grace Lam, $20,000
Andreina Maldonado, $20,000
Angela Han, $20,000
Antony Fangary, $20,000
Ata’ataoletaeao McNealy, $20,000
Brittany Newell, $20,000
Calixto E. Robles, $20,000
Carol S. Seigel, $20,000
Cecilia Pena-Govea (Fiscal Sponsor: Brava for Women in the Arts), $20,000
Daniel Lau (Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center), $20,000
Danny Thanh Nguyen, $20,000
David R. Molina, $20,000
Éamon Ezra McGivern, $20,000
Eduardo Daza Taylor IV, $20,000
Eric Garcia (Fiscal Sponsor: Dancers’ Group Inc.), $20,000
Erica Dwyer, $20,000
Fernando Martí, $20,000
Howard Joshua Faught, $20,000
Jalitza Ferreras, $20,000
Javier Briones, $20,000
Jenifer Karla Wofford, $20,000
Jo Kreiter, $20,000
John Thomas, $20,000
Josephine Lea Iselin, $20,000
Juliana Delgado Lopera, $20,000
Kelly Lynn Falzone Inouye, $20,000
Kevin Dublin, $20,000
Kevin Seaman, $20,000
Kevin Simmonds, $20,000
Kija Lucas, $20,000
Kimberly Arteche (Fiscal Sponsor: Kearny Street Workshop), $20,000
Kimberly Shuck, $20,000
Kyle Casey Chu, $20,000
Lauren Garcia, $20,000
Lenora Lee, $20,000
Leticia Hernández, $20,000
Lisa Wanzer, $20,000
Lourdes Figueroa, $20,000
Marina Fukushima (Fiscal Sponsor: Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center), $20,000
Melissa Hung, $20,000
Michael Arcega, $20,000
Michael Warr, $20,000
Monica L Magtoto, $20,000
Natasha Tamate Weiss, $20,000
Niloufar Talebi, $20,000
Pamela Z (Fiscal Sponsor: Circuit Network), $20,000
Ploy Pirapokin, $20,000
Rachel Nai Xin Khong, $20,000
Rodney L Ewing, $20,000
Sarah Matsui, $20,000
Sephora Woldu, $20,000
Shawna Virago, $20,000
Tanea Lunsford, $20,000
Tania Santiago Santos (Fiscal Sponsor: World Arts West), $20,000
Tara Dorabji (Fiscal Sponsor: Chinese for Affirmative Action), $20,000
Tsungwei Moo, $20,000
Vanessa F Sanchez, $20,000
Veronica Majano, $20,000
Vida Kuang (Fiscal Sponsor: Asian Improv Arts), $20,000
Virgie Tovar, $20,000
William Rhodes, $20,000


There was no public comment.

The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
Ayes: Collins, Musleh, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

 

10. Organization Grants

  1. Cultural Equity Initiatives

Program Officer Debbie Ng presented an overview of the Cultural Equity Initiatives (CEI) grant category that supports small and mid-sized arts organizations with core support who are deeply rooted in San Francisco communities. She noted that in 2021 CEI became the first core support grants program to offer organizations funds to sustain day-to-day operations and provide maximum flexibility. This shift takes into account the severe financial impacts the arts sector experienced due to Covid-19.

Finally, Program Officer Ng noted there was a 33% increase in applications and a 45% increase in requested amounts in 2021 as compared to 2020.

Motion carried by Commissioner Parker-Pennington, seconded by Commissioner Shelby to approve the motion, as presented:

Motion to approve the Cultural Equity Initiatives (CEI) funding recommendations to award twenty-seven (27) grants totaling $2,138,000 to the following organizations, and to enter into grant agreements with each organization or their fiscal sponsor for amounts not to exceed the following at this time:

A PLACE OF HER OWN (Fiscal Sponsor: Asian American Women Artists Association Inc.), $50,000
African-American Shakespeare Company, $100,000
AfroSolo Theatre Company (Fiscal Sponsor: Intersection for the Arts), $75,000
American Indian Cultural Center (Fiscal Sponsor: Intersection for the Arts), $100,000
Anti-Eviction Mapping Project (Fiscal Sponsor: Independent Arts & Media), $50,000
Arab Film and Media Institute, $88,000
Bay Area American Indian Two-Spirits (Fiscal Sponsor: QCC-The Center for Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Art & Culture), $75,000
Chrysalis Studio Fiscal Sponsor: (Fiscal Sponsor: QCC-The Center for Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Art & Culture), $75,000
David Herrera Performance Company (Fiscal Sponsor: Dancers’ Group Inc.), $50,000
Embodiment Project, $100,000
Emerging Arts Professionals San Francisco Bay Area (Fiscal Sponsor: Intersection for the Arts), $100,000
Ensemble for These Times (Fiscal Sponsor: InterMusic SF), $50,000
Festival of Latin American Contemporary Choreographers (Fiscal Sponsor: Dancers’ Group Inc.), $75,000
Flyaway Productions, $100,000
Foglifter Press, $50,000
Friends of SCRAP Inc., $100,000
Genryu Arts, $100,000
Handful Players Inc., $100,000
Kultivate Labs, $100,000
Push Dance Company, $100,000
Related Tactics (Fiscal Sponsor: Chinese Culture Foundation of San Francisco), $25,000
Sammay Productions (Fiscal Sponsor: Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center), $50,000
SF Urban Film Fest (Fiscal Sponsor: Intersection for the Arts), $75,000
The Black Woman Is God (Fiscal Sponsor: African American Art and Culture Complex), $50,000
Women’s Audio Mission, $100,000
Yerba Buena Arts & Events, $100,000
Zaccho SF, $100,000


There was no public comment.

The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
Ayes: Collins, Musleh, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

  1. Creative Space

Senior Program Officer Bonillo presented an overview of the Creative Space (CRSP) grant category that supports the enhancement of San Francisco cultural facilities through planning and facilities improvement grants.

Motion carried by Commissioner Parker-Pennington, seconded by Commissioner Musleh to approve the motion, as presented:

​Motion to approve the Creative Space (CRSP) funding recommendations to award six (6) grants totaling $400,000 to the following organizations, and to enter into grant agreements with each organization or their fiscal sponsor, for amounts not to exceed the following at this time:

Chinese Culture Foundation of San Francisco, $50,000
Community Arts Stabilization Trust, $50,000
Friends of SCRAP Inc., $50,000
Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, $50,000
Kultivate Labs, $100,000
Youth Speaks Inc., $100,000


There was no public comment.

The motion carried unanimously by the following vote:
Ayes: Collins, Musleh, Parker-Pennington, Shelby, and Shiota

 

11. New Business and Announcements

Director Remington noted that this was a historic day and expressed his appreciation for Commissioner Collins’ alliance and presence. He recognized that equity, diversity, inclusion and the upholding of human dignity is what we all strive for at the SFAC and this day speaks to that.

Commissioner Collins thanked each member of the staff and leadership for the exceptional work done and noted that art leads the way and opens pathways of understanding that only the arts can express.

Commissioner Shelby recognized the murder of George Floyd and expressed his personal experience in anticipation of today’s verdict.

There was no public comment.

 

12. Adjournment

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 3:11 p.m.

 

Posted 5/4/2021, 3:55 p.m., CED
Approved 5/3/2021