The Right Brain Initiative receives third grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

$25,000 grant supports integrated arts programming in public schools

Portland, Ore – National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa announced today that The Right Brain Initiative, an arts education partnership of the Regional Arts & Culture Council, is one of 886 nonprofit organizations nationwide selected for an NEA Art Works grant. This is Right Brain’s third NEA award, following grants received in both 2011 and 2013.

Art Works grants support the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and enhancement of the livability of communities through the arts. The NEA received 1,515 eligible applications under the Art Works category, requesting more than $76 million in funding. Of those applications, 886 are recommended for grants, for a total of $25.8 million.

Right Brain is recommended for a $25,000 grant to improve classroom arts instruction throughout K-8 schools in the Portland metro area. Each school year, Right Brain provides professional development to hundreds of teachers, principals, and teaching artists, providing them with tools to embed theater, music, dance, visual, literary, and media arts into the curriculum. This professional training now helps educators use the arts to meet the expectations of the new Common Core State Standards.

NEA Acting Chairman Shigekawa said, “These NEA-supported projects will not only have a positive impact on local economies, but will also provide opportunities for people of all ages to participate in the arts, help our communities to become more vibrant, and support our nation’s artists as they contribute to our cultural landscape.”

“We are thrilled to have the consistent support of the National Endowment for the Arts,” said Marna Stalcup, The Right Brain Initiative Program Manager. “It is very meaningful to us to keep federal funding in our cadre of public and private funders. It means city, state and national entities are all linking arms to bring the arts to children in our region.”

For a complete listing of projects recommended for Art Works grant support, please visit the NEA website at

The Right Brain Initiative is a public-private partnership established by the Regional Arts & Culture Council to bring high quality arts education to all children in Portland area public schools. Launched in January of 2009 with 20 school partners, Right Brain now serves 20 percent of the 110,000 K-8 students in Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington Counties. This school year a total of 14,000 students in 49 schools from six districts are being served. Other partnering districts are Corbett School District, Hillsboro School District, North Clackamas Schools, Oregon Trail School District and Portland Public Schools. The organization is made up of a sustainable partnership of public schools, local government, foundations, businesses and the cultural community, which launched its effort to bring the arts to every child in the Portland area in January 2009. The program’s vision is to transform learning for all children through the arts, creativity, innovation and whole-brain thinking. The Right Brain Initiative is a project of the Regional Arts & Culture Council, with Young Audiences of Oregon & SW Washington serving as Implementation Partner. Read more online at

The Regional Arts & Culture Council is the local arts agency for Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington Counties, providing grants for artists, schools and nonprofit organizations; conducting workplace giving for arts and culture (“Work for Art”) and other advocacy efforts; presenting workshops and other forms of technical assistance; providing printed and web-based resources for artists; and integrating art into public spaces. Online at