Encouraging Arts-And Lenses in Corporate Giving Programs

Saturday, June 15, 4:45 pm - 6:00 pm

Encouraging arts-related investment from corporations means helping corporate giving officers connect the dots between the arts and other non-arts areas where corporations dedicate their funding. Your peers will share winning strategies and tactics in this discussion session.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Gain casemaking tools and strategies related to arts-and conversations with corporate representatives.
  2. Learn how to adapt your language to anchor it in the non-arts strategic pillars of corporate prospects.
  3. See how corporations and CSR program officers have connected the arts to other philanthropy giving.


Christen Boone
President & CEO
Fund for the Arts
Louisville, Kentucky

Christen McDonough Boone is the President & CEO of the Fund for the Arts, building a stronger, more vibrant community through the Arts. Founded in 1949, Fund for the Arts is the regional arts agency and the largest funder of the arts in the Greater Louisville region.  The Fund raises $9 million annually through a united arts campaign, drives arts access, education and innovation throughout the region, and supports more than 100 organizations, artists and initiatives.  Before joining the Fund for the Arts, Christen served in leadership roles for some of the country’s most treasured cultural institutions.  She has raised more than $250 million for regional nonprofit organizations, including Actors Theatre of Louisville, the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Cincinnati’s Fine Arts Fund, and The Parklands of Floyds Fork, one of the nation’s largest new urban parks.  She served as Director of the Greater Louisville Project and founded the Boone Group, coaching and consulting in nonprofit and community development.  Christen serves as the Chair of the national Private Sector Council for the Americans for the Arts, and locally on the board of Greater Louisville Inc., Louisville Downtown Partnership, Center for Nonprofit Excellence, Arts and Cultural Alliance, the Governors Scholars Program and chairs the GSP Foundation.

Jessica Stern
Private Sector Initiatives Programs Manager
Americans for the Arts
New York, New York

Jessica joined Americans for the Arts as the Private Sector Initiatives Program Manager in January 2018. Before relocating to New York to join Americans for the Arts, Jessica acted as the Membership and Resources Manager for the Nonprofit Association of Oregon (NAO), providing oversight of NAO’s statewide membership program while curating and reinventing its online platform of nonprofit management best practice resources. Prior to NAO, Jessica spent nearly five years working with Portland’s local business committee for the arts, Business for Culture & the Arts (BCA), delivering programs that engaged employees from BCA’s 200+ business members, managing all marketing and communications strategies, and retaining and cultivating corporate and community partnerships. Jessica has also served in development roles at Metropolitan Youth Symphony and Literary Arts; and has freelanced as an independent web designer and developer.

Jessica graduated from Portland State University with Master’s in Public Administration with a Certificate in Nonprofit Management and from Lewis & Clark College with a BA in Ethnomusicology and French Studies. She co-founded Portland Emerging Arts Leaders and helped design and grow its emerging leader mentorship program. Aside from thinking about creating an ever-vibrant arts community, Jessica enjoys cycling, hiking, cooking and listening to music from all over the world.

Heidi Halvarson
Philanthropy Specialist
Medtronic Foundation

Heidi Jedlicka Halvarson is a Philanthropy Specialist for the Medtronic Foundation who serves staff and community partners by connecting plan to processes and ideas to resources.

Heidi believes in the powerful combination of planning & policy and that well-governed organizations are strong organizations. Heidi has moved through the social sector in grant funded positions, as a grantseeker, and as a grantmaker. She is passionate about the intersection of the arts, activism, and public health globally.

Heidi is Blackbaud Grantmaking Certified and has a Project Management Certification from University of Minnesota. She serves on both the Minnesota and Corporate steering committees for PEAK Grantmaking. Heidi holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theater from College of St. Benedict and is a Master of Public Affairs candidate at the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs.