Americans for the Arts Cancels Annual National Arts Action Summit Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Americans for the Arts has announced that in alignment with COVID-19 health recommendations and warnings issued by the Washington, DC, government, it has made the decision to cancel the National Arts Action Summit and postpone the Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts & Public Policy, which were set to take place March 30-31 in Washington, DC. The annual advocacy event and lecture were in their 33rd year.

With the health and safety of event attendees as Americans for the Arts’ highest priority, the organization is creating a suite of National Arts Action Summit virtual briefings on arts policy issues that will include information on the effect of COVID-19 on the arts community.  

“The effect the coronavirus is already having on our communities including arts organizations and artists means that advocacy this year will be more important than ever,” commented Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “It’s not just arts organizations and individual artists who will suffer economically—the ripple effect will also be felt in every city and town and community, leading to losses for restaurants, bars, parking facilities, and hotels. Remember, the nonprofit arts are an industry that has a $166 billion annual economic impact in America.” Americans for the Arts will continue advocacy efforts in collaboration with the broad nonprofit sector to include the arts in a COVID-19 Relief and Economic Stimulus Package.

Americans for the Arts has created the Coronavirus Resource and Response Center to provide up-to-date news and resources for the arts and culture field. The organization continues to closely monitor recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and the federal and D.C. governments as developments evolve concerning the coronavirus.

As of today, Americans for the Arts plans to convene the Annual Convention—which will include a strong advocacy component—and the Public Art and Civic Design Conference in late June in Washington, D.C. To ensure the health and safety of attendees, Americans for the Arts will work with meeting experts to take active preventative measures for these meetings.

Americans for the Arts is the leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts and arts education in America. With offices in Washington, D.C. and New York City, it has a record of 60 years of service. Americans for the Arts is dedicated to representing and serving local communities and creating opportunities for every American to participate in and appreciate all forms of the arts. Additional information is available at

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