About the IACA

Illinois Arts Council Agency Strategic Plan 2013-2018

Illinois Arts Council Agency

Strategic Plan 2013 – 2018


Core Value
E pluribus unum (out of many, one) is the de facto motto of the United States of America. President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed that government shall be “of the people, by the people, for the people.” The Illinois Arts Council Agency declares with One Voice that we shall be Better Together with the Arts.

To build a strong, creative, and connected Illinois through the arts.

Guiding Principles
The Illinois Arts Council Agency abides by guiding principles to keep focused on a single purpose, that of the creative well-being of Illinois. Illinoisans deserve to have the best that can be offered to learn, connect, and advance.

The Illinois Arts Council Agency shall be vigilant that all arts goals and strategies lead to expressions of excellence.

Catalyst by Design
The Illinois Arts Council Agency is a catalyst for designing and building a more creative society in Illinois. The Agency shall use its financial resources and human capital to inspire Illinoisans towards greater creativity and productivity.

Vitality for a vibrant economy
Illinois’ economic vitality must continue to be stimulated. Each spark of creativity must be capitalized and kept vibrant to strengthen the economy.

Unity in diversity
The arts are not practiced in isolation. The Illinois Arts Council Agency promotes unity among diverse communities. Differences shared create unique mosaics; they enrich the lives of Illinoisans.

Stewardship of the public trust
The Illinois Arts Council Agency is a governmental body of the State of Illinois. The Agency is mindful of taxpayers’ dollars that advance Illinois Arts. The Illinois Arts Council Agency is the steward of this great responsibility.


Three driving forces:

Learn, Connect, Advance

Learn (an investment in our future)
Arts in Education is a priority for the 2013 – 2018 Strategic Plan of the Illinois Arts Council Agency. Investment in arts in education prepares the next generation for the future creative workforce, a major asset of United States within the competitive global economy. The agency will vigorously pursue resources for learning opportunities in the arts, in and out of school, and for life-long learning environments for all Illinoisans.

Goals (learn):

  • Arts in Education: Establish the arts as the central educational force.
  • Employment Opportunities: Promote youth participation in the arts to develop skills and careers. Motivate and support artists and organizations to flourish in a forward moving and creative state.
  • Knowledge and Resources: Ensure that all Illinoisans have open access to Arts Learning Environments.

Connect (Better Together)
The Illinois Arts Council Agency recognizes that the best work happens outside of isolation. We are Better Together. The Agency will exercise its mandate by building and sustaining collaborations and partnerships across Illinois.

Goals (connect):

  • Communication: The Agency will work towards a Shared Vision and One Voice for the Arts in Illinois.
  • Cooperation: Advance shared goals by working with governmental bodies and private entities.  
  • Celebration: Maximize the 2015 50th anniversary of the Illinois Arts Council Agency to rally Public Will for the Arts.

Advance (vitality and the economy)
The Illinois Arts Council Agency cultivates artists and organizations, which are vital to the economy of Illinois, providing culture, employment, and revenue. This ensures a Quality of Life and Quality of Mind, which attracts residents, visitors, and businesses.

Goals (advance):

  • Affirmation: Offer a comprehensive range of grants and programs to enhance a wide range of artistic and organizational practices.
  • Vibrant Economy: Enhance operations and economic influence of the cultural not-for-profit sector across Illinois with a focus on employment.
  • Place-Making: Foster strong communities locally and statewide with a sense of place that is energetic, creative, and productive.