May 4, 2020

A ‘Thank You’ to Our Boards

Members of the Scottsdale Public Art Advisory Board and public art staff tour artworks throughout the city, including Garden of Evidence by Dennis Oppenheim.
Photo: Scottsdale Arts

Tomorrow is #GivingTuesdayNow! This past week on our social media accounts and the Scottsdale Arts Connections blog, we’ve given special shout-outs of our tremendous gratitude to generous groups who make the arts possible for all. Today, we give thanks to the backbone of Scottsdale Arts—our volunteer leaders—with a letter from Scottsdale Alison Lewis, chair of the Scottsdale Arts Board of Trustees.


Local volunteering is the thread that binds communities and makes them strong. We are so fortunate to have an amazing group of volunteers, who are passionate about our mission. They love the arts and understand how it brings us together, builds empathy, and feeds our soul—all of which is so sorely needed at this time. In any given year, we have 800–1,000 volunteers doing many jobs, such as board work, acting in leadership roles, working as docents and ushers, and helping with Canal Convergence, the Scottsdale Arts Festival, our wonderful educational programs, and other special events. I am so grateful for each and every one of them. Last week, this series of blog posts thanked some of those volunteers, like our docents and ushers. 

Even though our buildings are shut down right now, many of our volunteers are going strong. Our Board of Trustees, who are all volunteers, give their time and treasure, and their considerable expertise, to help us be a stronger, smarter, leaner, and focused organization. In their day jobs, they are working hard, helping businesses and nonprofits with Paycheck Protection Program loans, working with health care providers on critical issues, guiding teachers through their virtual lessons, and advising the governor—so you can see why I am so grateful, every day, to have these amazing people willing to put other pressing matters aside to give their attention to Scottsdale Arts. 

We also have many talented and thoughtful volunteers on the advisory boards. These individuals provide great input and expertise as Friends of the Center, SMoCA Advisory Council, Public Art Advisory Board, Learning & Innovation Committee, and The Avante-Garde on Second Street. At every meeting, they give their time and expertise and provide invaluable input to our division directors and staff. I am always amazed at the breadth of experience these volunteers have and am so appreciative of the time and effort they put into their work with Scottsdale Arts. Even now, they are meeting virtually, staying connected and sharing their passion. We could not do all we do without them. 

A famous quote says, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” Our volunteers give of their time so freely, provide a great service, and make our organization so much better. They bind our community and make it stronger. We couldn’t do it all without them. 

I have been told that in this tumultuous time it is particularly important to practice gratitude. That is an easy one for me—I am so grateful for all our volunteers. May you all stay safe and healthy. I can’t wait to see you all in person 

Alison Lewis 

Chair, Scottsdale Arts Board of Trustees 


#GivingTuesdayNow, on May 5, is a day of generosity and unity—a day to come together and give back in response to the unprecedented need caused by COVID-19. At a time when we are all experiencing the pandemic, generosity is what brings people of all backgrounds together across the globe. Scottsdale Arts is sharing tremendous thanks to arts lovers and advocates for their support in good times and in challenging times alike. 

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