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      VIRTUAL: Meet the Funders 2020 in Fayetteville

      • VIRTUAL: Meet the Funders 2020 Photo #1
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      June 24, 2020

      Wednesday   9:00 AM

      401 West Mountain Street
      Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701

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      VIRTUAL: Meet the Funders 2020

      Meet the Funders 2020 Panelist Bios

      Meg Bourne | Founder + CEO | Art Feeds

      Meg Bourne is the founder of Art Feeds, which she started when she was 19 years old in 2009, she has spent her adult life investing in the value of children through her work as CEO. Art Feeds believes all children are curious, imaginative, creative, innovative and our greatest resource. To fuel these valuable skills, Art Feeds creates spaces in schools and children's organizations where students feel free and safe to express themselves. This is done by providing training, curriculum, supplies and ongoing support for over 7,000 children annually in these spaces in Arkansas and around the world. You can learn more at and follow @artfeeds on Instagram. 

      Jess Anthony | Grant Programs Manager | Arkansas Arts Council

      Jess Anthony has worked as Grant Programs Manager for the Arkansas Arts Council staff since 1995. As a coordinator within the Department of Parks, Heritage, and Tourism,  he runs the Arts Council’s General Operating Support and Collaborative Project Support grant programs, creates the agency’s online grant guidelines each year, helps plan the biannual state arts conference, and oversees the state’s touring roster program for performers and visual artists, helping to select new members for the roster and maintaining the online roster itself. His work with Arkansas presenters and Arts on Tour artists extends regionally as state representative for performance issues with the regional arts funding organization the Mid-America Arts Alliance. In the past, Jess has served as an out-of-state review panelist for the Nebraska Arts Council, the Oklahoma Arts Council, the Kentucky Arts Council, and the Mid-America Arts Alliance. On a national level, he has co-chaired sessions for the Presenting and Touring peer group at two National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA) conferences.  The Arkansas Arts Council advances the arts in Arkansas each year by providing over $1.6 million in grants-in-aid to Arkansas arts organizations and other providers of cultural and educational programs. The agency also provides technical and financial assistance to support and encourage arts endeavors assisting literary, performing and visual artists in achieving standards of professional excellence.

      Megan Earnhart | Grants Manager | Arkansas Economic Development Commission

      Megan Earnhart spent two and a half years in AEDC’s Marketing and Communications division before coming to the Division of Rural Services in 2018. Megan brings with her a diverse background, having worked for both state and municipal governments. Her experience includes administration, journalism, marketing and graphic design. In 2009, she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Digital Art and Design degree from Henderson State University. That same year, she worked for the city of Caddo Valley where her roles included Office Manager, Water Clerk and Deputy Court Clerk. She later began her career in graphic design for local Arkansas advertising agencies. While working for the White Hall Journal, she earned seven Arkansas Press Association awards. Megan was born and raised in Langley, AR. She currently lives in Sheridan, AR, with her husband, John.                                                                                

      About the Division of Rural Services:
      The Arkansas Economic Development Commission, Division of Rural Services (DRS) (formerly Office the Arkansas Department of Rural Services) and the Arkansas Rural Development Commission (ARDC) were created by the Arkansas General Assembly through Act 302 of 1991, the "Arkansas Rural Development Program Act" and began operations in 1992. DRS merged with the Arkansas Economic Development Commission under Act 8 of the 2015 First Extraordinary Session.                                                                 

      DRS is charged with assisting rural communities with a population of 20,000 and under. The director and staff serve as a single point of contact for any person or group interested in issues affecting rural Arkansas. The mission of DRS and ARDC is to enhance rural quality of life for rural Arkansans without sacrificing individual freedoms or responsibilities.

      Jama Best | Executive Director | Arkansas Humanities Council

      Jama Best is executive director of the Arkansas Humanities Council, a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities whose mission is to promote the understanding and use of the humanities in Arkansas. Her decades of experience in non-profit leadership and museum management include leading popular and successful grant initiatives for the Council, including the REACH (Raising Education Achievement and Competence in the Humanities) Grant, the Helen T. Leigh Museum Field Trip Grant, Arkansas State Park Field Trip Grant, and the Operating Grant for Small Museums. She spearheaded bringing engaging museum exhibitions to the state through the Smithsonian Institution Museums on Main Street Voices & Votes:  Democracy in America (2020) and Hometown Teams:  How Sports Shape America (2018) exhibitions. A recognized expert on grant writing, Best has been invited to speak on this and other subjects to students and professionals around the state. She has served regionally as president of the Arkansas Museums Association and nationally as a member of the Federation of State Humanities Councils and the NEH Data and Evaluation Committee (Previously, the Data Task Force). Prior to joining the Council, Best held roles as an education specialist with the Old State House Museum and as a park interpreter, superintendent, and planner with the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism. With experience in education, interpretation, historic preservation and conservation, community development, grant making, programming, Best is a passionate promoter of the humanities in Arkansas and is committed to expanding opportunities for you in the state to explore the humanities.

      The initial approach for funding inquiries is a letter, phone call, or email.

      Jodi Dilday | Development Director | Arkansas Community Foundation

      As Development Director working in the Community Foundation’s Northwest Arkansas satellite office, Jody Dilday provides donor services to existing fund holders, works to establish new partnerships, and supports our community-based affiliates in Fayetteville, Carroll County, and Western Arkansas. 

      Arkansas Community Foundation is a statewide organization serving all 75 counties in Arkansas. We help Arkansans across the state give to the causes they care about, and we make grants to make life better for people in all four corners of the state. 



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