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On November 2, 2021 history was made in Boston with the election of Michelle Wu as Mayor. Mayor-Elect Wu is the first woman and the first person of color elected to the position. Over the last eight months the Create the Vote Coalition of Boston has worked to engage all the Mayoral Candidates to better understand our value to Boston residents and our needs.

Below is a letter the Create the Vote Boston Coalition will send to Mayor-Elect Wu on Monday November 8.

We invite Boston artists, cultural organizational leaders and creative workers to sign a welcome letter to Mayor-Elect Wu. 

Dear Mayor-Elect Wu, 

On behalf of the Create the Vote Coalition, which represents artists, culture-bearers, and organizations from every neighborhood in Boston, we wish to congratulate you on winning the election on November 2. 

Throughout the campaign, you generously offered time to connect with the individuals who make up the arts and cultural community, and committed to learning more about our sector, the challenges we face, and our ideas for how to create a thriving and inclusive city for all Bostonians as we continue to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As you assume office, we are writing to offer you our perspective, experience, and partnership as a resource to you and your administration as you build your first-term agenda. 

During our roundtable and Mayoral Forum, we spoke to you about some of the immediate needs of the sector:

  • Continuing support for the Chief of Arts and Culture, a leadership position situated within the Mayor’s Cabinet, and the Mayor’s Office of Arts & Culture as key voices for the sector.
  • Using American Rescue Plan Act Fiscal Recovery Funding to support the equitable recovery of the arts and cultural sector, which has been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and which contributes significantly to the City’s economic vibrancy
  • Working towards a significant increase in regular city funding for the arts and cultural sector over the next four years, in ways that explicitly address  the historical and present marginalization of some communities and art forms.
  • Addressing ongoing artist displacement, including the housing crisis and the need for equitable access to space to both create and show work.
  • Reforming the permitting and licensing processes in Boston that impede inclusive creative expression and cultural participation, especially by Black artists, Indigenous artists, and other artists of color. 
  • Ensuring every student in Boston can complete the Mass Core graduation requirements by hiring more arts educators across the Boston Public Schools, supporting their ongoing professional development, and committing to increasing regular access to school-based arts education.We look forward to supporting your work on these efforts and are eager to collaborate with your staff and Cabinet to implement these urgent agenda items.

Before the pandemic, arts and cultural nonprofits in Boston supported 45,889 full time jobs, generated over $1.3B in total spending, and brought in $34.9M in local tax revenue. Arts and cultural events in the Greater Boston area drew more than 21 million attendees, more than four times the combined annual attendance at all major Boston sporting events. But the pandemic has devastated our sector: since March 2020, Boston arts and cultural nonprofits lost well over $376 million in revenue. Individual creative workers living in Boston lost more than $12.7 million in personal income and over 20,000 gigs or contract jobs.

Even so, arts and cultural organizations have been vital to sustaining personal and community connections through the pandemic. The Makanda Project, a 13-piece jazz ensemble, carefully choreographed live events in Roxbury for small audiences that were streamed online to a wider audience of fans at home. The Theatre Offensive, which serves LGBTQIA+ youth throughout the city, wrote and staged two original plays and live streamed them to audiences. The Boston Gay Men’s Chorus harnessed their love for music into musical collections that celebrate and reconnect audiences and communities, releasing 10 original videos that have garnered hundreds of thousands of views and positive comments from residents of Boston and beyond. 

As the Mayor of Boston, you will have a history-making opportunity to lead Boston out of the COVID-19 pandemic and towards a more inclusive, just, and connected city. We invite you to join Create the Vote Coalition members for a working session at your earliest convenience. The arts and cultural sector will be central to your efforts, and we look forward to working with you. 


Create the Vote Boston Coalition

Who's endorsing

Anonymous New Gallery Concert Series
Humphreys Street Studios Studios
Cristina Todesco
Ami Bennitt
Raber Umphenour Midway Artist Studios
Gregory Liakos Medicine Wheel Productions Inc. (dba SPOKE)
Charlayne Murrell-Smith Boston Children's Museum
Lisa Urovitch Museum of Science, Boston
Mario Avila
James Sutherland New England Aquarium
Ted Landsmark
Jaclyn O’Riley
Kelly Gifford
Shawn LaCount Company One Theatre
Karthik Subramanian
Temple Gill
Yoshi Campbell Coro Allegro
Jessie Baxter
Stephanie Mckay
Paul Petruccelli
Bette Ann Libby Studios Without Walls
Cynthia Yee
Courtney Romanowski
Lauren Elias
Emma Greenough
Rosalind Bevan
Open Door Arts Massachusetts Open Door Arts
Temple Gill Huntington Theatre Company
Ashleigh Gordon Castle of our Skins
Open Door Arts Massachusetts
47 endorsements

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New Gallery Concert Series endorsed 2021-11-12 10:17:33 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-11 14:47:44 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-11 14:41:44 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-11 14:38:58 -0500
Midway Artist Studios endorsed 2021-11-11 13:44:34 -0500
Medicine Wheel Productions Inc. (dba SPOKE) endorsed 2021-11-09 15:28:57 -0500
Boston Children's Museum endorsed 2021-11-09 10:11:50 -0500
Museum of Science, Boston endorsed 2021-11-09 09:55:26 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-08 17:57:56 -0500
New England Aquarium endorsed 2021-11-08 14:48:30 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-08 14:38:30 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-08 12:51:47 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-08 10:09:05 -0500
Company One Theatre endorsed 2021-11-08 09:53:40 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-08 09:27:57 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-08 06:43:00 -0500
Coro Allegro endorsed via 2021-11-07 22:55:37 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-07 14:56:46 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-07 07:43:25 -0500
endorsed 2021-11-06 08:12:16 -0400
Studios Without Walls endorsed 2021-11-06 08:05:54 -0400
endorsed 2021-11-06 07:19:06 -0400
endorsed 2021-11-05 20:30:12 -0400
endorsed 2021-11-05 18:43:08 -0400
endorsed 2021-11-05 15:36:55 -0400
endorsed 2021-11-05 14:13:16 -0400
Open Door Arts endorsed 2021-11-05 13:59:27 -0400
Huntington Theatre Company endorsed 2021-11-05 13:57:01 -0400
Castle of our Skins endorsed 2021-11-05 13:44:08 -0400
endorsed 2021-11-05 13:29:27 -0400
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