Cate O’Hagan, executive director of Arts Central, has been working in the arts and culture field for over three decades. By awarding Cate the honor of Bend 2030 Vision Hero, Bend 2030 recognizes and applauds O’Hagan’s leadership in arts education, public art and community improvement.
Six years ago, Arts Central represented by O’Hagan, was chosen by Bend 2030 as the Lead Partner for arts and culture. To begin implementing the Bend 2030 community vision, she took the initiative to draft a cultural plan. In the key vision statement for an Active and Thriving Arts Scene, it is stated that “Bend recognizes and supports the arts and culture as a vital part of the community and a significant economic engine in the region’s economy, promoting its continued strengthening and development.”
At the core of the Bend 2030 Action Plan to achieve the vision is the creation of an arts advocacy group, with Arts Central as the facilitating and fiscal sponsor. Under O’Hagan’s leadership, Arts Central initiated the creation of the Arts & Culture Alliance, a group of 25 arts and culture organizations who have banded together for the common purpose of generating more public awareness and support of their work.
At present, the combined expense budgets of these organizations exceed 20 million dollars. That’s over 20 million dollars pumped back into the community to pay for goods and services and payroll. Employees and contractors of arts and culture organizations pay taxes here, shop here and raise their families here, so the multiplier effect is vastly greater than 20 million.
The formation of the Arts & Culture Alliance has resulted in a clear picture of the impact of our creative industry in Bend and beyond. And the work is just beginning, as by definition the creative industry expands into broadcasting, print media, architecture, graphic design and technology. Bend does indeed have a creative industry that is one of the significant drivers of our economic development.
Robin Gyorgyfalvy, Bend 2030 Board Member, (541) 383-4786