As announced yesterday, Createquity is blazing a new path and taking the summer off to make it happen. We’ve launched a fundraiser to help make the transition possible – please consider a donation!

Now we get to the second major announcement of the week: the Createquity editorial team just doubled in size! I am thrilled to share that John Carnwath, Jackie Hasa, and Devon Smith have joined Talia Gibas, Daniel Reid, and me in making our little virtual think tank here a little less little and a lot more awesome.

These are some of the smartest and most capable people I’ve ever met, and I couldn’t be more excited about the collective brainpower of this group. Jackie has been involved with Createquity the longest, having served a term as a Writing Fellow back in Spring 2012. In the two years since then, Jackie has helped out Createquity in an ad hoc capacity as a Contributing Editor, and had a hand in bringing to life such articles as Ann Markusen’s Fuzzy Concepts, Proxy Data, Talia Gibas and Amanda Keil’s The Cultural Data Project and Its Impact on Arts Organizations, and Calcagno Cullen’s A Tale of Two Strategies: Participation and Organization at Adobe Books and SFMOMA. In addition to her crackerjack analytical skills, Jackie is an exceptionally gifted communicator and community organizer, and I’m overjoyed to have her on board as a full member of the team!

I met John in late 2012, where he wowed me with some perceptive questions about a speech I’d just given at the University of Chicago Cultural Policy Center about the future of arts research. After noticing some equally perceptive comments from him on Createquity and other sites, I reached out to him to see if he’d be willing to write a guest post on the charitable tax deduction (which was at the time under some threat due to the negotiations surrounding the so-called “fiscal cliff”). That article has since become a traffic monster, racking up dozens of Google search inquiries a day on its way to becoming the most-viewed post on Createquity ever. John subsequently used his research talents to unlock the mystery of film tax credits in another blockbuster post for us earlier this year, and more recently worked with Rebecca Chan to develop her article on state-designated cultural districts that was published last week. John is quite literally a gentleman and a scholar, and we’re privileged to have him with us. (Also, when I said these additions make our team “a lot more awesome,” I wasn’t kidding – John was Dean of the Chicago chapter of The Awesome Foundation!)

I’ve known Devon since we were classmates at the Yale School of Management many moons ago. To say Devon is a superstar is soft-pedaling it mightily. A bona fide thought leader in the realm of social media for nonprofits, she spends most of her time these days devising digital strategies for the likes of the Rockefeller Foundation and Planned Parenthood. But she’s never lost her affection for the arts, and has a knack for blowing our collective minds with thought explosions like last year’s Google Doc read ’round the world and her 7,500-word interview with Barry Hessenius. In the year or two before she landed her current job, she was amassing an amazing portfolio of blog posts and presentations at her website, 24 Usable Hours, the archive of which is still well worth reading today. I’m so glad Devon has decided to return to arts writing on this platform!


Full bios and headshots below:

jc_iiJohn Carnwath is a consultant at WolfBrown, a research and consulting firm serving arts organizations, cultural agencies, and foundations. John’s work primary focuses on arts funding, cultural policy, and related issues of measurement and evaluation. Previously, John developed content for the theater section of the Chicago Artists Resource and served as the Dean of the Chicago chapter of the Awesome Foundation. John holds a PhD from Northwestern University, where he taught undergraduate seminars including “The Economics of the Performing Arts” and “Organizational Structures and Production Processes in contemporary US Theater,” while writing his dissertation on the institutional development of municipal theaters in Germany.

Jackie HasaJackie Hasa is a generalist through and through. Jackie has deep roots in the Bay Area arts nonprofit community, having worked in marketing and development for the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, and American Institute of Architects, and as a public programs fellow with the Emerging Arts Professionals Bay Area. Currently, she serves as Community Partnerships Manager at the David Brower Center in Berkeley, an organization focused on the power of the arts to illuminate critical environmental and social issues.  In her spare time, she helps organize psychogeographical forays into the hidden corners of the Bay Area, helping produce Journey to the End of the Night since 2007 and Wanderers Union since 2010.

Devon Smith SXSWDevon Smith is the Director of Social Media and Analytics at Threespot, a DC-based digital agency serving nonprofits and government agencies. In this capacity, her recent clients include the Brookings Institution, James Irvine Foundation, National Park Service, Pew Charitable Trusts, Planned Parenthood, and Smithsonian Institution. In the past two years, she has been a featured speaker at more than a dozen conferences in the U.S. and Australia.  Earlier in her career, Devon worked for the Actors Theatre of Louisville, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Roundabout Theatre Company, Seattle’s Washington Ensemble Theatre, and the World Science Festival. Devon holds an MBA from Yale School of Management and an MFA in theatre management from Yale School of Drama, as well as two Bachelors degrees from the University of Washington. She is a novice homebrewer, a published playwright, and an avid vagabond.