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Call for Panelists

Jen Lawless, Operations Director

Updated 12/28/20 to reflect process changes due to COVID-19


As part of our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Plan, we’ve created a new process for broadening our pool of panelists.

Mass Cultural Council contracts with people in the cultural sector to review applications to our grant programs. Grants are reviewed during panels, and we call the people reviewing grants “panelists.”

Mass Cultural Council panelists include artists, educators, administrators, community leaders, and other people involved in the arts, humanities, and sciences. Panelists are provided a stipend for serving as a grant reviewer. The stipend is calculated based on the time required by each program and whether or not the panelist is required to take part in site visits prior to the panel. Panelists will also receive a travel stipend for travel to and from the office on the day of the panel meeting (when panel meetings are not remote).

To ensure each panel represents diversity in a variety of areas, Mass Cultural Council considers the following factors when putting together a panel:

  • Representation across gender, age, race, ethnicity, and disability, in order to reflect Massachusetts’ overall diversity.
  • Geographic distribution representing all regions of Massachusetts including both urban and rural areas.
  • Artistic disciplines and sub-disciplines.
  • Organizational budget size, to include small, medium, and large institutions.
  • A variety of roles including board members, administrators, artistic directors, education specialists, and others, as well as individual artists.

Panelist Responsibilities

  • Adhere to panelist review process
  • Some panelists must conduct between three and five site visits
  • Evaluate applications and proposals submitted to Mass Cultural Council
  • Score applications according to program review criteria
  • Provide funding recommendations

A panelist’s time commitment will vary depending on the review panel materials. Due to COVID-19, all panel meetings will be conducted via Zoom and paced appropriately, in some cases over consecutive days, so that panelists don’t spend an inordinate amount of time on the computer. Panels will be led by staff in the Eastern Time Zone.

If you are interested in serving as a panelist, please complete a Panelist Registration Form. We cannot guarantee placement on a panel. We know there are more qualified potential panelists than panelist opportunities. We will carefully consider everyone that completes a registration form.

Selected panelists will be contacted by phone, email, or mail. Thank you for your interest.

If you have questions about the form, contact the Mass Cultural Council staff connected to the program you are interested it.

Register as a Potential Panelist

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