Power of Culture Blog
This asynchronous anti-racism course supports our arts and culture ecosystem — and its leadership — in progressing equitable practices.
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On June 16 Empower Success Corps (ESC) hosted a celebration for its 40th anniversary at Gore Place in Waltham, Massachusetts. At the event, Executive Director Michael J. Bobbitt accepted the ESC Nonprofit Impact Leadership Award on behalf of Mass Cultural Council. ESC recognized Michael and the Agency for leadership in increasing investment and participation in the cultural sector and promoting it as a dynamic force for enriching communities, growing the economy, fostering diversity and inclusion, and igniting creativity. Michael was joined at the event by Council Chair Nina Fialkow and Vice-Chair Marc Carroll.
Empower Success Corps was founded in 1982 by Caleb Loring, Jr. and James Curvey, both former senior executives at Fidelity Investments and the first board chair Ezra Merrill, former president of H.P. Hood & Company. Their goal was to provide opportunities for individuals to use their professional skills to help nonprofits build capacity and create impact in their communities. Over the past 40 years, ESC has helped more than 2,000 nonprofits, schools, and government agencies embrace opportunities and address challenges successfully.
“We wish to honor Michael for his leadership in helping cultural nonprofits navigate the pandemic landscape and for advocating strongly for equitable funding and increased funding for the arts,” said ESC Board Chair Bonnie Clendenning. “ESC shares Michael’s commitment to advancing racial equity and increasing support for under-resourced organizations.”
During his first 18 months as Executive Director, Michael led the Agency through the development and implementation of its first-ever Racial Equity Plan and worked with staff, Council Members, and cultural sector advocates to secure a historic $60.1M in COVID relief funding and an increase in Mass Cultural Council’s annual state appropriation.
Mass Cultural Council is honored to receive this award.