Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

At the North Carolina Arts Council diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion are essential to who we are. Our commitment to these values is steadfast – it is at the heart of our mission “arts for all people.” We believe that the arts in the state are enriched when voices representing all people are respected, heard, acknowledged, and exhibited

Early history of NCAC   a.	The North Carolina Arts Council created in 1967 with a mission of “arts for all people”   b.	NCAC made grants to organizations that were nonprofits, schools or local governments  c.	In the 1970s and 80s, many new arts nonprofits were created in the state; relatively few were organizations of color led by leaders of color

The pandemic and the racial justice movement in America defined the North Carolina Arts Council’s work in 2020.

After the death of George Floyd, the Arts Council published a call to act and committed to learning how disparities of race, class, and access stand in the way of the vision of arts for all. Now, the Arts Council is engaging in active dialogue with BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) artists, arts organizations, and arts leaders and examining how its own history, practices, and organizational culture have contributed to racial inequities in the field.

The Arts Council’s work in this area has evolved. In its 50-plus years of existence, the agency has created several programs and initiatives to address racial inequities in the arts sector. The following timeline outlines several historic programs that the agency is learning from and building on as it opens a new chapter of this work.