President Ellen Bullish On Local Arts

Head Shot of Ellen Bullish“We are makers, not takers,” said Ellen McCulloch-Lovell, referring to Vermont’s arts community. As quoted in the Rutland Herald (January 13), the Marlboro College president participated in a panel discussion titled “Exploring Brattleboro’s Cultural Landscape: Past, Present, and Future,” held at the Latchis Theater on January 11. “We need to be recognized as a major economic force, not simply the recipients of grants. We have to find our collective voice and clout.”

The community meeting was part of the Brattleboro CoreArts Project, established with a National Endowment for the Arts “Our Town” grant to further establish the town as a cultural center. Panelists agreed that non-profit arts organizations provide economic development in towns like Brattleboro, yet people are slow to recognize their economic value. “Historically we think of these organizations as byproducts of prosperity,” said panelist Paul Costello, executive director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development. “But arts are a sparkplug.”