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Don't Say They Never Gave You Anything • NAG, NAG, NAG


Don't Say They Never Gave You Anything

Paul G. Allen is one of the founders of Microsoft. According to, Allen is the 11th richest man in the world. Fortunately, what sometimes comes with incredible wealth, is an incredible sense of philanthropy.

In 2007 alone, the Seattle-based Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, awarded $9.6 million in grants to various arts, cultural, health and human services, and youth engagement organizations in the Pacific Northwest. The two Idaho organizations that received funds this year from the foundation were the University of Idaho, which received $60,000 for developing assessment tools for effective K-12 education as part of its McCall Outdoor Science School. Closer to home, the Boise Contemporary Theater received a $10,000 grant for its upcoming production Maria Dahvana Headley's Last of the Breed.

The foundation's senior director, Susan Coliton, spoke on the foundation's broader scope, and program officer Huong Vu—who focuses on arts and culture grants—explained how and why BCT applied for and received the $10,000 grant.

Vu said, "We were so impressed with what [BCT] is doing to celebrate culture in Boise. They raised over $2 million to open the Fulton Street Theater. They hold over 100 arts events and serve 10,000 audience members per year which is a really impressive figure," she said. "They also have 1,000 subscribers per year. They are perfectly aligned with our interests in supporting contemporary work. It made for a really compelling grant. What we noticed in Boise is that the art community is networked quite well. They talk about each other."

Coliton added, "When we ran this report in Idaho, we found that 80 percent of [what we've given] is in the arts sector in Idaho. I think that speaks strongly on how well networked those organizations are. They share resources, they share information.

"We started making grants in Sun Valley early on and I think the word spread. A lot of organizations in Boise started applying for grants."

"We've been supporting the Boise Art Museum for quite awhile," Vu said. "We give them annual programming grants. The applications from the arts organizations in Boise are among the most competitive," she said. "They do a great job. And we support the Boise Art Museum, the Idaho Humanities Council, Idaho Shakespeare and the Log Cabin Literary Center. We also do some work in Sun Valley. We've supported Company of Fools for the last six or seven years, as well as the Sun Valley Center for the Arts. They have a really strong multidisciplinary program."

The foundation only awards grants twice per year and its proposal deadlines are March 15 and August 15. If you are interested in receiving a grant, submit a letter of inquiry at least a month before the proposal deadlines.

For more information, visit PGAFamily


Awards in the Nampa Art Guild's Centennial Juried Art Show were presented by Boise State professor John Taye during the October 17 reception. Winners are as follows: Jo Engstrom won Best of Show and $200; Joyce Green received $100 and the Judge's Choice Award; Bill Campbell received $100 with his Gold Award; Pat Miller received $85 for the Silver; Barbara Watkins walked away with $75 and the Bronze Award; Pam Grant, James Kelly, Marianne Konvalinka and Nancy Wiley each pocketed $50 and a Merit Award; Shanan Hoppe and Donald Nafus saw their bank accounts grow by $50 each with a Nampa Art Guild Award; Special Awards and $50 each went to Nancy Wiley and Sylvia Wilson Wood; Pat Miller added $25 to the $85 and a Floral Award; and Kristy Albrecht, Jane L. Dean, Cheryl Eshelman, Kathy Holzer, Ramona Jones, Marianne Konvalinka, Susan Kirsch, Donald Nafus, Welles Seifert and Dwight Williams didn't walk away with big money but with bragging rights as recipients of a Special Merchandise Award.

The show will be up through Oct. 25, the Nampa Civic Center, 311 Third St. S., Nampa. 208-468-5500,