Member Spotlight: Angels Gate Cultural Center
Interview with Executive Director, Amy Eriksen
What is Angels Gate Cultural Center? What is the population that you serve?
Angels Gate is a place of creative discovery, exploration and enlightenment. The Gate strives to provide the Southern California community with a year-round schedule of gallery exhibitions and community classes. We provide professional work-studio space for 52 artists, including musicians, ceramicists, painters, sculptors, writers, photographers, printmakers and jewelers. The Gate emerged from a group of San Pedro artists in the 1970s that created artist studios and exhibition space within the 1940s era Army barracks of Angels Gate Park. Our community class program offers arts education for ages 5-85. Additionally, over 50 Studio Artists open their doors biannually for the community to see what they create in our Open Studios Day.
How has Angels Gate benefitted from membership with The Nonprofit Partnership?
The connection to other non-profit leaders has been the largest benefit from our membership with The Nonprofit Partnership. Hearing that the issues we have at The Gate around fundraising and governance are discussed by all leaders brings new learning about our own situations. Also, the great leaders in the non-profit field that are brought in to lead workshops make the learning in these settings top-notch. Every workshop brings new ideas that can be brought back to Angels Gate Cultural Center and put in place right away or put into the stream of projects going on here.
What is Angels Gate looking to accomplish by participating in “Sustainability Planning: A Team Approach”?
Because of the level of learning at TNP workshops, I knew there would be new ideas to add to the work we started last year around strategic planning. The workshop also brought in our team, so a board and two staff members are receiving the knowledge together. This can be brought back to the organization in myriad ways that strengthen the bonds of those stakeholders trying to make Angels Gate better. Being such a small group in this workshop, I know we are going to really be able to dig into our own organization’s issues and grow exponentially from this summer of classes. And each organization that is represented in this group is so diverse that best practices can be shared freely. The best part is to receive first-hand knowledge from other organizational leaders working to better their own orgs each day. This is also the first workshop I have seen TNP run with a grant component, the money being used by each organization to work their strategic plan once it is ready. Having funds to make sure that the strategic plan gets implemented in a sustainable way is invaluable.