Stories      |      Impact      |      Financials      |      Grant Recipients

Report to the

Photo: Chagrin Documentary Film Festival – Cody Linck, CAC-funded 12 years

Photo: Slavic Village Development – Lynn Rodemann, CAC-funded 10 years

Greetings from CAC

Last year, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture distributed more than $13 million to local nonprofits. We did so with a focus on equity, so the creative legacy of 2022 has the narratives of many instead of the few. We did so with a focus on transparency, being accountable for every grant dollar we distribute. We also did so with a focus on reliably supporting CAC-funded nonprofits because they are at the center of a healthy, vibrant community.

From one year to the next, arts and culture shapes Cuyahoga County’s stories, communities, and histories. Looking back on 2022, we celebrate the achievements of the 251 arts and culture nonprofits funded by the generosity of Cuyahoga County residents, knowing their work will serve as a catalyst for change and a source of inspiration for generations to come.

Jill Paulsen

Executive Director

Nancy Mendez

President, Board of Trustees

By the numbers


Did You Know? Cuyahoga Arts & Culture distributed more than $13 million in taxpayer dollars in 2022.

Our core grants:
General Operating Support
Project Support
Cultural Heritage

CAC also invests in:
Resident-Led Grantmaking
Support for Artists

Total granted in 2022
$ 0
Total granted to date
$ 0 M+
Total number of grants in 2022
Total number of grants to date
0 +
Total organizations funded in 2022
Total organizations funded to date
Photo: Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, CAC-funded 16 years

CAC Secures Federal Relief to Help Stabilize Arts Nonprofits

Arts and culture organizations plotted new ways forward in 2022 to serve the community. Cuyahoga Arts & Culture seized an unprecedented opportunity to bring financial relief to CAC-funded nonprofits with funds made possible by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).


By amplifying the plight and impact of the county’s nonprofit arts and culture sector at the city, county and state government levels, CAC – and industry partner organization Assembly for the Arts – secured $3.3 million from Cuyahoga County Council. The $3.3 million was evenly split between CAC and Assembly ($1.65 million to each). Every dollar the County granted to CAC was distributed to nonprofits it funded in 2022 through the Nonprofit Arts Organization Relief Program.


Together with Assembly for the Arts, CAC has helped secure $7.8 million in recovery funding for the creative economy through American Rescue Plan Act and Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds provided by Cuyahoga County since 2020.

Photo: Art Therapy Studio, CAC-funded 13 years

Statewide Recognition Applauds CAC’s DEI Efforts

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture strives to reflect the diversity of county residents through its annual grantmaking. Since 2016, CAC has led with the value of equity in its funding criteria, grantmaking practice, hiring, and resident engagement.


Last year, CAC received the Michael G. Shinn Award for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging in Philanthropy from Philanthropy Ohio for the agency’s efforts to implement equitable practices in organizational operations and its grantmaking.


Through CAC’s Cultural Heritage grant program, the agency provides flexible, multi-year support to organizations that serve culturally specific communities, many of which are historically underfunded. In 2022, 11 organizations received $215,014.


We aren’t alone in this ever evolving and continuous work. CAC-funded organizations across Cuyahoga County demonstrate their commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging, too, through their programming, hiring practices, staff training and more.

Photo: Ingenuity Cleveland – Robert Muller, CAC-funded 16 years

CAC Recognized for 15 Years of Strong Financial Stewardship

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture is a responsible steward of taxpayer dollars. For 15 years in a row – every year since 2007 when CAC first began – Cuyahoga Arts & Culture has received clean audit opinions from the Ohio Auditor of State.


This means CAC financial records indicated no findings for “recovery, material citations, material weaknesses, significant deficiencies, Single Audit findings or questioned costs,” according to the Auditor of State. As a political subdivision of the State of Ohio, CAC is required to have an audit by Ohio Auditor of State each year to verify that public funds are spent appropriately and lawfully.


CAC’s public grantmaking process and use of data were featured as a best practice in Bloomberg Associates’ Arts Data in the Public Sector: Strategies for Local Arts Agencies report in 2022.


Since 2016, the number of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color)-led and serving organizations receiving grants from CAC has tripled.


From 2016 until 2022, funding to BIPOC-led and serving organizations increased by 222%.


91% of CAC’s Cultural Heritage grant recipients are BIPOC-led and serving.


In 2022, 59% of the expert panelists who reviewed and scored all grant applications identified as People of Color.

an essential partner

trusted steward of arts and culture funding

a strong voice for nonprofit organizations

Photo: ValleyArtCenter – Michaael Steinberg, CAC-funded 16 years

Find events near you

Upcoming Events

Organizations funded by CAC offer events and programs across Cuyahoga County. In partnership with Assembly for the Arts, CAC offers to bring local arts and events information to you.

Photo: Cleveland Public Theatre – Steve Wagner, CAC-funded 16 years

In 2022, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture supported thousands of arts and cultural events in hundreds of locations across Cuyahoga County.

2022 Unaudited


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$ 12,440,168 Revenues

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$ 14,381,095 Expenses

Change in Net Position 

Net Position  

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$ 12,335,725 Committed to 2023 Grantmaking

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$ 3,328,472 Unencumbered at Start of 2023

Investing in 2023 – In November and December 2022, CAC approved $12,335,725 in grant awards for 2023, leveraging its unencumbered General Fund to support organizations and programs between 1/1/23 – 12/31/23.

Photo: Buck Out Foundation, CAC-funded 3 years

this funding was the head start the organization needed financially

we are grateful for this critical support

an effort to create a more diverse pipeline of art therapists

ioby and neighborhood connections

Resident-Led Grantmaking

Arts and culture is a powerful tool to make connections and build community within our neighborhoods. In 2022, CAC funded ioby and Neighborhood Connections to bring arts and culture to life in our communities – created by and for residents.

Amount invested in CAC funding for 32 projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland neighborhoods through the Neighbor Up Action Grants program in 2022.
$ 0
Invested to co-fund more than
420 projects to date
$ 0 +
Amount leveraged in CAC funds to help raise an additional $99,823 for 42 local arts and culture projects in 2022.
$ 0
Raised or matched for 119 projects led by Cuyahoga County residents to date
$ 0 +

Manny Velez –
52nd Annual Puerto Rican Parade and Festival

2022 ioby Match Fund

The 52nd Annual Puerto Rican Parade and Festival was a celebration of local Puerto Rican art and culture to bring together Cleveland’s residents and highlight the rich diversity of the community.

Lauren Feighan –
Kentucky Gardens Music Series

2022 Neighborhood Connections Neighbor Up Grant

Friends and neighbors attended five joyful and free outdoor summer concerts at Kentucky Gardens in Ohio City. The concerts offered a dose of nature and the sounds of local musicians Afi Scruggs, Ray Flanagan, Moises Borges, Meganne Stepka, Edwin Austin, Ian Heisey & Joe Seeholzer in a beautiful community garden setting.

Photos: ioby; Neighborhood Connections

Connecting local artists with the community

Support for Artists

With CAC support, Karamu House, SPACES, and Julia De Burgos Cultural Arts Center provided funding and resources to more than 30 local artists in 2022

Support for Artists
grants since 2018
$ 0 Mil
Total number of artists supported since 2018
80% of artists identify as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color
0 %

Support for Artists grants provide artists:

flexible funding

project funding

access to physical space

professional development

connection to institutions

Looking ahead, we are pleased to work closely with Assembly for the Arts to build upon this work.

Siaara Freeman

2022 Room in the House Fellowship – Karamu House

Siaara’s artistry represents legacy — offering reverence to the past, honoring the present and sowing seeds for the future. Karamu’s work celebrates legacy in continuum with a full understanding of how the past gives way to the future.  Siaara is creating her own legacy through poetry and programs to support other creatives while honoring and elevating culture.  

Crystal Miller – “We Belong in the Future”

2022 Urgent Art Fund – SPACES

Crystal made seven mixed media works that celebrated black feminine beauty and touched on ideas of Afro-futurism – the overall theme was that black people belong in the future. The gallery space was designed to reflect the work and invite the viewer in another world space.

Gemini Jae – Poetic Pioneers

2022 Unidos Por El Arte – Julia De Burgos Cultural Arts Center

Poetic Pioneers is an expressive writing workshop that serves as an outlet for teens. The workshop is designed for participants to discuss, express, and write about topics that help promote critical thinking and develop an awareness of the many adversities that youth experience in today’s society.

Photos: Karamu House; SPACES; Julia de Burgos Cultural Art Center

Photo: Cleveland Ballet – New Image Photography, CAC-funded 8 years


Grant Recipients

CAC is proud to support hundreds of nonprofits that bring arts and culture to residents across Cuyahoga County in 2023.

ABREPASO Flamenco 

Achievement Centers for Children 

AfricaHouse International 

America Asian Pacific Islander Organization 

America SCORES Cleveland 

American Hungarian Friends of Scouting 

American Slovenian Polka Foundation 

Apollo’s Fire 

Aradhana Committee 

Art House 

Art of Me 

Art Therapy Studio 


Artists Archives of the Western Reserve 

Arts Impact 

Arts Renaissance Tremont 

Assembly for the Arts 

Baldwin Wallace University 

Barton Center, Inc.

Baseball Heritage Museum 


Beck Center for the Arts 

Bellaire Puritas Development Corporation

Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging 

Berea Arts Fest 

BigHearted Blooms

BlueWater Chamber Orchestra

BorderLight International Theatre + Fringe Festival 

Brite Cleveland 

Broadway School of Music and the Arts 

Brooklyn Heights Service Clubs 

Buck Out Foundation 

Building Bridges 

Canalway Partners

Carolyn L. Farrell Foundation 

Case Western Reserve University 

Catholic Charities Diocese of Cleveland 

Cavani String Quartet

Cedar Fairmount Special Improvement District 

Celebrate the Arts Performance Academy

Center for Arts-Inspired Learning 

Cesear’s Forum 

Chagrin Documentary Film Festival 

Chagrin Valley Little Theatre 

Children’s Museum of Cleveland 

Choral Arts Cleveland 

City Ballet of Cleveland 

CityMusic Cleveland 

Cleveland Association of Black Storytellers 

Cleveland Ballet 

Cleveland Botanical Garden 

Cleveland Chamber Choir 

Cleveland Chamber Collective 

Cleveland Chamber Music Society 

Cleveland Chamber Symphony 

Cleveland Classical Guitar Society 

Cleveland Composers Guild 

Cleveland Cultural Gardens Federation 

Cleveland Dance Project Company

Cleveland Grays Armory Museum

Cleveland Inner City Ballet

Cleveland Institute of Art 

Cleveland Institute of Music 

Cleveland International Film Festival 

Cleveland Jazz Orchestra 

Cleveland Leadership Center 

Cleveland Museum of Art

Cleveland Museum of Natural History 

Cleveland Opera Theater 

Cleveland Philharmonic Orchestra 

Cleveland Photo Fest 

Cleveland Play House 

Cleveland Pops Orchestra 

Cleveland Pride Band

Cleveland Print Room

Cleveland Public Theatre 

Cleveland Rape Crisis Center 

Cleveland Repertory Orchestra

Cleveland Restoration Society 

Cleveland Rocks: Past, Present and Future 

Cleveland School of the Arts Board of Trustees

Cleveland Seed Bank

Cleveland Shakespeare Festival 

Cleveland Silent Film Festival and Colloquium

Cleveland TOPS Swingband 

Cleveland Treatment Center 

Cleveland Uncommon Sound Project 

Cleveland Wind Symphony

Cleveland Women’s Orchestra 

Collective Arts Network 


Colors+Youth Center 

Comité Mexicano 

Community Cup Classic Foundation 

Connecting for Kids 

Contemporary Youth Orchestra 


Coventry PEACE Campus

Coventry Village Special Improvement District 



Dancing Wheels 

Diversity Center of Northeast Ohio

Djapo Cultural Arts Institute 

Doan Brook Watershed Partnership 

Dobama Theatre 

Downtown Cleveland Alliance 


Dunham Tavern Museum 

East Cleveland Farmers’ Market Preservation Society

Edward E. Parker Museum of Art

Empowering Epilepsy

Encore Chamber Music 

Ensemble Theatre 

Environmental Health Watch

Euclid Beach Park Now

Famicos Foundation

Far West Center 

Foluke Cultural Arts Center 

Food Strong 

Fostering Hope Ohio

Friends of the East Cleveland Public Library

Friends of the McGaffin Carillon

From Me 2 U

FRONT International

Front Steps Housing and Services 

FrontLine Services 


Gardening in the District 

German Music Society

Great Lakes Science Center 

Great Lakes Theater 

Greater Cleveland Film Commission 

Greater Cleveland Neighborhood Centers Association

Greater Cleveland Urban Film Festival 

GroundWorks DanceTheater 

Group Plan Commission

Harvard Community Services Center 

Hasani Management Inc.

Heights Arts 

Heights Youth Theatre 

Henry Johnson Center 

Hispanic Police Officers Association

Historic Gateway Neighborhood Corporation

Hospice of the Western Reserve 

ICA-Art Conservation 


In Harmony Therapeutic Services 

India Festival USA 

Ingenuity Cleveland 

Inlet Dance Theatre 

International Women’s Air & Space Museum 

Italian Cultural Garden

Jennings Center for Older Adults 

Jewish Family Service Association of Cleveland 

Jewish Federation of Cleveland

Jones Road Family Development Corporation 

Julia De Burgos Cultural Arts Center 

Kaboom Collective

Karamu House 

Kulture Kids 

Lake Erie Ink 

Lake Erie Nature & Science Center 

Lakewood Young Filmmakers Academy 


LAND studio 

Larchmere PorchFest 

LatinUs Theater Company 

Les Délices 

LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland 

Literary Cleveland 

Little Italy Redevelopment Corporation

Little Lumpy’s Center for Educational Initiatives 



Maelstrom Collaborative Arts 

Malachi Center

Maltz Museum

Mandel JCC 

May Dugan Center 

Men of Independence

MidTown Cleveland, Inc 

Mojuba Dance Collective 

Morgan Art of Papermaking Conservatory and Educational Foundation 


Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland 

Music and Art at Trinity Cathedral 

Naach Di Cleveland 

NAMI Greater Cleveland

Nature Center at Shaker Lakes 

Near West Theatre 

New Avenues to Independence

No Exit

North Coast Men’s Chorus 

North East Ohio Musical Heritage Association

North Union Farmers Market 

Northeast Ohio Hispanic Center for Economic Development

Northwest Neighborhoods CDC

Notre Dame College 

OCA Greater Cleveland

Oh Sew Powerful, Inc.

One South Euclid

Open Doors Academy 

Open Tone Music 

Pakistani Cultural Garden

P.A.L.S. for Healing 

Parma Area Fine Arts Council 

Piano Cleveland 

Playhouse Square 

Poise Entertainment Education Inc

Polish Village Parma 

Praxis Fiber Workshop

Providence House

Quire Cleveland 

Rainey Institute 

Reaching Heights 

Refresh Collective

Refugee Response

Renovare Music 

Roberto Ocasio Foundation

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 

Rollin’ Buckeyez

Roots of American Music 

Sankofa Fine Art Plus 

Schmooze Ohio

Shaker Arts Council

Shaker Historical Society 

Slavic Village Development 

Slovenian Museum and Archives 

SOS: Strengthening Our Students 


StandUP! For Change

Stellar Acrobatic Dance Academy 

Suburban Symphony Orchestra 

Talespinner Children’s Theatre 

Tender Hearts Crusades 

The Association of African American Cultural Garden

The City Club of Cleveland 

The Cleveland Opera

The Cleveland Orchestra 

The Gathering Place 

The German Central

The Harvard Square Center 

The Land

The Makers Alliance

The Movement Project 

The Music Settlement 

The Musical Theater Project 

The Singing Angels 

Thea Bowman Center 

Tremont West Development Corporation

Ukrainian Cultural Arts Association of Greater Cleveland

Ukrainian Museum-Archives 

Union Miles Development Corporation

University Circle Inc.

Upcycle Parts Shop

UpStage Players

Ursuline College 

Valley Art Center 

Verb Ballets 

VIVA Bavaria 

West Park Kamm’s Neighborhood Development 

West Shore Chorale

West Side Catholic Center 

Western Reserve Chorale 

Western Reserve Historical Society 

Western Reserve Land Conservancy 

Westown Community Development Corporation 

Windsong, Cleveland’s Feminist Chorus 

Woodland Cemetery Foundation of Cleveland

Writers in Residence

Youth Challenge 

Zygote Press 

a message of resilience and hope

creative art opportunities in an emotionally safe and supportive environment

we both look to inspire and strengthen our community

Photo: The LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland – Every Angle Photography and Pro Bono CLE, CAC-funded 6 years