Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation Hosts Launch Party for Gen Ops Plus , 1/27

Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation Hosts Launch Party for Gen Ops Plus , 1/27

After 50 years of supporting the arts in Chicago, the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation is throwing a party to launch a major expansion of its arts grant making strategy on Monday, January 27, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at 10pin. For half a century, the Foundation has been making general operations grants to "small" professional arts organizations - those with annual budgets under $1 million.

"We currently support 170 small arts organizations in Chicago - music, theatre, dance, literature, visual arts," said J. David Farren, Executive Director of the Foundation. "They are the life blood of the city's artistic vitality. Pushing boundaries. Fostering new and emerging talent. The question we've been asking ourselves is 'how can we help and encourage them more?"

In answer to this question, the Foundation is launching Gen Ops Plus - short for general operations plus - an array of additional organizational development opportunities. These additional opportunities include more one-on-one coaching from staff and consultants, peer sharing, trainings tailored to grantee needs, and a new grant fund for select organizational capacity building efforts.

"Providing continued general operations support for our arts grantees is critical to their health and well-being," Farren continued. "Our 'plus' offerings will help organizations build their internal capacities, which in turn will help them more fully achieve their artistic visions."

"Organizational capacity building may sound boring to some," offered the Foundation's Director of Chicago Program, Arthur Pearson. "But it's what a lot of our grantees tell us they need. And for those who really run with it, building stronger arts organizations is its own creative act. Just ask Lookingglass Theatre or TimeLine Theatre. "

To underscore the fact that organizational capacity building doesn't have to be stuffy, the Foundation is hosting its launch party at a bowling alley. More than 200 guests are expected to attend the Gen Ops Plus Launch Party at 10pin Bowling Lounge, 330 N. State St., Chicago in iconic Marina City.

"We're planning for a big turnout," said Ellen Placey Wadey, the Foundation's new Program Officer. "Bowling. Food. Drink. A brief announcement about our expanded arts grantmaking strategy. What could be more fun?"

The Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation invests in organizations and partnerships engaged in Land Conservation and Artistic Vitality in the Chicago region and the South Carolina Lowcountry. For more information about Gen Ops Plus and the Launch Party, please contact Ellen Placey Wadey at 312-977-2707 or via email at

Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, 35 E. Wacker Drive, Suite 2600, Chicago, Illinois 60601. More information can be found at or by calling 312-977-2700.

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