A Letter from the Boston Creates Leadership Council Co-Chairs

Dear Fellow Bostonians,

It has been a privilege to serve as Co-Chairs of the Boston Creates Leadership Council. We were honored to work with a smart, diverse, and dedicated group of leaders, who share both an abiding commitment to the arts and high aspirations for Boston.

Under the leadership of Mayor Martin J. Walsh, who served as our Honorary Chair, we were part of a dynamic and inclusive process that resulted in Boston’s first-ever cultural plan. At the heart of Boston Creates has been an extraordinary community engagement process in which over 5,000 Bostonians have participated. Although this process has required a great deal of time and effort, we had an important reason for undertaking it: to reach out to all of the people and neighborhoods in the city in order to hear about your passions, struggles, and aspirations and to enable us all to learn from one another. As a result, we have not only enabled the community dialogue necessary to create this cultural plan, but we have also planted the seeds for the partnerships and collaborations that will enable us to carry the work forward.

All along, we reminded ourselves that completing a plan was never the goal. The ultimate success of this work depends on how that plan is translated to tangible action that addresses the many opportunities and challenges before us. Now, it is time for all of us to embrace the civic responsibility that this plan invites and to engage actively to ensure that the arts, culture, and creativity thrive in our city and that we advance the many exciting priorities represented in the plan.

As we begin the shift from planning to execution, we do so with gratitude to the many civic leaders and representatives of the arts community who helped to steward the cultural planning process. We especially want to thank the thousands of Bostonians who contributed their time, energy, and insight to creating a collective vision for the future of arts and culture in Boston, and to helping us all understand what we must do to realize that vision. We are excited about that future and invite you to join us in implementing this exciting vision for Boston’s creative future.


Jim Canales
President, Barr Foundation

Lee Pelton
President, Emerson College