ArtsConnection Leadership Connects and Reflects

L: Debra Peltz, Chair of the Board of Directors R: Rachel Watts, Executive Director

Our Board of Directors

Debra Peltz, Chairman
Linda LeRoy Janklow, Founding Chairman
Lisa Plepler, Chairman Emeritus
Robert A. Pruzan, Vice Chairman
Robert W. Downes, Treasurer
Theodore S. Berger, Secretary

Patricia Morris Carey, Ph.D.
Ada Ciniglio
Emily Ford
Jawad Haider
Lynne S. Katzmann
Josephine Magliocco

David Monn
Douglas Schoen
Amy Sung
Chad Tredway
Stephanie Wagner
Louise Hartwell White
Hon. Gonzalo Casals, Ex-Officio

Richard H. Levy, Founding Executive Director
Steven Tennen, Executive Director
Rachel Watts, Executive Director

That class was phenomenal. . .to my delight (and relief!), when I looked back in on [my 9 year old son] he was engaged. . .the teaching artist running the class was super. . .I just wanted to pass along a huge thank you to your teaching artist for bringing my son out of his Zoom strike.”

–Elementary school parent

Connections through Virtual Learning

Bringing Screens to Life for our Elementary School Learners

Our youngest learners—full of energy, curiosity and always eager to play—were engaged by our teaching artists to activate their imaginations and immerse themselves in a world of discovery beyond their current reality of sitting in front of a screen. Underlying every arts experience was the goal of supporting our children as art-makers and helping them collaborate and share with classmates, key ingredients of ArtsConnection’s successful arts programming, in-person and, no less so, remotely.

Developing an Artistic Voice in
Middle School

During a time when it would have been so easy to turn off one’s camera or not participate, engaging with new tools and ideas for artistic expression drew our middle school students into becoming active learners. ArtsConnection’s teaching artists knew that early adolescents were figuring out how to navigate in the altered landscape and met the challenge of supporting them, using their own expertise with technology and as performers, to help students build knowledge and capacity and learn to work and think like artists.

Sustaining a Teen Community of Creative Thinkers

The creativity and engagement of our teen advisors, artists, writers, curators, and audiences cannot be stopped! Technology is second nature to them, and so the transition to virtual programming was one of the most seamless parts of our programming year. With only a week’s turnaround in ArtsConnection’s switch to a remote format in the early spring, we are proud of—and also learned a lot from—a generation of young people who were enthusiastic about staying involved, building a community and forging their pathways to their next steps toward college and career during these difficult times.

I’m forever grateful to my wonderful experiences with ArtsConnection in TRaC and as an intern, and I’m so happy to be able to give back to an organization that made an impact on me in any way I can!

–former TRaC participant and Teen Programs intern

2020 In Review

School Partnerships

Thank you to our partners in education. We are grateful for your collaboration.

PS 18
PS 24
PS 32
PS 38
PS/IS 66
PS 95
PS 96
PS 130
PS 132
PS 147
PS 163
PS 199
PS 226
IS 228
PS 230
PS 261
MS 266
PS 281
PS 289
MS 352
PS 375
PS 396
PS 889
Academy of Arts and Letters
The Benjamin Franklin Health
Science Academy
Boerum Hill School for
International Studies
Brooklyn Arbor Elementary School
Brooklyn High School of the Arts
International High School at
Prospect Heights
Liberty Avenue Middle School
The Maurice Sendak Community
Middle School of Philosophy
& Art
PS 14
PS 49
PS 55
PS 160
P168 @ PS/MS 20
PS 186
PS/IS 194
PS 204
PS 211
MS 228
PS 314
Academy of Public Relations
Arturo A. Schomburg Satellite
The Bronx School for Continuous
Bronx Lab School
Morris Academy for Collaborative
Studies High School
Mott Hall III
School of Performing Arts
PS 33
P94 @ PS 188
PS 124
PS 149
PS 150
Art and Design High School
Beekman Hill International School
Dr. Horan School
The High School of Fashion
School for Global Leaders
Washington Heights Academy
IS 5
PS 13
PS 23 @ Queen’s Children Center
PS 50
PS 51
PS 62
PS 63
PS 66
IS 77
PS 153
PS 185
PS 207
IS 208
PS 212
PS 229
MS 358
PS 993 @ Long Island High School
P993 @ PS 191
Bayside High School
Community Voices Middle School
Epic High School
Gateway Academy
Queens Explorers Elementary School
Queens School of Inquiry
The 30th Avenue School
PS 1
PS 6
PS 16
PS 42
PS 48
PS 68
IS 72

Fiscal Year 2020: Revenue and Expense Breakdown

Hover cursor over financial charts to reveal details.

Financials represent fiscal year 2020, spanning September 1, 2019 to August 31, 2020


  • NYC Department of Education: $965,898
  • Federal: $479,520
  • City, State: $713,844
  • Foundation, Corporate: $801,959
  • Individuals: $537,629
  • Special Events: $407,950
  • Other/in-kind: $464,404


  • Program Services: $4,008,371
  • Management and General: $338,687
  • Fundraising: $544,925


  • Total Revenue: $4,371,204
  • Total Expenses: $4,891,983

In the spring of 2020, ArtsConnection secured and expended a $700,967 loan through the federal Paycheck Protection Program. At the close of the fiscal year, the loan remains reflected as outstanding debt as the organization prepares the application to await lender approval that the conditions for loan forgiveness have been met.

Dance makes me feel proud of myself.

–2nd grader at PS 24k

Thank You!

Many thanks to all of our generous supporters. Due to space limitations, we cannot list all donor names here, but all of your contributions are deeply appreciated. (Donor List September 1, 2019 – August 31, 2020)

New York City Department of
Cultural Affairs
U.S. Department of Education
The New York Community Trust
Tracey and Robert Pruzan
Centerview Partners
NYC Department of Youth and
Community Development
The Pinkerton Foundation
The Emily Davie and Joseph
S. Kornfeld Foundation
The Smith Family (Iris, Michael,
Tara, Brian, Charley, Kaily
and Adam)
Soroban Capital Partners LP
Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Tsunami Foundation-Anson and
Debra Beard, Jr. and Family
Warner Media
Linda LeRoy Janklow
New York State Council on the Arts
Altman Foundation
The Ambassador Theatre Group
Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation
Robert Downes
J.P. Morgan Chase
Robert S. Kaplan
Lynne S. Katzmann and
Edward Goodell
David Monn
The Nederlander Organization, Inc.
Lisa and Richard Plepler
Bob and Eva Shaye/
Four Friends Foundation
The Shubert Organization, Inc.
Stephanie and Harry Wagner
The Barker Welfare Foundation
Bloomberg Philanthropies
Kekst CNC
Lambert Family Foundation
Warren G. Lichtenstein
Debra Peltz
Dara Perlbinder
Douglas E. Schoen
Patricia and Robert Carey
Jawad Haider
The Hyde and Watson Foundation
Joy of Giving Something
Jurate Kazickas and
Roger C. Altman
Marie-Josée and Henry R. Kravis
Josephine Magliocco
Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation
Amy Sung and Jeff Buick
Peggy and John Bader
Paul Chan and Don Toumey
Denise and David Chase
Linda and Adam Chinn
Citizens Committee of New York
City and West Side Community
Edward and Debra Cohen
Kenneth D. Cole and
Maria Cuomo Cole
Adam and Olivia Flatto
Amy and Brian France
Susan and Richard A. Friedman
Igor and Larisa Fuksman
Lee and Sergio J. Galvis
Karthryn and Alan Greenberg
Soledad and Bob Hurst
Jonathan A. Knee
Edward and Sandra Meyer
Foundation, Inc.
Sam Rosenblatt, Olmstead
Properties, Inc.
Mindy Schneider and
Dr. Michael Lesser
Sony Corporation of America
Jerry I. Speyer and
Katherine Farley
Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch
Barbara Walters
Louise Hartwell White
Benjamin and Susan Winter
Strauss Zelnick and
Wendy Belzberg
Francis and Cathy Aquila
The Milton and Sally Avery
Arts Foundation, Inc.
John R. Barber/Cohesive
Capital Management, LP
Jill and Darius Bikoff
Samantha Rudin Earls and
David Earls
The Jane Henson Foundation
The Isabel Foundation
Bonnie Lautenberg
Susan and Martin Lipton
Nazee and Joseph Moinian
Yvonne S. Quinn
Alexandra Sheldon
Dr. Robert C. and Tina Sohn
James and Jane Stern
Bridgitte Young and
Blake Young
Norman Alpert/The Alpert
Family Foundation
Ellen and Andrew Celli
Donald R. Crawshaw
David Fox/Kirkland and Ellis LLP
Joele Frank, Wilkinson
Brimmer Katcher
Bari and Neil Goldmacher
Roberta and David Harounian
Alan and Kim Hartman
Michael Hecht
Lena Kaplan
Cynthia and Anthony Kim
Christina Kringstein
Robin Lefcourt
Allison and Howard Lutnick
Robert Manocherian
Allison H. Mignone
Nancy and Morris W. Offit
Nora Ephron & Nicholas
Pileggi Foundation
Raether Family Charitable Trust
Rattner Family Foundation Inc.
RMS/EKK Family Charitable Fund
Marjorie and Jeffrey A. Rosen
Daryl and Steven Roth
Jill and Sanford Sirulnick
Susan and John Steinhardt
Family Foundation
Lynne Stoops
L. Jeff Walker
Anita and Byron Wien
Anne H. Bass
Benhar Office Interiors
Bob Buckholz and
Lizanne Fontaine
Ellie Cullman and Edgar M.
Cullman, Jr.
Kate and Andrew Davis
John and Deborah Evangelakos
Pamela Fiori/Snowflake Fund
Erin and Jonathan Frankel
Karen Freedman and
Roger Weisberg
Judy and David Gilberg
Judith Howard
The Richard R. Howe Foundation
Leslie Kaskel
Charles LeHuray-Jones
Marshall Wace North
America, LP
Daniel and Brooke Neidich
Lynn Nesbit
Joseph E. Neuhaus and
Cynthia A. Loomis
Karolann and Alex Patrazino
Debbie and Brett Rosen
Jane Safer
Ellin J. Saltzman
The Lawrence and Carol
Saper Foundation
Michael Sargent
Judith and Herbert Schlosser
Alan and Lisa Sinsheimer
Charles Thompson and Jean Mack
Teri and Barry Volpert Foundation
Suzanne Wunderman

In-Kind Donations

Tickets for our High 5 Tickets to the Arts Program provided by 71 arts & cultural partners. Space for Teen Programs workshops provided by the Museum of Art and Design and the New York Public Library. Subsidized studio space provided by the A.R.T./New York Creative Space Grant, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Support for Teens Programs provided by the Dedalus Foundation. Support for Pizza and a Movie provided by Charles Devigne/Lexington Pizza Parlour. Donation of ABCs of Art provided by David Matlin and J.P. Morgan Chase. Benefit auction artworks donated by the Martin Z. Margulies Foundation, Inc.

ArtsConnection is the recipient of public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council through the Cultural After-School Adventures initiative. ArtsConnection also receives discretionary funding from the City Council. Thanks to City Council Members Adrienne E. Adams, Joe Borelli, Andrew Cohen, Mark Gjonaj, Corey Johnson, Peter Koo, Brad Lander, Keith Powers, and Carlina Rivera.

Annual Report Featured Artists and School Partnerships

Laila Balahana, grade 11
Melanie Bhani, grade 10
Nya Eaddy, grade 12
Aida Fraser, grade 11
Daniel Garcia, grade 12
Ceci Hori, grade 11
Emily Hua, grade 11
Mia Lau , grade 11
Chu Yi Lei, grade 11
Sally Li, grade 12
Bao Lu, grade 11
Lucia Martell, grade 12
Daisy Nestor, grade 11
Dowon Park, grade 6

Jason Ramos, grade 8
Jinhang Ren, grade 7
Tyler Ripel, grade 9
Munir Mashratoon, grade 12
Farideh Sanandaji, grade 11
Imani Santos, grade 12
Minal Shaman, grade 9
Cyril Uy, grade 12
Wendy Vasquez , grade 12
Emily Yoonsmith, grade 7
PS 62q
PS 66q
PS 230k
PS 316q

Annual Report Featured Teaching Artists and Program Managers

Barthelemy Atsin
Laura Borgwardt
Sarah Dahnke
Andy Gaukel
Psacoya Guinn
Chris Ignacio

Edward Miller
Sara Jane Munford
Erin Orr
Sarah Provost
Justin Salud
Ron Sopyla
Shawn Williams

A special thank you to Joe Nanashe for editing all video content featured in this annual report.

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