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The State of TACA in 2020

The State of TACA in 2020

Categories: Media & Blog

Terry D. Loftis and Tara Lewis

On January 1, 2020 while contemplating a year of unknown change, I was reminded of a toast Winston Churchill delivered on January 1, 1942, while traveling by train from Ottawa to Washington.

“Here’s to 1942, here’s to a year of toil, a year of struggle and peril, and a long step forward towards victory. May we all come through safe and with honor.”

1942 could be easily replaced with 2020 as we all have toiled, struggled, and dealt with peril. While most indeed took a long step forward, 2020 has dealt untold personal losses to so many. As we take stock of TACA’s challenges and highlights of the past year, we also would like to remember those who have lost friends and loved ones due to COVID-19 or otherwise.

It is with great humility that we say a heartfelt thank you to our generous supporters who aided TACA in having a record year. In March, many of us came together at the Fairmont Dallas for TACA’s Silver Cup Award luncheon honoring Matrice Ellis-Kirk and former Dallas Mayor, Mike Rawlings. The Silver Cup Award luncheon was the last major event in Dallas County before the complete shut down due to COVID-19. We were fortunate in that none of our guests were impacted by the virus.

The adverse impact of the pandemic on our family of beneficiaries was swift. To offer immediate financial support we launched our Emergency Arts Relief Fund, which provided unrestricted funding to nearly 100 cultural arts organizations across Dallas County. By April, we began laying down the foundation of the TACA Resiliency Initiative (TRI), a new program designed to provide funding and thought leadership to arts organizations committed to collaborating, fundraising, and resuming the delivery of the arts in a safe and creative fashion. The first distribution of TRI grants took place in November. Two additional cycles are planned for 2021.

Throughout all the ups and downs of this year, the outpouring of support has been nothing short of miraculous! We owe special recognition and thanks to The Eugene McDermott Foundation and the Donna Wilhelm Family Fund for major gifts to support our portfolio of beneficiaries and TACA’s own sustainability. These two institutions, along with a host of other generous foundations and individual donors, ensured that TACA answered the call of funding the arts across North Texas this year, helping us net a total of $1,200,000.00 in distributions to over 100 beneficiaries!

Together, the TACA staff and board have reimagined what resiliency means during the pandemic. As we approach 2021, we are committed to providing even greater support through funding, thought leadership and capacity building. Our sincere thanks to our family of beneficiaries, donors and the entire Dallas community for assisting TACA in our mission to ensure the sustainability of the arts.

Here’s to 2021 and to long steps forward.

Terry Loftis
President & Executive Director
TACA – The Arts Community Alliance

Tara Lewis
Chair, Board of Directors
TACA – The Arts Community Alliance