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Senators Brophy McGee and Worsley Named Arts Champions

Senators Kate Brophy McGee and Bob Worsley have been named 2017 Arts Champions by the Arizona Citizens for the Arts, a 35-year-old organization that acts on behalf of the arts and culture sector in Arizona. The Senators, both long standing advocates for the arts, were honored for their support in a $1.5 million appropriation to the Arizona Commission on the Arts, which grants funds to local Arizona communities and cities to be used to support various nonprofit art and cultural organizations.

“Senator Worsley understands how the arts have contributed to revitalizing downtown Mesa and making the whole city more livable for its residents. He’s also a true believer in the importance of arts in the education of our young people. For these reasons, he’s become a key leader in bringing the arts to all Arizonans,” said executive director of Arizona Citizens for the Arts, Catherine “Rusty” Foley, who praised both Senators for their personal appreciations of the arts and as being ongoing advocates for arts education.

“The arts have been important personally to Senator Brophy McGee and her family. She also represents a district that is home to more arts supporters than any other district in the state. Arts are a priority in District 28, and Senator Brophy McGee has energetically supported her constituents.”

LD 25 in Mesa has been allocated $17,500 for programs such as the Desert Sounds Performing Arts, East Valley Children's Theatre and the Sonoran Desert Chorale. Senator Worsley explained how he believes the arts will positively impact local and global societies in the future.

"Old businesses and government agencies will learn to modernize and adapt based on the artistic spaces we create in Arizona, and entrepreneurs will congregate and receive energy from the artists around us. Artists force us to see and feel the world differently, encourage us to be more open minded and charitable, and help us become comfortable around people we might not normally associate with. I am happy that Arizona joins most other national, state and local governments in recognizing the importance of providing modest financial assistance to aspiring arts organizations to assure their future success, and in turn, will also assure ours."

LD 28, covering areas of Paradise Valley, Phoenix and Scottsdale, has been awarded $22,500. Senator Brophy McGee expressed her gratitude and explained why she believes support for the arts is so critical economically.

"District 28 is home to many arts patrons and advocates, and they understand that a vibrant arts and culture scene is very important in attracting and retaining businesses. As a former school board president, I’ve seen firsthand the value of an arts education for students with varied learning needs. I am deeply honored by this award."

All of the 2017 Arts Champions will be recognized at an annual reception and at public events and art venues in their districts in the fall.

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