Arts Board Marks 50 Years of Service to the People of Wisconsin Looking Back, Imagining Forward


​August 2, 2023  ​​

Madison – Today the Wisconsin Arts Board celebrates its 50th Anniversary in service to the people of Wisconsin.  Former Governor Patrick Lucey signed the biennial budget bill creating the Arts Board on August 2, 1973. ​

We will commemorate this 50th Anniversary year and celebrate the Arts Board and its work with activities throughout the next twelve months.  The process of reconnecting with past board and staff members has already begun, evidenced by the 50th Anniversary logo mark which was designed by former board member Paul Meinke.  For more information about the Wisconsin Arts Board and its 50th Anniversary, please go to

“The arts enrich the lives of Wisconsinites across our state, helping us build connections and understanding of each other while supporting a critical part of our state's economy that has a more than $10 billion economic impact," said Governor Tony Evers. “The work of the Arts Board, its staff, and their many partners are vital to continuing to support the arts and humanities in Wisconsin. Congratulations to the Board on their 50 years of service—thank you for your good work strengthening our state and helping create vibrant communities for all." 

“On behalf of the Arts Board, I thank Governor Evers, his predecessors and the many legislators over the 50 years who have supported creativity and the creative economy in Wisconsin's communities through investment in the Arts Board's work," said Brian Kelsey, Chairperson of the Wisconsin Arts Board.  “I also extend my thanks to the National Endowment for the Arts for their partnership and investment in Wisconsin through the Arts Board.

“This milestone anniversary could not have been reached without the work of our outstanding current and former board members and staff," said George Tzougros, Arts Board Executive Director.  “We are all proud of the investment in and partnership with Wisconsin artists, tradition bearers, arts and community organizations, local and tribal governments, and educational institutions.  Each has shared expertise in creativity, culture, community, and commerce with the people of Wisconsin.  We look forward to continuing these investments and partnerships for years to come."

The Wisconsin Arts Board, a state agency, nurtures creativity, cultivates expression, promotes the arts, supports the arts in education, stimulates community and economic development, and serves as a resource for people of every culture and heritage.  Since 1973, the Arts Board has supported artists and art organizations with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information on the Wisconsin Arts Board and its 50th Anniversary, please visit

PDF version of this press release​ is available here. ​

# # #​