Sarah has written before about the scene here in Little Rock. She has been working on it and in it for many years. Anyone within earshot has heard her praise its richness of talent and bemoan its dearth of support. She says, "We are a lucky city - to have such remarkable musicians and artists and creators working and living here. And overall, we completely take this for granted."
When asked how she got to be involved with Think Big Little Rock, she said:
"When I learned that the Chamber had made Arts and Culture the focus of one of the task forces, I was immediately hopeful that, perhaps finally, some progress could be made to increase the support, the recognition, and the bolstering of our creative community. The thoughtful and interesting people in our task force have worked for months to accurately identify ways in which Little Rock could improve access to our artistic resources, better support our artistic residents, and do more to make the city a place both artists and patrons enjoy. I am deeply proud of the ideas that have been proposed and look forward to sharing them with you all. In the meantime, hear some music, see some art, enjoy a festival, eat out for dinner, take in a play, and hug your local creatives. They need you."
Meet Kody Robinson! He's one of the most active members of the economic development task force and brings passion, intellect and drive to our project.
When asked why Kody participates in Think Big Little Rock, he said:
"Little Rock can be a hub for young professionals across the country. We have amazing companies, startups, and investors just waiting to help the next group of young professionals coming to the Natural State. Us here in the Economic Development group are helping with anything from ideas to implementation. Little Rock has potential to be the best. We see that and we will make it happen.”
Meet Isis Pettway, member of the Education Task Force!
"Think Big Little Rock is a great initiative for my generation because we are full of ideas to help the city progress and needed a way for them to be heard, worked on, and eventually executed into action. In order to get things going you have to be in the room where things are happening and decisions are being made because change happens from the inside out. I’m glad to be a part of this initiative as we do our part to move the city of Little Rock onward and upward!”
Meet Dazzmin K. Murry, member of the Arts and Culture Task Force.
As an independent musician, she knows the value of the consumer-artist relationship, and is dedicated to helping bridge the gap between the two, which is why she thought it imperative that she might join the Arts & Culture Task Force.
When asked why she is a part of Think Big Little Rock, Dazz said, "Think Big Little Rock gives a voice to the artist and allows open communication, which will in turn guarantee that the culture and talents of Little Rock flourishes."
This past month at our plenary session, we held a large forum that brought together all task forces to discuss the goals, research and insights gained in the first phase (Research and Fact Find) of our initiative.
Huge thanks to Little Rock Mayor, Mark Stodola, for sharing his big ideas and speaking to our group of young professionals about future projects and vision for the Little Rock metro. Also, thanks go to the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, Create Little Rock, Fifty for the Future, and UALR's Institute for Economic Advancement for helping us plan and develop our strategies for this presentation.
Our next phase (Develop Strategies and Solutions) begins the shaping of actionable steps that will establish a path to completion for these plans and strategies. Be on the look out for a formal presentation later in the year with our fully vetted strategies for Arts & Culture, Diversity, Economic Development, Education, Public Safety, and Transportation & Environment.