January 28, 2016
Lilly Endowment gift gives boost to humanities’ future in Indiana

More humanities programs in more areas of the state and a major boost to Indiana Humanities’ ongoing sustainability. That’s what our recent gift from Lilly Endowment Inc. means to Indiana.

More humanities programs in more areas of the state and a major boost to Indiana Humanities’ ongoing sustainability. That’s what our recent gift from Lilly Endowment Inc. means to Indiana.

Needless to say, we’re excited and grateful. 

The $5 million Lilly Endowment gift transforms Indiana Humanities’ future, allowing us to invest in our infrastructure and programs so we can launch new initiatives and expand current programming, while also establishing an endowment to ensure that the humanities play a long-term role in shaping Indiana’s future.

This means:

  • more programs like ALL-IN and Food for Thought in more areas of the state
  • more opportunities for communities to connect through initiatives such as Next Indiana Bookshelf and Community Conversations
  • more big ideas like Next Indiana Campfires, our program combining literature with outdoor excursions in state parks, nature preserves and other wild places.
In short, the Lilly Endowment gift – part of a $100 million distribution to 14 arts and culture organizations across the state – fosters our long-term sustainability and strengthens our capacity to do more of what our partners call on us to do: provide grants and resources, initiate local and statewide humanities programming, and highlight the importance of the humanities.

To make sure we honor this gift with good stewardship, in the coming year we’ll focus on our core programs while also thoughtfully planning new programs for implementation starting in 2017. Key strategies driving this planning include:

  • Innovative programs reaching more communities and better serving rural areas
  • Investments in emerging humanities leaders
  • Increased grantmaking
  • Raising support for future projects
As we embark on this era of expanded programming and reach, we look forward to collaborating even more with partners like you. We see this not so much as a gift to Indiana Humanities, but more as a gift to the humanities in Indiana – and we want all of Indiana to enjoy in its benefits.

One final note: This gift also will allow us to make some much-needed needed repairs and upgrades to the historic Meredith Nicholson House that serves as our headquarters. While a minor part of the grant, this work provides a wonderful metaphor for how the Lilly Endowment gift serves the humanities in Indiana: It will have a tangible immediate impact while also ensuring long-term viability. For that, we are grateful.

Thanks for your continued support and we look forward to the year ahead.

Posted In: Press Releases, Spotlight

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