Cuyahoga Arts & Culture Swears in Newest Trustee - COSE Arts Network Leader Tapped for Five-Member Board

CLEVELAND (April 13, 2010) – Matthew Charboneau of Lakewood has been named to the board of trustees of Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. A graduate of Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and a professional musician for the past fifteen years—he plays the double bass and electric bass—Charboneau currently leads the Council of Smaller Enterprise’s (COSE) Arts Network, a resource for professionals from Northeast Ohio’s creative industries. Charboneau was sworn in at yesterday afternoon’s annual meeting of the Cuyahoga Arts & Culture board. His term extends through March 2013.

Steven A. Minter, president of the five-member Cuyahoga Arts & Culture board welcomed Charboneau’s appointment, which was made by the Board of Cuyahoga County Commissioners. Principle criteria for considered candidates were expertise in arts and culture; civic, educational, and business leadership with broad arts and culture knowledge; gender and racial diversity; and knowledge of the public sector.

As COSE’s point person for the region’s arts and cultural industries—designers, musicians, gallery owners, photographers, performers, and artists representing a wide range of disciplines and media—Charboneau’s effectiveness at bridging the sometimes disparate worlds of business and the arts is widely respected. Among the successful initiatives the COSE Network coordinates are the annual Arts Business and Innovation Awards, which recognize local individuals and organizations whose navigation of the often-complex intersection between the arts and business communities is exemplary.

According to Minter, “Matthew’s impressive combination of expertise and experience make him an ideal fit for the CAC board. Here we have a young man trained at one of the nation’s preeminent conservatories, who is not only an accomplished musician and a gifted performer, but who is also an innovative arts administrator with a Master of Nonprofit Organizations (MNO) degree from Case Western Reserve University. What’s more, he is deeply acquainted with this community, its resources, and the individuals committed to the sustained growth of Cuyahoga County’s creative sector. For all of these reasons, I am confident Matthew will be an active, contributing member of the board from day one—and an excellent advocate for the diverse stakeholders he will represent.”

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture Executive Director Karen Gahl-Mills echoed Minter’s enthusiasm, citing Charboneau’s record of building relationships that have brought new accessibility—and new relevance—to the region’s arts and cultural gems. “Matthew’s professional record, including his time as associate director of Roots of American Music (a nonprofit organization that delivers arts-based assembly and residency programs to underserved schools throughout Northeast Ohio) assures me that he understands and values the public mission of Cuyahoga Arts & Culture and that he will be a great partner in the fulfillment of that mission.”

Charboneau’s appointment to the board was applauded by Tom Schorgl, president and CEO of the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture (CPAC), who said, “Matt will serve as a key link between the business community and the arts and cultural community as a CAC trustee. Given the sizable role that this community’s arts and cultural sector plays in the larger local economy, the importance—and the potential—of this link is extraordinary.”

The vacancy that Charboneau has been tapped to fill is a result of the retirement of trustee David Bergholz, who, along with Minter, became one of two original members of the CAC board in April 2007. Thanking him for three years of dedicated board service, Minter acknowledged the significance of Bergholz’s role and the lasting effect it would have on an organization that in only three years, has become one of the nation’s largest sources of local public support for the arts. “The $48 million in operating support and project support grants CAC has made to date are an investment whose dividends are paid in communities throughout Cuyahoga County. CAC’s impact on neighborhoods, on organizations and institutions of all sizes, on this region’s effectiveness in attracting tourist dollars, and on countless numbers of vital outcomes is only beginning to be known. Dave’s sensitivity to this community, its needs, and its potential is one of many reasons his mark on Cuyahoga Arts & Culture has been so very significant—and so very meaningful.”

Monday’s meeting also included the selection of board officers for the coming year. Steven Minter was reelected as the trustees’ president with Christopher Coburn, who was reappointed to a second board term, to serve as vice president, and Vickie Eaton Johnson to serve as the secretary.

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture makes grants using public funds to support the arts and cultural assets that enrich Cuyahoga County and the lives of its citizens. Since 2007, CAC grants have delivered in excess of $48 million to more than one hundred Cuyahoga County organizations and programs, helping to secure CAC’s place among the nation’s largest sources of local public support for the arts. Detailed information on CAC grantmaking including the group’s 2009 Report to the Community is available online at

April 13, 2010 Press Release (PDF)