Latest post in a series on city government
Deni Thurman-Eyer heads the Fine Arts Commission.
The Bethlehem Fine Arts Commission changed the process for appointments to the BFAC about 12 years ago. For many years, the Mayor would submit names to Council for approval without any input from the BFAC. This produced a Commission which had members who were not all engaged and, worse, acted in their own self-interest.
We recognized that we could improve that process. We revised and strengthened our Nominating procedures. We evaluated the needs of the Commission in terms of diversity, skills, and commitment to the arts, actively seeking nominees in that context. The Nominating Committee interviewed potential nominees before sending our recommendations to the Mayor to submit to Council.
This process has vested power in the BFAC to develop a strong, engaged, and productive 25-member Commission. This could be a model for improving the recruiting and retention of effective ABC boards.