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About the Columbus Area Arts Council

The Columbus Area Arts Council is a non-profit organization that enriches the community through arts projects and programs, including exhibitions, events, local artist development initiatives, and grants to artists and organizations. We provide resources and develop strategies that impact local culture, quality of life, and economy.

Through its exhibitions, CAAC showcases diverse art forms and artists from the local community and beyond. This provides a platform for artists to share their work and helps to build a sense of community around the arts.

The organization also offers community programs to engage the public in the arts and foster a greater appreciation for them. These programs include workshops, performances, and educational events open to all community members.

In addition, CAAC provides support and resources to local artists through various initiatives. These include professional development opportunities, such as mentorship programs, workshops, and access to grant funding.

CAAC enriches the cultural landscape of Columbus and surrounding areas. Our vibrant arts community attracts visitors, generates revenue for local businesses, and creates an attractive environment for potential residents and businesses. These factors significantly impact the region's cultural, social, and economic fabric.

CAAC is the Indiana Arts Commission (IAC) Regional Arts Partner for Region 9, representing Bartholomew, Dearborn, Decatur, Franklin, Jackson, Jennings, Ohio, Ripley, and Switzerland Counties.


To strengthen the community through arts and culture


To be the central resource for the arts by inspiring a creative life for all


Accessibility: Making the arts available to everyone regardless of their ability

Diversity: Embracing and enabling our diverse culture

Inclusion: Inviting everyone to participate and be better together

Collaboration: Engaging key partners in the process

Excellence: Delivering quality with integrity in everything we do

Strategic Objectives

Serve the Community

Cultivate a Creative Network

Foster and Develop Young Talent

Expand Quality of Place

Areas of Focus

Visual Art

Painting, Drawing, Photography, Sculpture, Public Art


Graphic Design, Textiles, Furniture, Architecture


Dance, Theatre, Music

Literary Art

Poetry, Spoken Word


Independent, Documentary

Cultural Equity Statement

With a vision “to be the central resource for the arts by inspiring a creative life for all,” CAAC is committed to providing everyone access to the arts. We are actively shaping a creative community that is inclusive, diverse and equitable, welcoming participation regardless of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, or religion.

Mission / Vision

Board of Directors

Julie Del Genio



Kelsey Finch

Vice President

Ross Kunkler



Amy McCormick


Mike Elwood

Past President

Ryan Doughty

Annie Johnson

Cheryl Miles-Vieth

Abhishek Satham

Sharon Sung Andrews


T. Kelly Wilson

CAAC Staff

Creative Team

Brooke Hawkins

Executive Director

Kim Wadholm

Operations Manager 

Anjali Naryaranan

Program Coordinator

Jan Banister

Interim Gallery Coordinator

Yoonji Jung

Graphic Designer

Kris Roberts

Special Projects Coordinator



In 1972 the Driftwood Valley Arts Council was formed. In 1989 the Driftwood Valley Arts Council and The Commons staffs were combined into the Columbus Area Arts Council under one board of directors.

The Columbus Area Arts Council is a leading arts agency in Bartholomew County, partnering with state, regional and local organizations to bring the arts to everyone. CAAC is a not-for-profit corporation supported by public and private donations, the City of Columbus, the Indiana Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Funding & Sponsorship


CAAC is a non-profit organization supported by private and public donations, the City of Columbus, the Indiana Arts Commission, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Cummins Inc. and Elwood Staffing are CAAC's investor-level sponsors in 2022.

Annual Reports

Staff / Team
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