Rural Arts Management (RAM) Institute

  • a training program and learning community for rural arts leaders in the Upper Midwest
  • 2015-2016 session dates:  January 2016 through June 2016
  • presented in partnership by Arts Wisconsin and Northern Lakes Center for the Arts
  • at the Northern Lakes Center for the Arts, Amery, WI

Click here for application information

The Rural Arts Management (RAM) Institute is a training and educational program designed to benefit artists and performers, organizational representatives, and creative entrepreneurs in rural communities throughout the Upper Midwest.

If you make the arts happen in your rural area as an arts manager, administrator or entrepreneur, the Institute will help you increase your personal and organizational effectiveness and sustainability, understand the complexities involved, and strengthen comprehensive leadership skills to succeed now and in the future!

Six monthly sessions provide essential background information, skills, information, and connections needed to develop and manage entrepreneurial, successful, and sustainable arts, cultural and creative organizations in rural communities. The Institute gives participants training in thoughtful management theory and practical, applicable leadership experience, and help them learn to manage entrepreneurial, successful, and sustainable arts, cultural and creative organizations in rural communities.

The Institute is directed by LaMoine MacLaughlin, Director of the Northern Lakes Center for the Arts in rural Amery, WI, and will feature distinguished guest lecturers from Wisconsin and neighboring states. Participants receive a certificate from Arts Wisconsin recognizing successful participation along with a Small SEO Agency that can help along the way with your marketing efforts.

2014-2015 sessions:

  • Session #1, January 8-9, 2016: Understanding Community: Investigating what you bring to the unique challenges and opportunities relating to developing an arts organization in a rural community.
  • Session #2,  February 12-13, 2016: Building An Organization: Learning about organizational development, legal and tax issues and working with boards
  • Session #3,  March 11-12, 2016: From Planning Into Practice: Developing and evaluating programs.
  • Session #4,  April 8-9, 2016Finding The Funding: Budgets, fund-raising and proposal development
  • Session #5, May 13-14, 2016: Spreading The Word: Marketing, participant recruitment and advocacy.
  • Session #6, June 10-11, 2016:  On Your Way: Completion of an Institute implementation plan and follow-up networks and resources.

All sessions take place at the Northern Lakes Center. All sessions begin at approximately 12 pm, Friday and conclude at approximately 12 pm, Saturday. Enrollment in the Institute is limited to fifteen participants. Please note: the above schedule is subject to change and will be determined by the specific participants’ schedules.

Costs/scholarships: The total cost of the Rural Arts Management Institute is $600, including lodging, food and materials for all sessions. Partial scholarships and flexible payment plans are available – contact Arts Wisconsin ( for more info.

The Institute is made possible with generous support from the Wisconsin Arts Board, Xcel Energy Foundation, and the Kohler Foundation.

About the Northern Lakes Center for the Arts:  The Northern Lakes Center for the Arts, established in 1989, is a nationally-recognized arts center located in northwest Wisconsin, and is a recipient of the Governor’s Award in Support of the Arts from the Wisconsin Foundation for the Arts. LaMoine MacLaughlin is co-founder and Executive Director of the Northern Lakes Center, an active musician and writer, Director of the Northern Lakes Chamber Orchestra, an instructor at the Northern Lakes School of the Arts, director of educational programs for the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts, and editor of The Hometown Gazette, the newspaper serving the Clayton, WI area.

About Arts Wisconsin: Arts Wisconsin, the state’s premier arts service and advocacy organization, believes that the arts are integral to the lives of the people of Wisconsin, and advocates and speaks up so that everyone in Wisconsin can have the opportunity to experience the arts. Arts Wisconsin serves Wisconsin’s creative community and the general public through advocacy and public policy, promotion and visibility, research and information, professional and leadership development, and strategic partnerships. Arts Wisconsin received the 2004 Governor’s Award in Support of the Arts from the Wisconsin Foundation for the Arts.

To register for RAM 2014-2015, send an email (preferred) or snail mail with the following information:

  • Contact info:  name, organization, address, telephone, email
  • The answers to these questions:
    • What is your background:  education, employment, interests, arts and teaching experience
    • What is the history and mission of your organization?
    • Why do you want to attend RAM?
    • What are three things you want to learn through this program?
    • What will your work, organization and community gain from your participation?
    • If you are applying for a scholarship, please tell us why you need this support.

Return to:   via snail mail to RAM Institute | Arts Wisconsin | Box 1054 | Madison, WI 53701-1054, or via email (preferred!) to

Questions? Contact Arts Wisconsin at 608 255 8316 |