New Co-Chairs and a New Website

Shot from the back of the performance space, a group of four musicians stand on the stage in a row taking their final bow. They are surrounded by their instruments on a deep blue lit stage and framed with red curtains. The audience stands and claps.
Dayramir Gonzalez & Habana entrance take a bow on stage at Flushing Town Hall (Flushing, NY). Flushing Town Hall is a member of Mid Atlantic Arts’ Jazz Touring Network. Credit: Shawn Choi, courtsey of Mid Atlantic Arts.

Torrie Allen of Arts Midwest and Todd Stein of Mid-America Arts Alliance to lead the US RAO Collective.

Today, the United States Regional Arts Organizations (USRAOs) announced two new co-chairs at the helm of this collective of six non-profit organizations that work to strengthen and support arts, culture, and creativity across America. On the heels of this news, an updated website for the USRAOs is live at

A headshot of Torrie Allen
Left: Todd Stein, photo by Sabrina Staires
Right: Torrie Allen

About the US RAOs

The first Regional Arts Organization, Mid-America Arts Alliance, was founded in 1972, fifty years ago. Ever since, this group of six organizations has worked to serve all the states and jurisdictions of the United States. The USRAOs (Arts Midwest, Mid Atlantic Arts, Mid-America Arts Alliance, New England Foundation for the Arts, South Arts, and WESTAF) have a deep connection to their regions, knowledge of their arts and culture ecosystems and organizations, and longstanding partnerships with state arts agencies, the National Endowment for the Arts, and other public and private funders, service organizations, and agencies. In fiscal year 2021, the USRAOs collectively invested over $28.3 million dollars across the United States and Jurisdictions through over 3,000 grants that reached over 1,600 communities.

Throughout their histories, each USRAO has developed areas of expertise to complement one another, and in the past five years, have dove into creative conversations about how to collaborate and work together in even deeper ways. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the collective worked with the Mellon Foundation to distribute $10 million across the nation to assist historically underserved organizations with stability, relief, and recovery through the United States Regional Arts Resilience Fund. Shortly after this collective effort, Mackenzie Scott and Dan Jewett gave generous donations to each USRAO so that work supporting arts, creativity, and community could be amplified across the nation.

To lead future collaborations between the USRAOs, the six organizations have selected Torrie Allen, President and CEO of Arts Midwest, and Todd Stein, President and CEO of Mid-America Arts Alliance, to co-chair the collective. In leading the United States Regional Arts Organizations together, Allen and Stein will work toward the collective’s shared goals of

  • Supporting BIPOC Organizations and Leaders
  • Supporting Individual Artists
  • Modeling Togetherness
  • Advocacy

“As the US Regional Arts Organizations have discussed the ways in which we could benefit the nation, we’ve considered the missions of each organization and how our work is strategically aligned. It is my honor to Co-Chair with Torrie as we represent the US RAOs across the country and focus our collective efforts on the four shared goals in the upcoming years.”

Todd Stein, President and CEO of Mid-America Arts Alliance.

“The US Regional Arts Organizations are an essential and impactful part of our nation’s creative ecosystem. I’m thrilled to explore new opportunities for alignment, collaboration, and togetherness as we continue to support art, creativity, and community across America.”

Torrie Allen, President and CEO of Arts Midwest. 

Allen and Stein’s tenure as co-chairs kicks off with the launch of a refreshed website for the USRAO collective, featuring an interactive map of each organization’s geography, a database of select national grant opportunities offered by each USRAO, and evocative imagery that captures the passion, depth, and diversity of art and creativity across America.

Two older light-skinned adults with short hair sit at a table together. One of the people is wearing a light purple shirt with curly short white hair and is holding a paper cut out of a hand up to their own hand and smiling.
Mini art lesson at Silver Threads Assisted Living in Gregory, South Dakota. Photo by Prairie Feather Photography. Courtesy of Gregory Horizons and Arts Midwest.