Chandler Economic Prosperity from Arts and Culture Study Revealed

March 5, 2024
Chandler Center for the Arts front exterior at night

CHANDLER, Ariz. – The arts mean business in Chandler and the city’s first-time participation in a national study quantifies the impact the arts have on the local economy. The Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 (AEP6) survey, conducted by Americans for the Arts and led locally by Chandler Center for the Arts, found the nonprofit arts and culture sector in Chandler generated $12.1 million in economic activity - $4.7 million in spending by arts and culture organizations and an additional $7.3 million in event-related expenditures by their audiences. In 2022, that economic activity supported 194 jobs, provided $8.2 million in personal income to residents, and generated $2.4 million in tax revenue to local, state and federal governments.

The AEP6 study analyzed the economic and social impact of the nonprofit arts and culture industry in 394 communities across all 50 states, including the District of Columbia. The study is conducted approximately every five years, providing data that supports the fact that arts organizations are businesses that make communities more desirable places to life and work, drive local commerce, support jobs and generate government revenue.

The community can learn more about the findings and implications for Chandler by attending a panel discussion on April 22 from 4-6 p.m. at Chandler Center for the Arts. Randy Cohen, Vice President of Research at Americans for the Arts and author of Arts & Economic Prosperity: The Economic Impact of Nonprofit Arts Organizations and their Audiences, will join Mitch Menchaca, Executive Director of City of Phoenix Office of Arts + Culture, to discuss the findings and what deeper investments in arts and culture could mean for Chandler looking forward. The panel will be moderated by Chandler Center for the Arts General Manager, Michelle Mac Lennan. Admission is free; RSVPs are encouraged.

Additional findings show arts and culture drives local commerce with Chandler arts attendees spending $40.28 per person per event, beyond the cost of admission, such as, dining before or after events, transportation and childcare. Of those surveyed, 15.5% of attendees traveled from outside Maricopa County and spent an average of $59.86. The arts strengthens visitor economy and tourism with 72.2% of non-local attendees reporting that the primary purpose of their visit was specifically to attend the performance, event, exhibit, venue, or facility where they were surveyed.

Results also solidified that arts and culture organizations contribute to community pride with 82.4% of attendees who agreed the activity or venue where they were surveyed “inspired a sense of pride in the neighborhood or community.” And, 70.4% agreed the venue where they were surveyed was “an important pillar” within their community.

Data collection included surveys of arts and culture event attendees and nonprofit arts and culture organizations, conducted July 2022 to April 2023 throughout the City of Chandler. To ensure equity and inclusion was a critical part of the data methodology, 34% of collected surveys were at events organized by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) and ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab, Native American) organizations.

For more information on the study, to read the full report, use the nonprofit economic calculator and to RSVP for events related to the Chandler study, visit Chandler Center for the Arts

About Randy Cohen
Randy Cohen is Vice President of Research at Americans for the Arts—the national advocacy organization for the arts—where he has been empowering arts advocates since 1991. He publishes Americans Speak Out About the Arts, a national public opinion study about the arts as well as the two premier economic studies of the arts—Arts & Economic Prosperity, the national economic impact study of nonprofit arts organizations and their audiences; and Creative Industries, a mapping study of the nation’s 675,000 arts businesses and their employees. His 10 Reasons to Support the Arts blog received the Gold Award from the Association of Media & Publishing—their top honor for best blog post of the year. Randy led the development of the National Arts Policy Roundtable, an annual convening of leaders who focus on the advancement of American culture—launched in partnership with Robert Redford and the Sundance Institute. A sought-after speaker, Randy has given speeches in all 50 states, and regularly appears in the news media—including the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and on C-SPAN, CNN, CNBC, and NPR.

About Mitch Menchaca
Mitch Menchaca (he/him) is Executive Director for the City of Phoenix Office of Arts + Culture. An Arizona native, he relocated from Phoenix to Washington, D.C., in 2009 to lead the Local Arts Advancement Department at Americans for the Arts, where he guided a team of professionals serving and advancing the nation’s 5,000 local arts agencies. Before 2009, he served as the senior director of grants and programs at the Arizona Commission on the Arts, where he administered an extensive portfolio of grants from all artistic disciplines, budget sizes, and regions of the state. Mitch has also had leadership and programmatic roles at Arizona Humanities, the Association of California Symphony Orchestras, and Chorus America. He is the past chairman of The Association of American Cultures, served on the board of directors for DataArts (formerly the Cultural Data Project), and has been a frequent ​panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts. Mitch currently serves on the board of directors for Latinos LEAD in Los Angeles, is a member of the Phoenix Bioscience Core Arts Committee, is on the board of directors for the Arizona Community Foundation, serves on the national board of the League of American Orchestras, and serves as the Governor appointed arts and culture chair for the Arizona Mexico Commission. He studied theater at Central Arizona College, earned a Bachelor of Liberal Studies and a Master​ of Nonprofit Leadership and Management at Arizona State University, and completed a festival and event management certificate at the University of Minnesota.

Media contacts:
Laura Schairer, Audience Magnets

Toni Smith
City of Chandler, Marketing and Communications Manager