Louisiana Division of the Arts Grant Panelists
What is a Panelist?
To maintain an evaluation of grant applications founded on knowledge and best practices, the Division of the Arts is committed to a system of peer panel review in evaluating grant proposals. A grant panel is comprised of arts professionals from within Louisiana and across the country. We refer to our peer reviewers as "panelists."
Who Can Be a Panelist?
The Division seeks panelists with qualifications specific to a panel. A panelist may meet some but not necessarily all of the following qualifications:
- Professional experience as an artist or nonprofit arts administrator, in an arts-based commercial business, or in arts and cultural policy or cultural economy development
- Knowledge of standards and best practices in management, governance and operations
- Knowledge in an artistic discipline or field (dance, music, theatre, visual arts and crafts, literature, media, design, folklife, arts-in-education, presenting and touring, etc.)
- Awareness of discipline and industry trends and issues
The Division of the Arts recruits panelists and accepts resumes from interested individuals throughout the year.
How is a Panelist Selected?
During each grants cycle, the Division of the Arts recommends a pool of panelists to the Louisiana State Arts Council based on the following criteria:
- Demonstration of necessary expertise proposed in grant applications for review
- Judicious demonstration of gender, diverse cultures, and special populations of the state
- Representation of regional and statewide areas, although no community is guaranteed representation on a panel
Once executive staff and the Louisiana State Arts Council have approved potential candidates to serve on the panel, these individuals are then invited to review applications.
What are a Panelist's Responsibilities?
Once a panelist confirms his/her participation, grant applications and score sheets will be sent to the panelists for review and evaluation. Evaluation is based on the established criteria for a given grant category. In evaluating an applicant's grant proposal, panelists must:
- Be familiar with Division of the Arts philosophies and priorities and the grant program and category purpose, goals and criteria.
- Read and become familiar with all grant proposals, support materials, and samples of work.
- Review the application at face value; in other words, do not assume or presume information not found in the grant application.
- Record comments according to the strengths and weaknesses of the proposals in light of the grant category and evaluation criteria. Comments or opinions not relevant to the specific application or to the evaluation criteria are discouraged.
- Score each application, as presented, according to the grant program purpose, goals and criteria.
Panelists should also keep in mind the following when agreeing to serve as a panelist:
Want to be a Panelist?
- Keep applicant information and panel proceedings confidential, referring any applicants to the Division of the Arts. All panelists are required to sign a confidentiality agreement.
- Disclose any direct, indirect or apparent conflict of interest.
- Any outside knowledge or information deemed important to an application, but not related to the evaluation criteria should be discussed with Division staff prior to the panel.
- Maintain an attitude of respectfulness during a panel meeting even when there is disagreement or discomfort.
If you are interested in being a panelist, please contact Kelly Pepper your resume to the Division of the Arts for consideration. In addition to Division of the Arts grant programs, panelists are also needed to review Decentralized Arts Funding (DAF) Program grant proposals. Should you also be interested in reviewing proposals that involve activities closer to home, please contact your DAF representative and express your interest.