Regional Cultural Assessment Consultant Selected

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Monday, October 31, 2016

Drake University President Marty Martin and Bravo Greater Des Moines announced today that Creative Community Builders will serve as the consultant to support the Regional Cultural Assessment launched in August.  

The Regional Cultural Assessment is an effort funded by Bravo and led by an independent steering committee aimed at identifying and prioritizing opportunities to enhance and leverage the arts as an essential driver of quality of life and economic development in central Iowa. Creative Community Builders was selected from a pool of applicants that included national and local planning and development firms.

 Creative Community Builders (CCB), based in the Midwest and working nationally, has led cultural planning efforts in communities across the U.S. including Lawrence, Kan.; Marquette, Mich.; and San Jose, Calif. The team has extensive experience spearheading national research and creative sector economic development and planning.

“Creative Community Builders is thrilled to work with the project Steering Committee and the community on central Iowa’s Regional Cultural Assessment,” said Tom Borrup, Ph.D., Principal, Creative Community Builders. “While we bring knowledge and experience from many similar efforts, we know that every place, circumstance, and set of aspirations requires unique approaches and fresh strategic thinking. We look forward to learning with and from greater Des Moines to create a plan that meets the goals of this project.”

“Creative Community Builders has a proven track record in community cultural planning and will bring tremendous expertise and leadership to the cultural assessment work,” said President Martin, chair of the Assessment steering committee. “Their experience combined with the knowledge and passion of the steering committee and the community for arts and culture strongly positions this work for success.”

The Regional Cultural Assessment, including opportunities for community input, will be conducted throughout 2016 and early 2017 with priorities identified in mid-2017. More information about the project, steering committee, timelines and specific community engagement opportunities can be found at as details become available.



Bravo Greater Des Moines works to strengthen arts, culture and heritage organizations across central Iowa using an accountable, regional and collaborative model to provide funding and support. Using funds contributed by local government partners, Bravo invests in arts, culture and heritage organizations that contribute to and enhance the quality of life in Greater Des Moines for residents and visitors. 


Drake University is a midsize, private university in Des Moines, Iowa, enrolling more than 3,300 undergraduate and 1,700 graduate students from 40 states and approximately 40 countries. Students choose from over 70 majors, minors, and concentrations and 20 graduate degrees offered through six colleges and schools. Drake students, faculty, and staff take advantage of the wealth of cultural, recreational, and business opportunities found in Iowa's capital city. In return, Drake enriches the city through its own cultural offerings, considerable economic impact, and many service-learning endeavors, which channel the talent and energy of the Drake students toward meeting the needs of the community.