Workshops. Lectures. Conference Panels. Interviews. Honors. Fundraisers.

  • Thu
    NAS Summit, Minneapolis, MN

    National Arts Strategies convened 50 arts & culture leaders from across their alumni networks to work together to explore how biases affect organizational culture, how to lead through adversity to create lasting change, and ways to implement racial equity principles in arts and culture organizations.

    Alison was pleased to be invited to facilitate the dialogue for advancing racial equity in arts and culture organizations.

  • Sat
    Arts Administrators of Color-DMV Annual Convening: Baltimore, MD

    Arts Administrators of Color-DMV (AAC-DMV) is committed to empowering artists and arts administrators in the Washington, DC metropolitan area by advocating for access, diversity, inclusion, and equity in the arts. On September 29, 2018, AAC-DMV will host is annual convening bringing together artists and arts professionals across the Washington, DC metropolitan area. Alison McNeil will serve on a panel about entrepreneurship in the arts. The convening will be held in Baltimore, MD at The Motor House.

  • Tue
    Florida State University, Department of Art Education, Tallahassee, FL

    Alison McNeil was invited to deliver a guest lecture to Dr. Antonio Cuyler's graduate level Leading the Arts Organization class. His students were expected to design their own arts organization as a part of their coursework. To complement their preparation for this assignment, Alison was invited to reflect on her experiences and lessons learned as an entrepreneur in the arts and culture sector. She offered insights and sparked dialogue informed by her entrepreneurial journey, including what led her to launch an arts service organization, an arts consulting firm and a philanthropic fund that invests in artists.

  • Mon
    1:00 pmArts Management Institute: Washington, DC

    Words Beats and Life is a DC based nonprofit organization that creates arts based educational experiences rooted in hip hop that equips youth, arts managers, teaching artists and scholars to move from theory to practice. In June 2018, they launched the inaugural Arts Management Institute. Fifteen young people enrolled in Washington, DC's Summer Youth Employment Program will participate in this Institute. The Institute will include lectures, guest speakers, creative community tours, arts workshops and hands on management skill training for all participants. Alison has been invited to design and facilitate a workshop on program evaluation. What an incredible opportunity for the young people of DC!

  • Wed
    1:30 pmAssociation of Performing Arts Service Organizations Conference - Austin, TX

    This session will explore the following questions: (1) How does an arts service organization utilize a “systems-change” mindset when evaluating their offerings? (2) What are the challenges in translating the core values of a project to the core values of an organization? (3) What are the barriers in thinking about systemic change?

    During this session, the panelists will reflect on their experiences unpacking the aforementioned questions through a project meant to accurately represent the operations of under-resourced and under-represented arts & culture organizations.

    • Katie Ingersoll, Education Manager, DataArts
    • Michelle Higgins, Community Engagement Manager, DataArts
    • Alison McNeil, Co-Founder & Partner, Third Eye Cultural Collaborative
  • Wed
    6:30 pmIA&A at Hillyer (formerly Hillyer Art Space): Washington, DC


    ArtTable was founded in 1980 by a group of professional women in the visual arts to foster greater support, recognition, and opportunities among their peers.

    Join ArtTable DC for the first program in a series of professional development programs this Spring! For details about how to RSVP click here.

    Have you considered leaving your organization to try your hand at consulting? Does the appeal of flexible hours and choice of projects sound appealing? What are the risks with striking out on one's own? What are the benefits? This panel brings together four women who have successfully transitioned into consulting and freelance work, each with different reasons and trajectories. One panelist carefully planned the transition for several years (Alison's story), another turned to consulting suddenly when full-time employment ended. One panelist will talk about consulting as a gradual step towards retirement, and another will talk about why she returned to an organization after years as a freelancer. If you are considering striking out on your own, you won't want to miss this event!


    • Alison McNeil, Founder and Chief Creative Officer, McNeil Creative Enterprises
    • Carlyn Madden, Principal, Carlyn Madden Consulting Services
    • Edith Graves, Director of Communications, Anthony Wilder Design/Build and Studio E Partners
    • Marsha Semmel, Principal, Marsha Semmel Consulting, formerly Director, Institute of Museum and Library Services


    • Claire Huschle, Director, Scaffold
  • Thu
    8:00 amInternational Association of Blacks in Dance Conference: Los Angeles, CA


    The International Association of Blacks in Dance  (IABD) is part of the Comprehensive Organizational Health Initiative (COHI) funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. COHI builds organizational resiliency within the national arts ecosystem by broadening access to resources in underserved regions, creating more equitable systems of support for artists and cultural organizations, and strengthening community participation. While participating in COHI, IABD launched an effort to document the stories of blacks in dance as informed by a representative sample of IABD member organizations in a report called The Black Report: The State of the Union for Blacks in Dance.  MCE is a contributor to this report.

    IABD and MCE presented the preliminary results from The Black Report  during the 2018 IABD conference in Los Angeles, CA.