Daily Bulletin Article 7/12/09
by: Diana Sholley, Staff Writer
POMONA - Christy Johnson can't stop smiling.
That is except for the times she's breaking out in full-fledged laughter.
Johnson's giddiness started Thursday when she learned that the American Museum of Ceramic Art had been chosen to receive a $50,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
"We needed this badly," said Johnson, AMOCA director. "Our membership has remained the same, and we're grateful for that, and the donations have been coming, but the donation amounts have been smaller."
Nonprofit arts organizations are receiving grants to support the preservation of jobs that are threatened by declines in philanthropic and other support during the current economic downturn, according to the NEA Web site.
Johnson applied for the grant after Congress removed museums from the list of stimulus exclusions such as casinos, sports arenas and amusement parks. The grant is part of the $50 million federal economic stimulus recovery package.
In California, 99 nonprofit arts organizations are cumulatively receiving $4.45 million in funding, and $50,000 is the maximum a single organization can receive.
"We're young and stand-alone, being the only museum on the West Coast dedicated exclusively to ceramic art," Johnson said.
AMOCA will celebrate its fifth anniversary Sept. 11. Since its inception, the museum has received grants from the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, the James Irvine Foundation,