Business Volunteers for the Arts®


In pro bono consulting delivered by Business Volunteers for the Arts between 2009 and 2023; over 33,000 hours of service.

Business Volunteers for the Arts® (BVA) recruits skilled Chicagoans, trains them in nonprofit practice, and matches them with nonprofit 501(c)3 arts, cultural, and creative organizations in need of business, management and/or operational assistance.

Our BVA consultants are thoroughly vetted, highly-qualified individuals who have subject-matter expertise and a demonstrated commitment to the arts.

6 months, 4 volunteers, 235 hours, $35K+ Value

Represents what our volunteers put in to developing Forward Momentum Chicago’s Strategic Plan, but it only cost them $450.

“A&BC paired us with amazing Business Volunteers for the Arts consultants who worked hard to help us develop our new 3 year strategic plan that will take us into our 10th year.” – Forward Momentum Chicago


Our BVA consultants work in groups of 2-5 and lend their abilities in a variety of business-related project areas, including:

  • Strategic Planning
  • Communications & Marketing
  • Income Generation
  • Human Resources
  • Business & Financial Planning
  • Data Analysis
  • Board Structure & Operations
  • Retreat Facilitations

Time commitment is dependent on the nature of the project, with most projects lasting between 2-6 months. Arts Partners and consultants agree on an anticipated completion date–as well as outcome–prior to the project start.

BVA Projects are recommended to nonprofits that are navigating a specific challenge or organizational transition in any of the areas listed above.

If you are looking for professional development workshops in the areas of marketing, communications, research, grant writing, or project management, our Learning Labs might be a better option. If you are seeking board governance training, we encourage you to explore On BOARD®.

If you have doubts about whether or not your organization might benefit from participating in the BVA program, you can reach out to Executive Director Kristin Larsen, at or schedule a meeting with her.

A&BC does not provide the following services: Executive Searches, IT, Website Development, Fundraising and Contributed Revenue Planning, or Legal. However, these agencies offer some of these services to nonprofit organizations at no or low cost:


When reviewing proposals, we prioritize BVA applications that:

    1. Primarily serve individuals and organizations that have been historically excluded from capacity-building programs.
    2. Leads to larger sector-wide learning
    3. Additionally, we take into consideration the population and geographic area(s) that your organization serves, the racial and gender composition of your organization’s leadership, and how your project fits in with the existing BVA Project portfolio as well as the other proposals submitted. Therefore, not all project proposals can be accepted. Projects may be deferred to the next round.

You can consult a sample proposal application A&BC’s team put together for prospective arts partners.

Proposal Opens: February 1, 2024

Proposal Deadline: May 24, 2024

Estimated Project Launch: July/ August 2024

Proposal Opens: June 1, 2024

Proposal Deadline:  September 27, 2024

Estimated Project Launch: November/ December 2024


Before filling out the BVA application form, we encourage you to have a copy of:

  • IRS Letter Issuing Tax-Exemption
  • Declaration of General Liability Insurance
  • Current or Most Recent Operating Budget
  • List of Staff and Board Members

The estimated completion time is 20 – 30 minutes.



  • Organizations must have proof of General Liability insurance coverage to participate in BVA.
Processing Fee (effective April 1, 2022)

Fees are based on the gross operating revenue of the nonprofit’s current budget.


For more information, contact Kristin Larsen at or 312-372-1876, ext. 101