Getting Started

The Arts & Business Council of Chicago’s (A&BC) services to arts, cultural, and creative enterprises includes management consulting; board member training; and professional learning. These programs are built to help Chicago-area  creatives improve business, managerial, operational, and organizational capacity.

To engage in Business Volunteers for the Arts ®(BVA) you will be asked to attend a meeting with a member of the A&BC staff.   If you are seeking to engage in a BVA Project, we require that the organization be a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in good standing with the IRS to begin the application process.  A&BC also supports the work of organizations, groups, or projects with a fiscal sponsor that is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in good standing with the IRS. Additional participation criteria may apply to specific programs.

10 Projects per quarter are selected. – See deadlines to apply.

You may also register for Learning Labs to meet your professional learning and capacity building needs.

A Guide to Our Services

Business Volunteers for the Arts® (BVA)
The BVA program recruits and trains skilled Chicagoans interested in volunteering, and matches them to serve on pro bono consulting projects for nonprofits in the Chicago area. Organizations must have proof of General Liability insurance coverage to participate in BVA.

Through the On BOARD program, we train individuals and organizations on the foundations of board service. Participants learn the fundamentals of nonprofit board roles and responsibilities; board-staff relations; legal and fiduciary responsibilities; and a board’s role in fundraising.

Learning Labs
A&BC provides professional learning opportunities for arts, cultural, and creative leaders looking to deepen their knowledge of nonprofit management practices. Learning Labs cover leading research and emerging issues in:

  • Concept Development & Planning
  • Board Governance
  • Financial Management
  • Audience Development & Marketing
  • Income Generation
  • Staffing & Structure
  • Facilities

This proprietary online assessment tool helps your organization measure management and oversight capacity, helping you develop a healthy and balanced organization with the resources you have.


For more information, contact