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The Allan Cowen Innovation Fund for Advancement of the Arts fosters creative intellectual exploration in the pursuit of arts leadership and organizational evolution. Established through a generous gift by the Bertram Klein Family, the award is given annually in honor of Allan Cowen’s 37 years of service to the arts. Cowen’s innovations have served as a foundation for arts organizations and the arts sector across the United States.

The Innovation Fund provides funding for Greater Louisville arts administrators and artists to pursue professional development opportunities which will allow them to explore innovative ideas, further develop their skills, and advance the arts community long term.

Who is eligible?

  • Arts leaders in the Greater Louisville region.
    • Greater Louisville is defined as: Kentucky counties of Jefferson, Shelby, Oldham, Spencer, and Bullitt, and Indiana counties of Clark and Floyd.
  • Only individuals may apply, not organizations or a group of artists or arts administrators.
  • The intent of the award is to support an individual’s professional growth and is not meant to support the development or expansion of an organization’s project.

Previous winners:

  • 2017: Andrew Kipe and Teddy Abrams, Louisville Orchestra
  • 2016: Lindy Casebier, Louisville Visual Art Executive Director
  • 2015: Matt Wallace, Kentucky Shakespeare Producing Artistic Director
  • 2014: Alison Huff, Commonwealth Theatre Center Managing Director

Application Details

Award Amount: $5,000

Applications should clearly state how the funding will advance the applicant’s vision for transforming or advancing his/her work and institution.

The award is not intended to serve as or replace funding for traditional professional development activities.

Grant Guidelines Click Here to Submit a New Application
Click here to access an application already in progress


Program Timeline:

June 18:                    Award availability announced

August 18:                Award applications and nominations due by 5 pm EST

Late September:     Award recipient announced


Contact Information for proposal submission or questions:

Kat Abner, Impact Officer
P| 502.582.0127