2017 Inspiration Breakfast

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Gallery | 7:30-9:00am

Event Co-Chairs: Chuck McCann and Dana Abraham

Featuring: Arts in Prison, ArtsKC Fund Grant Recipient

Check back soon for more information about the 2017 Event

The 8th annual Inspiration Breakfast will be an opportunity to learn how ArtsKC’s missions and programs unleash the power of the arts for the benefit of the Kansas City region.

Please contact Paige DuBay at DuBay@ArtsKC.org with questions.

2017 Sponsorships
  • Please select your sponsor level.

    For sponsors at the $5,000 level and up, please select the level below and you will be invoiced, to remove the high cost of credit card processing fees.
    • Opportunity to be the ONLY corporate or foundation sponsor of the 8th Annual ArtsKC Inspiration Breakfast • Company logo on all event materials, including: • Save the Date/Invitation Communications • Event print program • Pre and Post-event digital communications • Event web page and ArtsKC.org homepage for 12 months • Event sponsor recognition loop • Name opportunity: “2017 Inspiration Breakfast presented by...” • Sponsor recognition from podium • Sponsor banner displayed in the venue • Recognition in social media • Featured article in ArtsKC Unleashed print newsletter (5,000) • Premier VIP seating for 10 guests • Opportunity to contribute items for event tables • Logo on nametags at the event • Logo on all table signage • Featured Artist Sponsorship at the 15th Annual ArtsKC Awards Luncheon on March 8, 2018 (visit ArtsKC.org/Awards for info)
  • Can't join us at the ArtsKC Inspiration Breakfast? Make a contribution online to support the mission of ArtsKC.
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2016 Event + Honorary Chairpersons

2016 Honorary Chairs:

Nerman Family Photo

The Nerman Family with “Shoppers” (1976) by Duane Hanson. Photo by: Sarah Strnad

The Nermans are celebrated collectors of contemporary art, generous philanthropists, and valued leaders in the regional arts community. Jerome and Margaret Nerman, as well as son Lewis and daughter-in-law Sue, boast extensive internationally-recognized collections in their Leawood homes which they share with the community on a regular basis. In a feature on Lewis and Sue’s collection in KC Studio’s May/June 2016 Issue, Lewis stated “My Dad has always lived by the three S’s: We search for the art. We secure the art. We share the art.”

The Nerman family is highly recognized for their generosity to the arts and cultural community in Kansas City. In 2003, the Nerman family gave the lead gift to assist in funding the construction of a contemporary art museum on the campus of the Johnson County Community College. The Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art has one of the top internationally acclaimed collections of emerging and established artists today. In February of 2016, the Kansas City Art Institute announced a gift from Jerry and Margaret Nerman and Lewis and Sue Nerman, to permanently endow the position of the school’s president as part of a 2:1 matching challenge grant by an anonymous donor, via the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation. The Nerman family are generous supporters of ArtsKC and we are thrilled to recognize the work of this inventive family during the 7th annual Inspiration Breakfast.

Event Chairs:

Siobhan McLaughlin Lesley and Julie Nelson Meers. Photo by: Tom Styrkowicz

Siobhan’s affiliations read like a Who’s Who of Kansas City Advertising. Formerly the president of a large Kansas City agency and a long-time champion for the arts, she is arguably one of the most well-known and respected individuals in Kansas City. Her honors include KC Ad Person of the Year and Women Who Mean Business by the Kansas City Business Journal. Officially, Siobhan leads a talented and collaborative department of account management partners at WTA, helping them pursue innovative strategies and develop unique ways to serve clients.

A powerhouse of energy and insight, Siobhan has been a leader on the ArtsKC Board. With her insight, the Marketing Committee at ArtsKC has reached more people than ever before. Most can remember the superb Aperitif Series in 2015 where Siobhan implemented a plan of excellence that has left a mark on the arts community. Her guidance on the Inspiration Panel for the ArtsKC Fund has developed a community of supporters who understand that investing in the arts, whether it is with time or funds, will always mean more art tomorrow.

Julie has been in the Kansas City banking community for almost 30 years, 20 of which have been with Missouri Bank. She has been instrumental in helping define both the internal culture and unique customer experience for which mobank is known. In addition, she has earned a reputation for providing thoughtful support and wise counsel to scores of small businesses and entrepreneurs, helping them think through the best decisions for their business. Julie is a member of Missouri Bank’s senior management team, with responsibilities in commercial banking, marketing and customer experience. Her honors include Woman Who Means Business by the Kansas City Business Journal and a Women of Influence by Kansas City Business Magazine.

Julie has shared her expertise with many in the Kansas City community, serving on numerous boards and committees. She is a frequent guest speaker on all things entrepreneurial, banking, cultural and financial. Julie served as a faculty member of the Graduate School of Banking – Colorado (GSBC) from 2004-2014 and also served as a GSBC Board Trustee during her tenure there.  She is currently serving on the boards of the Charlotte Street Foundation and the Mayor’s Corp of Progress.

2016 Event Sponsors

2016 Presenting Sponsor

Encore Sponsor

Bravo Sponsors

Celebrate Sponsors

Overland Park Convention Center

Gould Evans

Irwin & Rita Blitt

Applause Sponsors

Kyle Danner

Tom & Teresa Walsh

JE Dunn

McCownGordon Construction

Commerce Bank

Missouri Bank

Rivas Photography

Bill & Fani Schifman

Richard B. & Lynn M. Klein Foundation

Crestwood Midstream Partners

Siobhan McLaughlin Lesley

Meers Advertising

Rivas Photography

Sam Meers & Julie Nelson Meers

Central Bank of Kansas City

Other Sponsors

Howard Jacobson

Charles & Lisa Schellhorn

Scott & Karen Seitter

Harvey & Alice Grossman

Justin & Bev Johl

Dr. Loretta Britton

Dave Von Fintel

Ira B. Taylor

Please see the “sponsorship” tab for more details on how to become an event sponsor today! 

2016 Inspiration Breakfast Sponsorships

2016 Table Hosts

Table hosts are essential to the success of ArtsKC’s annual Inspiration Breakfast. We are proud to announce the 2016 Inspiration Breakfast Table Captains, listed below.

Please contact Paige DuBay (DuBay@ArtsKC.org) for details on becoming part of this select group of arts advocates.

2016 Inspiration Breakfast Table Captains

Andrew Lang Karen Seitter
Angie Dreher Kelly Porter
Anita von Daniken Kevin Pinkowski
Arzie Umali Kristin Atkinson
Ashley Brown Morris Kyle Danner
Ashley Toma Laura Schmidt
Becky Blades Linda Jordan
Bradley Petzold & Godfrey Riddle Maria Maffry
Bruce Davis Marissa Baum
Candace Cummings Mary Noulles
Carey Rich Matthew Wilson & Kenny Beall
Cecilia O’Hara Mayor Eileen Weir
Cheryl Toh Melanie Haas
Cheryl Eve Acosta Michelle Morse
Christa Cavanaugh Michelle Suter
Cindy Reynolds Michelle Dreher
Claire Brand Mike LaMonica
Damian Lair Nate Orr
Dan Walsh Nerman Family
Dana Abraham & Chuck McCann Patricia McMahan
Daniel Silva Peggy Donica
Danny Zaslavsky Rachel Comment
Darcy Stewart Ray Sousley & Lynn Turner Sousley
Dave von Fintel Richard Wetzel
Dave Wowak Rob Robinson
Davin Gordon Robert Curland
Dawn Taylor Robert  Riccardi
Dawn Zerbs Rosemary Salerno
Debbie Glassberg Ryan Davis
Dominique Davison Samantha Cusumano
Edgar Palacios Sara Kluba
Fred V. Cornwell Sarah Morris
Gayle & Bruce Krigel Sarah Strnad
Hannah Hasselquist Shannon King
Holly Nielsen Sheila Seck
Jacquie Ward Siobhan McLaughlin Lesley
Jared Campbell Sonie Joi Thompson-Ruffin
Jean-Paul Wong Stephanie Ulsh
Jennifer Isom Moran Steve & Mary Anne McDowell
Jennifer Sivwright Sue Houdek
Jessica Nelson Susannah Evans
Jill McCarthy Suzanne Southard
John Hoffman Tiffany King
Joyce Hrinya Tim McCoy
Julie Nelson Meers Tom & Loretta Mentzer
Kalie Hudson Vicky Kulikov
2016 Featured Artist

2016 Featured Artist:

Brad Cox


Composer and arranger Brad Cox is co-founder of Owen/Cox Dance Group, leader of the Brad Cox Octet, and founder and director of The People’s Liberation Big Band of Greater Kansas City, a musicians’ collective dedicated to the performance of new large ensemble jazz music. Cox’s musical influences range from liturgical chant and traditional folkloric music to popular music and free jazz, with a particular interest in the communal aspects of music making. A composer in the uniquely American Ellington tradition, he has dedicated his work to forming creative collaborative relationships with musicians and to writing music for those musicians. His composition and arrangement credits include Sony Classical recording artist Nathan Granner, Paris-based songwriter Krystle Warren, and Grammy award-winning producer and engineer Russ Elevado. Cox studied composition at UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance under James Mobberley and Gerald Kemner and is a recipient of the 2010 Charlotte Street Foundation Generative Performing Artist Award and the 2009 Tanne Foundation Award.

Cox’s work has been greatly supported by ArtsKC Fund’s grant programs through repeated Catalyst Grant support to Owen/Cox Dance Group, an Inspiration Grant for the Brad Cox Octet, two Inspiration Grants for The People’s Liberation Big Band for projects led by Matt Otto and Patrick Alonzo Conway, and through his ongoing work with Ovation Grant recipient Paul Mesner Puppets.

“I believe that human beings are inherently creative and that the desire to add something to this world is fundamental to the human condition. I write music and lead ensembles because, for me, music is the most satisfying and fulfilling way of adding something to the world. At times I have struggled with justifying to myself the pursuit of a career in music. After all, if my career is like the vast majority of musicians and composers, my music will have little impact beyond our local community, and is unlikely to last beyond my own lifetime—and certainly I know that my compositions will never equal the great works of my musical heroes. But I think artists do themselves and the community a great disservice if they feel justified only in creating art that is guaranteed to reach a certain number of audience members, or more improbably, create art that approaches the same level of genius as the work of our artistic idols. The most important task for the artist is to work consistently, steadily and perhaps even with joy—but if not with joy, at least with hope.”-Brad Cox