Creative Santa Fe, the local nonprofit that brought community entities together to deal with “intractable questions” on issues that spanned both the local and international stage, could not solve its own dilemma with social distancing and no mass gatherings.
The organization announced Wednesday it will reach inactive status Nov. 1.
At the same time, independent of the decision to go inactive, Creative Santa Fe Executive Director Cyndi Conn, who has been with the organization since 2011, announced she is leaving the city to become curator and program lead for a private project in Park City, Utah.
Creative Santa Fe’s board of directors will “assess the developing new environment for nonprofits,” uncertain when or if the organization will be revived, said board Chairman Bill Miller.
The organization opted not to continue with Zoom meetings.
“It’s not as effective as it can be,” Miller said. “We can’t convene. We can’t bring people together. Everybody is going online. We’re most effective when [we] bring people together on a subject.”
Since its foundation in 2005, Creative Santa Fe has been a “convening organization” dedicated to leveraging Santa Fe’s arts community and entrepreneurial spirit to work on key issues.
Two hallmark achievements, Miller said, were staging a nuclear weapons summit in 2016 and initiating the Siler Yard Arts + Creativity Center to provide affordable housing for artists. The 65-unit development is under construction on Siler Road.
Creative Santa Fe went inactive once before in the late 2000s and was revived by Miller in 2011, who brought on Conn, first as its program director. She was elevated to executive director in 2013. Conn had been involved with various Santa Fe art organizations since 1997.
In a news release, Conn said the organization has helped bring the community together.
“We have implemented truly impactful projects, curated thought-provoking dialogues,” she said.
Creative Santa Fe handed off its $18.77 million Siler Yard idea to New Mexico Inter-Faith Housing, a Santa Fe affordable housing developer and property management firm.
Still in the works is launching the Santa Fe Data Platform, which will enhance the effective use of data to ensure smart public policy, sound use of taxpayer dollars and innovative strategies to grow the economy, according to a Creative Santa Fe news release.