News Release

Maritz Awards Arts and Education Council $30,000 for Arts Education Grants

July 10, 2017

Since 2009, Maritz has contributed nearly $220,000 to support 61 grants in schools across bi-state region. 

ST. LOUIS, MO (July 10, 17). The Arts and Education Council (A&E) announced today that Maritz has generously renewed its support of $30,000 to underwrite the Maritz Arts and Education Fund for Teachers. This distinctive granting program provides opportunities for teachers, schools and non-profit arts organizations to offer programs that encourage creativity in the classroom. It is one of only a few in the region that enable teachers and schools to apply directly for arts education grants. A community review panel evaluates qualified grant applications and the Arts and Education Council administers the funding on behalf of Maritz.

Maritz has served as the title sponsor of the Arts and Education Fund for Teachers for since 2009. To date, Maritz has provided nearly $220,000 for 61 impactful grants to schools across the region, including:

  • Poetry and pottery in Hazelwood Schools District
  • Illustrated stories in the St. Louis City Juvenile Detention Center
  • A piano lab in the Normandy School Collaborative
  • Art and gardening in Scope Alternative School in the Mehlville School District
  • Performing arts enrichment in East St. Louis, IL
  • New band instruments in Valley Park, MO

Since the fund’s inception, data collected by A&E and local teachers has shown that increased access to the arts in schools has resounding, positive effects in students’ overall academic achievement, standardized test scores, school attendance and college acceptance rates as well as students’ personal growth.

“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with the Arts and Education Council,” said Debbie Schirmer, Maritz community affair director. “In collaboration with the Arts and Education Council, we are able to provide individual teachers, schools, and non-profit organizations the critical funding for art education projects that would otherwise go unfunded. Together, we feel our two organizations are making a difference in our communities.”

“We know that when the arts thrive, our kids thrive – they perform better in the classroom when they are inspired and challenged by arts education opportunities,” said Cynthia A. Prost, president & CEO of the Arts and Education Council. “A&E’s partnership with Maritz has led to thousands of inspiring and impactful moments across our region, and sets a shining example of how corporate citizenship can lead to outstanding, tangible results for a thriving community.” Grant applications will open late summer 2017. For more information on A&E’s grant programs, visit

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About the Arts and Education Council: When the Arts Thrive, Our City Thrives. – The Arts and Education Council (A&E), is the St. Louis region's United Arts Fund providing financial, technical and educational support for arts organizations. A&E’s mission is to build appreciation, participation and support for arts and arts education throughout the St. Louis community. A&E is the only privately funded arts umbrella organization that serves the 16-county, bi-state St. Louis region. A&E builds a thriving arts community and impacts millions of people through multi-faceted programs, including: Operating and Project Grants; Arts Education Grants for Teachers; Arts Incubation at the Centene Center for the Arts; a Catalyst Innovation Lab; a stARTup Competition for Arts Entrepreneurs; stARTup-StL Crowdfunding Platform; Arts Leadership Management Academy (ALMA); Executive Directors Roundtable; Arts Marketers Professional Development; the Annual St. Louis Arts Awards; and Young Friends of the Arts.

Since its inception in 1963, the Arts and Education Council has raised and distributed more than $100 million in private funding for the arts – a significant contribution that directly impacts the quality of life in our region. A&E meets all 20 Better Business Bureau Charity Standards and has earned the Wise Giving Seal of Approval, a three-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Guidestar Exchange Silver Participant rating.

How to find us – Website:
Phone: 314.289.4000.
Facebook: ArtsandEducation
Twitter: @ArtEdSTL
YouTube: ArtsandEducSTL
Instagram: Arts_Education_Council

About Maritz – St. Louis-based Maritz is a sales and marketing services company, which helps businesses achieve their full potential through inspiring and motivating employees, channel partners and customers. Maritz companies provide market and customer research; customer loyalty, sales incentives and employee rewards and recognition programs; and meeting, event and travel incentive services to Fortune 500 companies and beyond. For more information, visit or contact us at 1-877-4MARITZ.

Follow Maritz on Twitter: @Maritz_MHI