Volunteer to be a Panelist

Arts Endowment panelists play a central role in reviewing applications for funding. We rely on panels composed of individuals who represent a broad range of artistic and cultural viewpoints, as well as wide geographic and ethnic diversity, to provide advice about the artistic excellence and artistic merit of proposals in a variety of funding categories. Our panels are composed of both arts professionals and knowledgeable laypersons. Most panelists are arts professionals who are qualified by their activities, training, skills, and/or experience in one or more art forms. Every panel also includes a layperson – someone knowledgeable about the arts but not engaged in the arts as a profession either full- or part-time.

We maintain a database to help us identify and select panelists. The NEA does not share this information with any third parties. Responding to some of the questions is voluntary and the information is used only for statistical and diversity inclusion purposes. However, inclusion in this database does not guarantee that someone will be asked to serve on a panel. 


The Arts Endowment’s legislation requires that every panel include a layperson. These are individuals who are "knowledgeable about the arts but who are not engaged in the arts as a profession and are not members of either artists’ organizations or arts organizations." Someone who currently works in the public, private, or nonprofit sector with primary job responsibilities in the arts or in arts funding is not considered a layperson. This restriction includes foundation employees, commercial arts publishers, cultural arts advisors to governmental entities, and arts educators, among others.


The Arts Endowment’s enabling legislation requires panels that are racially and ethnically diverse, so we ask for information to comply with the statute. The classifications are prescribed by the federal government’s Office of Management and Budget for federal reporting and statistical activities. They do not determine eligibility for participation on Arts Endowment panels.

Please complete both the ethnicity and race sections. If you are of mixed racial and/or national origin, you may check more than one box. Choose the category(ies) with which you most closely identify yourself, as described:


  • Hispanic or Latina/o: A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.


  • American Indian or Alaska Native: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America), and maintaining tribal affiliation or community.
  • Asian: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam.
  • Black or African American: A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa.
  • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands.
  • White: A person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa.


Primary Arts Experience


Select up to five types of organizations with which you have had working arts experience.

OMB No. 3135-0098 Exp. 7/31/2018