The more diverse Jacksonville becomes, the harder we must work to achieve trust and unity. As a city with a wealth of history and people who are migrants and immigrants, citizens, nationals and multi-nationals, Jacksonville has before it an opportunity to embrace the natural assets found in its resident arts and culture. There is tremendous potential for employing basic ideas from cultural nationalism to a contemporary community-based frame that harnesses the restorative potential of arts and culture for people and in communities.
Whereas cultural nationalism of the past set out to provide a singular vision of America’s identity and history, today we can utilize the arts and culture as tools for inclusion, equity, education, and empowerment. This new frame does not nullify the significance of arts and culture; rather it highlights their intrinsic and instrumental value. Arts and culture are unique because they are both a strategy and tactic for facilitating a common culture of community unity, not uniformity, to shape Jacksonville’s identity and future.
As executive director of the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville, Joy Young is committed to shaping strategy, as well as developing and executing proactive and quantifiable arts and cultural-based initiatives that address priority issues such as economic and community development. She advocates for arts funding, policy development and reform, and implements initiatives and programs that support the vision that the arts and culture are recognized by all as essential for quality of life in Northeast Florida.
In addition to giving back to her community as an AmeriCorps Promise Fellow, Joy has more than 25 years of experience in the arts as a vocalist, arts administrator, and an academic. She is a recitalist, sanctuary soloist, and studio background vocalist. Her work in academia includes adjunct teaching at Benedict College, the University of South Carolina, and Winthrop University; guest lecturer at Coastal Carolina University and College of Charleston; and a contributor to research and textbook development.
Joy holds a Bachelors of Arts in music, a Master of Arts in voice performance, and has completed coursework for a Ph.D. in organizational leadership. Joy’s combination of education and experience provides both strength of practice and application that are critically important to Jacksonville’s key public sector arts and culture position.