Paul S. Flores, 2020 NFA Catalyst for Change Grantee

Catalyst for Change Fellowship

Supporting US and Puerto Rico-based Latinx artists in the advancement of racial justice through community-centered, artistic solutions.

Letter of Interest (LOI) submission Extended Deadline June 23, 2022.

Paul S. Flores, 2020 NFA Catalyst for Change Grantee


The Catalyst for Change (CFC) Fellowship focuses on radical imagination as a key component of pursuing racial justice. The award is intended to catalyze community-based and artist produced visions for creative solutions to injustices.

With major support from the Surdna Foundation, NALAC is supporting Latinx artists and culture workers with the potential to utilize collaborative, community informed process, combined with their artistic practice t o increase civic engagement/activism, thereby creating systemic change through artistic interventions.

As a CFC Fellow, artists commit to engaging and using:

  1. Participatory Action Research (PAR) as a methodology to collaboratively work towards systemic change through relationship building, data gathering/collection, and analysis with members in their communities, and
  2. Develop an artistic project which creates the conditions required to disrupt systems of oppression.

View the 2022 Guidelines

Anel I Flores, 2020 Catalyst for Change, NFA Grantee
Anel I Flores, 2020 Catalyst for Change, NFA Grantee

Program Timeline

Phase 1
Community Research (PAR)
Phase 1 is a community-led research phase in which the fellow will be trained to facilitate and participate in Participatory Action Research Process.

Phase 2
Artistic Planning and Intervention Details
Phase 2 is an artistic planning and intervention phase in which the fellow design and implement an artistic intervention that is formed by their community research experience, and which aims to increase community conditions, racial justice, and social justice with regard to a certain issue area.

Learn More About the Timeline

Catalyst for Change Timeline

Deadline: CFC Letter of Interest Form Submission Extended Deadline - June 23, 2022

IMPORTANT: CHECK YOUR TIME ZONE. NALAC’s online application system will automatically close at 11:59PM Central Time. All application materials must be submitted electronically via the online system by the posted deadline.

All individuals interested in applying to the NALAC Fund for the Arts must visit the NALAC Submissions Manager ( and create a Submittable account.

The application for CFC will occur in two stages:

Stage 1- Open Call - CFC Letter of Interest Form
May 11 - June 9, 2022 (4 weeks) *Extended Deadline June 23, 2022

Offered in an open call format, interested applicants are invited to submit a CFC Letter of Interest Form in which the applicant will answer five narrative questions which focus on understanding the applicant’s role in their community, the applicant’s perspective on working with communities on racial justice and equity, and the applicant’s capacity to fully engage with the 2022 CFC Fellowship Program.

Stage 2- By Invitation Only - 2022 CFC Fellowship Application

Offered by invitation only, select applicants who submitted a CFC Letter of Interest form will be asked to submit a more comprehensive application for the CFC Fellowship. More application details, including evaluation criteria for awarded fellowships, will be shared with select applicants.

Applicants being invited to submit a 2022 CFC Fellowship Application will be notified of their application status by the end of June.

Applicants will have two weeks to submit the full application and requested materials.

Primary applicants will be notified via the email associated with their Submittable account if their CFC Letter of Interest form has been offered an invitation to submit the 2022 CFC Fellowship Application.

The following support opportunities are available to applicants throughout the open call. Applicants may participate in a live info session, review a recorded info session, join a casual ‘office hours’ session to connect with staff, or schedule a private consultation with staff. In these settings NALAC staff will be available to answer questions, provide support, encouragement, and technical support throughout the application season.

Live Applicant Support Webinars for CFC

Thursday, May 19, 2022 from 3:00pm – 4:00pm CST

Thursday, May 26, 2022 from 3:00pm – 4:00pm CST

Register Here

Office Hours Sessions for CFC

NALAC staff may connect virtually to answer questions about the CFC Fellowship or its application process in an “office hours” or “cafecito” casual format. We recommend all interested applicants join a ‘office hours’ or ‘cafecito’ session to allow an opportunity for NALAC staff to hear their questions and offer support. Please use the link below to RSVP and drop into a NALAC CFC Office Hours session.

Saturday, May 21, 2022, 3:00pm – 4:00pm CST
Join the NALAC CFC Office Hours Here

Please note that additional opportunities to connect with NALAC staff using this format will be made available throughout the open call. Follow NALAC on social media to stay up to date on CFC open call programming.

Individual Consultations

Individual consultations with NALAC staff will only be available by request and appointment only. We recommend all prospective applicants with questions utilize the NALAC CFC Office Hours session as the key opportunity to connect with NALAC staff, as individual consultations may not be available for all applicants.

General Inquiries

Inquiries may be submitted in writing via the NALAC Programs Support Desk. Please allow up to three business days for a response to your inquiry.

Meet our Year 1 artists.

In its initial year, the Catalyst for Change grant, NALAC worked with past grantees and alumni with experience in community arts practice to build out and model the new Catalyst for Change grant program. Through an invitation-based process eleven artists, representing seven different states and artistic disciplines worked with NALAC in this model year with projects addressing systems of injustice within their own communities.

Browse Grant Projects

Michelle Angela Ortiz, 2020 NFA Catalyst for Change Grantee
Michelle Angela Ortiz, 2020 NFA Catalyst for Change Grantee

Meet our Year 1 Collaborators.

In the first iteration of the Catalyst for Change program, NALAC collaborated with peers in the arts field with deep expertise in cultural strategy, community-engaged artistic practice and racial justice work to provide additional support for artists.
Ebony Noelle Golden

Ebony Noelle Golden

Betty’s Daughter Arts Collaborative

Ebony Noelle Golden is the principal consultant of Betty’s Daughter Arts Collaborative, cultural strategist, performance artist and scholar who is serving as the program’s education and evaluation strategist.

Lisa Yancey

Lisa Yancey

Yancey Consulting

Lisa Yancey is the president of Yancy Consulting (YC) and served as a Year 1 program coach. She is a strategist, social impact entrepreneur, community builder and visionary that specializes in organizational development, economic modeling, evaluation and assessments and leadership coaching.

Lauren Ruffin

Lauren Olivia Ruffin

Fractured Atlas/Crux

Lauren Ruffin is the co-founder of Crux and co-CEO of Fractured Atlas and served as a Year 1 program coach. She is a thinker, designer, & leader interested in building strong, sustainable, anti-racist systems and organizations.,

Joel Garcia

Joel Garcia (Huichol)

Meztli Projects

Joel Garcia (Huichol) is an artist, arts administrator and cultural organizer with 20+ years of working transnationally focusing on community-centered strategies. He served as a Year 1 program coach. He’s the co-founder of Meztli Projects, an Indigenous based arts & culture collaborative centering indigeneity into the creative practice of Los Angeles.,

Selina Morales

Selina Morales

Southwest Folklife Alliance

Selina Morales is the lead folklorist for the Radical Imagination for Racial Justice program strategy and the Participatory Action Research partner for NALAC and Year 1 artists.

Driving Values & Definitions.

Equity – the fair treatment, access, opportunity and advancement for all people that also identifies and eliminates barriers that have limited the full participation or inclusion of some groups. Addressing issues of equity requires an understanding of the root causes of oppression and disparities within our society.

Community – a group of people who are connected by geographic place, identify with historical or
ethnic traditions, beliefs or spirit. This definition is provided by our partners at Alternate ROOTS.

Racial justice is the systematic fair treatment of people of all races, with equitable outcomes for all. This definition is sourced from the article “Origin of the Idea of Race” by Audrey Smedley.

Radical – the term radical inherits its most powerful meaning from the Latin radix or “root.” For the purposes of this grant, we believe that radical imagination of new solutions or approaches are informed by the deeply rooted tensions, contradictions, power imbalances and forms of oppression and exploitation that exist in our society, politics, economy and culture.

Read the Surdna Foundation’s original press release here.…


Read the Press Release

Jesus CIMI Alvarado, 2020 NFA Catalyst for Change Grantee
Jesus CIMI Alvarado, 2020 NFA Catalyst for Change Grantee