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Society for Contemporary Craft is new Champion in Action

Agency receives $25,000 grant, volunteer and promotional support

PITTSBURGH (October 6, 2010) -  Citizens Bank and WPXI-TV today named the Society for Contemporary Craft as their fourth quarter Champion in Action® under the category of community arts. The Society for Contemporary Craft, the only organization in the region devoted exclusively to contemporary craft, will receive a $25,000 grant from the Citizens Bank Foundation, and extensive volunteer and promotional support from Citizens Bank, WPXI-TV and Pittsburgh Cares.

“Citizens Bank is pleased to join WPXI-TV in naming the Society for Contemporary Craft as our newest Champion in Action,” said Ralph J. Papa, Chairman of Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. “Under the leadership of Executive Director Janet McCall, this tremendous organization has presented contemporary art in craft media by international, national and regional artists since 1971, offering cutting-edge exhibitions focused on multi-cultural diversity and non-mainstream art, as well as a range of classes and community outreach programs.”

“As an organization committed to the community, WPXI-TV is proud to partner with Citizens Bank to honor the Society for Contemporary Craft,” said Ray Carter, WPXI-TV’s general manager. “WPXI-TV congratulates the Society for Contemporary Craft on the excellent work it does in presenting attendees with the highest quality, innovative work that explores issues and questions related to contemporary life.”

Through Champions in Action, Citizens Bank and WPXI-TV recognize and support nonprofit organizations for the contributions these groups make to communities in the Pittsburgh region. A new Champion in Action is selected each quarter among a range of social service areas.

As a Champion in Action, the Society for Contemporary Craft will receive:

  • $25,000 contribution in unrestricted funds from the Citizens Bank Foundation.
  • Media coverage from WPXI-TV, including public service announcements and TV profile.
  • Volunteer support from Pittsburgh Cares and Citizens and WPXI-TV employees.
  • Extensive public relations support.
  • Promotional support, highlighting the organization in all Citizens Bank branches.
  • Exposure on both Citizens Bank and WPXI-TV Web sites.

What makes the Society for Contemporary Craft a Champion in Action?

  • To strengthen knowledge and appreciation of the creative process and to build connections between artists and the public, the Society for Contemporary Craft has designed an innovative slate of education and outreach programs. For 15 years the Museum/School Partnership has used art to support interdisciplinary learning in core subjects in Pittsburgh public schools. A mini-residency with Community School East in Turtle Creek was created in 2009 as a regional, long-term education alternative for court supervised youth unable to adjust to public schools.
  • Approximately 23,000 individuals visit the Society for Contemporary Craft at its Strip District location and another 100,000 visit its satellite gallery at One Mellon Center annually. The Society for Contemporary Craft is committed to offering as much free access to arts programming as possible – not only through free admissions, but also through hands-on art making experiences for under-served populations.
  • Through collaborative partnerships with community providers in the region, SCC takes its education and outreach programs into the community, focusing on at-risk youths, senior citizens in assisted living facilities and families in homeless shelters.

    “A key aspect is helping people to see the connections between creativity and daily life,” said Executive Director Janet McCall. “The Society for Contemporary Craft presents the best of national and international multi-disciplinary and multi-cultural contemporary art in craft media.”

    In addition to the Society for Contemporary Craft, the following organizations have been selected as Champions in Action since the program was introduced in western Pennsylvania in 2004: Wilkinsburg Community Ministry, Aliquippa Alliance for Unity and Development, Beginning with Books, The Neighborhood Academy, HEARTH, Human Services Center Corporation, Washington Community Arts and Cultural Center, Rainbow Kitchen Community Services, Sojourner House MOMS, Little Sisters of the Poor, Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, Health Hope Network, YouthPlaces, the Bloomfield-Garfield Corporation, Oakland Planning and Development Corporation, Family Tyes, and NeighborWorks®, Paul Laurence Dunbar Community Center, Light of Life Rescue Mission, Dress for Success, POWER, Project for Freedom, Providence Connections, and RiverQuest.

    To learn more about the Society for Contemporary Craft, located at 2100 Smallman Street, visit www.contemporarycraft.org.

    About Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania

    Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania is a state-chartered bank with dual headquarters in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. It has 383 branches and 972 ATMs throughout Pennsylvania. It also operates 15 retail branches and 104 ATMs in southern New Jersey and a commercial loan office in Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Citizens Financial Group, Inc., a $140 billion commercial bank holding company headquartered in Providence, R.I.

    Citizens Financial Group, through its subsidiaries, has more than 1,500 branches and approximately 3,500 ATMs, and approximately 22,700 employees. CFG’s two bank subsidiaries are RBS Citizens, N.A. and Citizens Bank of Pennsylvania. They operate a 12-state branch network under the Citizens Bank brand in Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont, and the Charter One brand in Illinois, Michigan and Ohio. CFG has non-branch retail and commercial offices in about 40 states. CFG is owned by RBS (The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc).

    About WPXI

    WPXI-TV is a Cox Television station in the Pittsburgh television market. Cox Television includes 15 television stations, three national television sales representation firms, a television production company, and a Washington, D.C. news office. Cox Television is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises, Inc., based in Atlanta. WPXI-TV’s Web site is wpxi.com.