Federal/State Partnership is a collaborative effort links a national federal agency with fifty-six independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit state and jurisdictional humanities councils and helps the National Endowment for the Humanities realize its two primary strategic goals of advancing knowledge and understanding of the humanities and increasing public awareness of, access to, and support for the humanities in the United States. This partnership makes humanities education and lifelong learning readily available at the local level, uniquely tailored to local interests and needs and drawing upon local resources and experiences.
The core work of Federal/State Partnership is to oversee the councils' congressionally appropriated general operating support grants, carry out on-site consultations and review which are conducted on a five-year cycle, provide councils basic general liability insurance, and maintain network wide communication. The staff's work includes reading council board minutes, newsletters, and other publications. The staff also regularly reviews council websites and sends out an e-newsletter the third or fourth week of each month (sign up to receive this newsletter or update your contact information) to council staff and board chairs as well as communicates with councils by means of the listservs set up by the Federation of State Humanities Councils.
A one-page description of the work of Federal/State Partnership is available for download.
Federal/State Partnership encourages councils to produce and support splendid humanities programming, serve as models of excellent nonprofit management, maintain open communication, mutual support, and shared goals with NEH and other councils, and exercise responsible impeccable stewardship of public—and all—funds entrusted to them.
The work of Federal/State Partnership and the councils is legislatively mandated, including the funding formula which determines how the amount of each council's general operating support grant is calculated. General operating support grants are managed in accordance with established NEH guidelines. Councils are also eligible to apply for any other NEH grant opportunities.
The Federal/State Partnership network includes the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Federal/State Partnership office at NEH, and the state humanities councils. The Federation of State Humanities Councils is the councils' membership organization. Download a printable version of the contact information for the fifty-six state humanities councils.
The National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities Act of 1965 is the legislation under which the National Endowment for the Humanities and the state humanities councils operate. The legislation about state humanities councils is Sec. 956 (sec. 7)(f)(1-7). Other pertinent sections are:
- Sec. 951. Declaration of findings and purposes
- Sec. 956. National Endowment for the Humanities
- Sec. 959. Administrative provisions