The Art Creates Life Institute of Leadership and Cultural Development is an international nonprofit organization committed to developing global citizens by training them to use art as a vehicle to understand and confront issues that plague humanity.
Our vision is to create leaders who value, protect, and support life through service.
ACL was founded by Executive Director, Tracie S. Jenkins in the summer of 2002. It was housed in the Johnson Memorial Baptist Church opening its’ program with 12 students. It has since served over 1,400 children in the DC Metropolitan area and abroad from various institutions such as schools, family and child services, and local community centers through our year round programs. In 2006, ACL expanded its reach to the international community by acquiring a facility and taking students to West Africa annually participating in service missions as well as artistic exchange. Art Creates Life is currently located in the Howard/Shaw community.
Art Creates Life is made up of artists from all genres who are committed to leadership through service.
” Art Creates life is a vision I never had. The vision had me. People ask ” Where did it come from? How did you come up with the name?” For a long time I didn’t have an answer. I really didn’t know. As each moment passes it becomes clearer to me; it was already there. As a small child I can remember art creating life over and over again in my bedroom with paper dolls as I designed clothes for homeless people that I would pass on the way to school. In my dad’s taxicab I remember jingling the tip cup, making music for disgruntled customers who had been passed by because of the color of their skin. Growing up in Washington, DC during the ’70’s, you had to find the music in the rhythms of life just to keep stepping and somehow moving. As I got older, my passion for soothing the ills of people who had lost their hope and belief in the human spirit because of discrimination and economic disadvantages grew stronger. I saw the power of art as a tool for compassion and healing. It is a part of that energy that provides us with the key to the soul of the world.
- Tracie S. Jenkins Founder/Executive Director
Robin Harris - General Manager
Vichelle Jones - Office Manager
Elizabeth Wyrsch - Development Officer/Grant Writer
Glennette Clark - Social Media Strategist
Tania Webb - Community Outreach Coordinator