James B. Borders IV is a consultant specializing in organizational development and capacity building for cultural and social
service nonprofit corporations. Working as a full-time consultant since 2001, he has provided strategic planning and fund
development services to an array of progressive nonprofits -- from musems and cultural centers to community housing development
organizations and a substance-abuse treatment center.
Borders is also director of research and cultural policy for
the African Grove Institute for the Arts (AGIA), a national service organization for Black arts & humanities organizations.
Borders served as executive director of the Louisiana Division of the Arts from 1995-2001. That state agency provided technical assistance and $5 million in annual grantmaking to several hundred Louisiana
artists and nonprofit institutions. Prior to heading the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Borders served as managing director
of the National Black Arts Festival (NBAF), Atlanta, GA, from 1993-1995. The NBAF presents and produces multidisciplinary festivals showcasing the finest in performing,
visual, media, literary and folk arts of the African Diaspora.
A native of New Orleans, Borders has also been managing
director of Junebug Productions (successor to the legendary Free Southern Theater, a cultural arm of the Civil Rights Movement)
and performance curator at the Contemporary Arts Center. Both organizations are based in New Orleans. At the Contemporary Arts Center, Borders also directed the Regional Artists
Projects (RAP) grants program for the four-state region of Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi. The program was jointly
funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation and the Andy Warhol Foundation.
began his arts administration career at the University of Rhode Island, where he served as coordinator of major events from
1971-73 and presented a wide range of celebrity lecturers and large-scale concerts featuring jazz, rock and popular music.
Borders earned a bachelor's degree in Theatre Arts and a master's in Creative Writing at Brown University, where he
was awarded the Shubert Foundation Fellowship in Dramatic Writing. In 1970, he co-founded Rites & Reason Theatre, the innovative community/student/professional multidisciplinary performing arts company based at Brown in Providence, RI.
Borders has acted professionally on stage with the Free Southern Theater and in a long-running production of the hit
jazz-musical One Mo' Time. He has been a member of the Screen Actors Guild since 1976 and has had roles in over two dozen
feature and made-for-TV films and commercials.
A former award-winning journalist, Borders has been editor of The Black Collegian Magazine and the New Orleans Tribune, a newsmonthly he co-founded in 1985. He has also been a reporter for the New Orleans States-Item. Borders currently writes
Borderline, a monthly column of cultural and political commentary for the New Orleans Tribune.
At present, he serves
on the boards of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation and the All For One Foundation. He previously completed terms on the honorary artistic committee of Étant Donné, the French-American Fund for the Performing
Arts; the national policy board of Americans for the Arts; The Association of American Cultures; the Southern Arts Federation;
the Louisiana Film Commission; the Louisiana Folklife Commission; and the Louisiana Superintendent of Education's Task Force
on Arts Education. In 1980-81, he was president of the Louisiana Jazz Federation.
Borders has written grants for a
variety of small and mid-sized nonprofit organizations that have been awarded millions of dollars by a diverse roster of public,
private and corporate funders. In addition, he has served as a grants review panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts,
the Lila Wallace/Reader's Digest Fund, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the Nonprofit Finance Fund, the Michigan Council
for Arts and Cultural Affairs, the Arkansas Arts Council, Entergy Corporation and other public and private grantmakers.
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