Shelley Trott, Kenneth Rainin Foundation

TITLE: Director of Arts Strategies and Ventures

FOCUS AREAS: Art, dance, film

CONTACT: 510-625-5207; shelley.trott@krfoundation.org

PROFILE: Shelley Trott’s background is in dance, choreography, filmmaking, and philanthropy. Since 2009, Trott has served as Rainin’s lead staff person for arts, which has involved the following duties:

  • Managed a performing arts grant program;
  • Designed and implemented a capacity building grant program;
  • Managed a documentary film project and engagement campaign;
  • Managed an arts marketing initiative;
  • Developed and implemented a geographically focused funding strategy;
  • Managed a Trustee discretionary grant program;
  • Administered a grant program in early literacy for Oakland youth;
  • Prepared reports for Foundation Trustees;
  • Analyzed arts grantmaking priorities and trends;
  • Developed collaborative funding initiatives;
  • Served as Co-Chair of the Arts Loan Fund Steering Committee;
  • General administrative duties: website, newsletters, communications.

Trott’s bio on the Rainin Foundation website shares:

Shelley Trott is Director, Arts Strategy & Ventures, for the Kenneth Rainin Foundation. She has devoted her career to the arts, having worked as a dancer and choreographer, teacher, filmmaker, and funder. Shelley joined the Foundation in 2009 as one of its first employees and has played an integral role in the evolution of its three program areas. Shelley leads the foundation’s strategic direction for the arts, supporting experimental and multidisciplinary performances, and creating programs to strengthen the capacity of arts organizations, foster a dynamic learning environment and assist with critical organizational transitions. Shelley was instrumental in establishing the Community Arts Stabilization Trust (CAST), an inventive nonprofit model founded on the belief that the arts promote strong, vibrant, diverse communities. CAST secures permanent affordable space for arts and cultural organizations to facilitate equitable urban transformation. She regularly speaks about the important role the arts play in innovative place-based approaches to improving neighborhoods and communities. In 2014, Shelley was awarded the Council on Foundation’s prestigious Robert Scrivner Award for Creative Grantmaking for her work with CAST. Shelley earned a BA from Wesleyan University and an MFA from California Institute of the Arts. She co-produces the annual Bay Area International Children’s Film Festival and co-chairs the Arts Loan Fund, a collaborative program of Northern California Grantmakers.

Trott won the Council on Foundations’ Robert W. Scrivner Award for Creative Grantmaking in 2014 and has been honored for her work in establishing the Community Arts Stabilization Trust.