Arts & Business Council of Chicago

In a city known for commerce and industry, the Arts & Business Council of Chicago (A&BC) believes there is a renewable resource with limitless economic and social potential: CREATIVITY.

It acts as a spark for opportunity in practical, human, and entertaining ways. We champion the creative workers and creative enterprises who ignite that spark.

Our goal: To empower Chicagoans with the tools they need to prosper and, in turn, increase the economic strength, richness, and vitality of their communities. Through programs, services, and extraordinary partnerships, A&BC is building a stronger, more equitable, more prosperous Chicago.


  • Empowering creative and cultural organizations & enterprises with the business acumen and core competencies needed for them to succeed.
  • Cultivating business and executive volunteers to provide high-quality management & leadership consulting and engaging local and national content experts to lead “skill-build” seminars.
  • Strengthening the relationship between the creative and corporate sectors.
  • Connecting people and engaging all 77 of the city’s community areas; and
  • Promoting a social and economic future where creativity, vitality, and racial equity are enjoyed by all Chicagoans.

We create these outcomes through our fl­agship programs:

  • Business Volunteers for the Arts® (BVA), a pro bono consulting program connecting skilled Chicagoans with arts, cultural, and creative communities in need of operational and management assistance
  • Learning Labs, professional development workshops to enhance management and leadership core competencies
  • smARTscope®, a proprietary diagnostic tool that assesses the management core competencies of creative enterprises
  • A&BC Annexes, community engagement opportunities offered through neighborhood partnerships