OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Arts Council recently selected two Pawhuskans — Bruce Carter and Addie Roanhorse — to participate in its 2017 Leadership Arts program.

The local pair were among 33 individuals from 18 cities and towns across the state who were chosen for the program. During four two-day sessions this spring, participants will learn how to advance their communities through the arts and arts education.

Pawhuska will be host city for the program’s third session, which is scheduled for Wednesday and Thursday, April 26-27.

Members of the 2017 class will join more than 280 individuals from 80 communities statewide who have participated in the program since it began in 2008.

“This is our 10th Leadership Arts class, representing a milestone for our agency,” said Oklahoma Arts Council Executive Director Amber Sharples.

“Leadership Arts and our statewide Oklahoma Arts Conference were established because, as the state’s arts agency, we recognized the opportunity to lead in building Oklahoma’s cultural infrastructure,” Sharples said. “Ten years later, through these programs and others, we are positioned to continue to help meet vital needs within our state.”

Carter operates the Tallgrass Art Gallery. Roanhorse will be representing the Osage Nation.

Also selected to participate in this year’s program were: Sarah Wright, from Tulsa’s Gilcrease Museum; Scott Ambler, of Bartlesville’s Price Tower Arts Center; Sandra Kent from Oklahoma A+ Schools in Bartlesville, and Dedra Morgan of the Bartlesville Art Association. Three communities — Broken Bow, Sapulpa, and Stroud — will have first-time representatives in the program, OAC officials said.

Other class sessions are to take place at the Chickasaw Conference and Retreat Center in Sulphur (Feb. 22-23), Lawton (March 22-23) and Tulsa (May 24-25). The 2017 Class will graduate during the 2017 Oklahoma Arts Conference in Enid on Oct. 25-26.

Through the Leadership Arts program, individuals receive in-depth training and strategies for using arts and cultural resources to strengthen local economies, improve education and enhance quality of life. Program members participate in panel discussions, group activities, hands-on learning, and tours of community art spaces.

Oklahoma Arts Council is the official state agency for the support and development of the arts. The agency’s mission is to lead in the advancement of the state’s thriving arts industry. Its nationally-recognized leadership program is sponsored by the Oklahoma Arts Council and funded, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts.

It annually provides approximately 450 grants to nearly 250 organizations statewide, organizes professional development opportunities for the state’s arts and cultural industry, and manages works of art in Oklahoma Public Art Collection and the public spaces of the state Capitol. Additional information is available at arts.ok.gov.