Community Needs and Goals


The Phillips is committed to community engagement in Southeast Washington, DC. The museum is working closely with Ward 7 and 8 community organizations and residents to co-create Phillips@THEARC.

Community Advisory Committee

Before developing Phillips@THEARC, the museum conducted an eight-month Phillips@THEARC Community Advisory Committee Initiative to determine needs, goals, and programmatic directions in collaboration with the East of the River community.

The 14-person committee, made up of THEARC partner organizations, East of the River stakeholders, and Phillips staff, discussed community needs, performed asset-mapping, and provided insights on draft goals, preliminary programming, and the architecture and design of the facility. Facilitated by the strategic planning firm Strategy Arts, committee meetings gathered data from the community while cultivating relationships. This initiative has been critical to crafting a strategy and plan for Phillips@THEARC that authentically engages the community as collaborative partners rather than only as potential program participants.

Download the Community Advisory Committee Report


Four strategic goals, for the first three years, emerged from the Phillips@THEARC Community Advisory Committee Initiative:

  • Demonstrate an authentic connection and commitment to East of the River communities, developing relationships with THEARC partners

  • Create an engaging, inviting, and active atmosphere through the architectural and interior design of the Phillips@THEARC spaces

  • Pilot programs in collaboration with THEARC partners that tap into existing community resources

  • Deepen the Phillips’s ongoing school partnerships East of the River, connect these K-12 partnerships to Phillips@THEARC in intentional and innovative ways, seek out new potential K-12 partners in Wards 7, 8.

An ongoing Phillips@THEARC Community Advisory Committee, facilitated by the strategic planning firm Strategy Arts, will monitor Phillips’s progress towards these goals.