On June 26th Valley Cultural Foundation dedicated its bandshell on the Lou Bredlow Pavilion at Warner Ranch Park to a very special lady, Nora Ross. This special dedication was made possible thanks to Councilmember Bob Blumenfield and his efforts throughout city council.
Nora Ross was a powerhouse of personality and a dedicated community leader who always put others in the spotlight. Her focus on helping performing artists and businesses in the community made her a unique and outstanding individual.
Nora joined the Valley Cultural Foundation in 2013. Her work was rooted in providing the community with live entertainment programs and events in the arts, which included the free concerts at Warner Park Pavilion. In 2017, she helped expand programs like Movies in the Park, and set her sights on creating a new Emerging Artist Showcase. Other programs extended to NoHo Summer Nights at the North Hollywood Recreation Center, Rock the Valley – Battle of the Bands, creating Emerging Artist albums, and Music on the Move 5K Run/Walk to support children’s programs, providing School Art program grants. She even started a podcast series known as Arts on the Move. In 2019, Nora was promoted as Chief Executive Officer for the organization.
During the pandemic when all live events were cancelled, instead of retreating into a safe cocoon, she boldly pivoted and started Concerts on the Couch. The series featured emerging artists performing video concerts online. This would also include a virtual Rock the Valley – Battle of the Bands program. She even turned large parking lots into drive-up movie nights so families and loved ones could get out and do something fun from the safety of their cars.
Behind the scenes, Nora battled cancer on and off for years, yet she continued to create and implement budgets to include fundraising for public and private grants to support the organization. She worked hard to develop corporate sponsorships by identifying, cultivating, retaining, and acknowledging donors.
Nora also worked closely with local, state, and federal offices on issues relevant to the business community, culture, and the arts. She also developed relationships with community leaders and political officials and staff that included city councilmembers, the Mayor of Los Angeles, County Supervisors, State Assembly members, State Senators, and U.S. Congressional representatives.
A big proponent of encouraging a diverse audience to come together and be part of an experience, she wanted that experience to extend to an open and welcoming environment for staff and board members as well. It was her firm belief that the makeup of the organization should reflect the community it serves.
Now we get honor Nora Ross by naming the bandshell after this extraordinary woman who gave so much to her community.