Biden taps Gaga, Clooney, Garner, others for arts committee

WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House on Thursday announced a star-studded slate of members for the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, a panel of artists, museum professionals, academics and philanthropists that serves as an advisory board to President Joe Biden on culture issues.

The group will be co-chaired by Bruce Cohen, an Academy Award-winning producer known for films such as “American Beauty” and “Silver Linings Playbook,” and pop megastar and Grammy Award winner Lady Gaga, also known as Stefani Germanotta, according to the White House.

Others tapped to the committee include musician Jon Batiste, who performed at the White House state dinner in honor of French President Emmanuel Macron in December, television producer Shonda Rhimes, Grammy Award winner Joe Walsh, and actors George Clooney, Jennifer Garner, Troy Kotsur and Kerry Washington. It also includes one former member of Congress: Democrat Steve Israel, who represented New York in the House.

Tsione Wolde-Michael, the committee’s executive director, says it is “positioned to do meaningful work that will positively impact the arts, libraries, museums, and public humanities work in communities across the country.”

Many of the members appointed to the arts and humanities committee have previously partnered with Biden on key issues, such as Gaga on the “It’s On Us” campaign to battle sexual assault on college campuses. Veteran television producer Marta Kauffman, who was also selected for the committee, hosted first lady Jill Biden at her home for a fundraiser in September.

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