“Welcome newly appointed members of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, led by @BruceCohen83 and @ladygaga!” a Twitter account for the group wrote Thursday, using the pair’s handles on the platform. “We look forward to partnering to positively impact the arts, libraries, museums, and humanities work across the country.”
The committee, founded by former President Ronald Reagan in 1982, includes “prominent artists, scholars, and philanthropists” who advise “the President and the heads of U.S. cultural agencies on policy, philanthropic and private sector engagement, and other efforts to enhance federal support for the arts, humanities, and museum and library services,” the White House explained in a statement.
In 2017, members of the advisory group resigned en masse after then-President Donald Trump said there were “very fine people on both sides” of a white supremacist rally and anti-racist counterprotest in Charlottesville, Virginia, where civil rights activist Heather Heyer was killed.
Trump’s administration responded at the time by saying it would not renew the executive order for the committee ahead of its scheduled expiration that year, but Biden signed an order in September 2022 to reestablish the group.
Gaga, whose legal name is Stefani Germanotta, reacted to this week’s announcement with a simple “Thank you” on social media. The Grammy Award winner, who has taken up acting in recent years, wrapped filming on Todd Phillips’ upcoming “Joker” sequel earlier this month.
A committed Democratic supporter, Gaga issued a celebratory tweet after Biden and now-Vice President Kamala Harris won the 2020 election, praising their “kindness and bravery.” She also performed “The Star-Spangled Banner” at Biden’s inauguration ceremony in 2021.
Gaga and Cohen, who produced movies such as “American Beauty” and “Silver Linings Playbook,” will be joined on the Arts and Humanities Committee by fellow entertainment industry professionals such as musician Jon Batiste and screenwriter Shonda Rhimes, as well as actors George Clooney, Kerry Washington, Troy Kotsur and Jennifer Garner.