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GCAC Announces 2013 Community Arts Partnership Individual Award Winners and Business Award Nominees

in Press Releases September 19, 2013 8 min read

Columbus, Ohio – The Greater Columbus Arts Council (GCAC) is pleased to announce the three individual winners of the 2013 Community Arts Partnership Awards presented by PNC in the categories of Arts Educator, Arts Partner and Emerging Arts Leader. The winners will be honored at GCAC’s annual Community Arts Partnership awards program luncheon on Thursday, October 17 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at COSI, 333 W. Broad St.

The community is invited to join GCAC and hundreds of business, arts and civic leaders to celebrate this year’s nominees and winners and the work they do every day to create a thriving and vibrant creative community in Columbus. To register to attend, go to  Registration will close on October 8.

GCAC’s annual Community Arts Partnership Awards honor Columbus individuals for their exemplary support and leadership in the arts and the Columbus business community for its active support of central Ohio’s arts organizations.  Thirty businesses and individuals were nominated this year. Business honorees in the Small, Medium and Large categories will be announced at the event on October 17.

Individual award winners are:

Richard Duarte Brown, master artist with the TRANSIT ARTS Youth Arts Program and the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education’s Art in the House Program, will receive this year’s Arts Educator award.  For more than 20 years, Brown has dedicated his talents to helping young people in Columbus through countless programs including CAPACITY (CAPA’s Youth Arts Program), the Short Stop Youth Center, the King Arts Complex, Ohio Alliance for Arts Education’s (and formerly GCAC’s) Artists-in-Schools program, GCAC’s Children of the Future, Ebony Boys, Art Safe and VSA Ohio. Brown has also worked as a high school art instructor at the Arts and College Preparatory Academy in Columbus. His murals can be seen throughout the city bringing comfort and inspiration to countless viewers. Many of his students have gone on to college and careers in the creative industries and many others have simply become important contributors to the well-being of our community by embracing their responsibilities as parents, audience members, arts consumers  and more.  Brown has the special gift of engaging people from all backgrounds and bringing them together through his creative spirit.  Deeply influenced by Mr. William Steele, his fifth grade teacher, Brown wrote a book in 2012—The Steele Influence—dedicated to Steele’s profound impact on his life. He recently graduated from Ohio Dominican College and received one of the highest awards from the university.  Brown has carried on the gift of an educator who has the power to change a child’s life and inspires young people throughout Columbus to be resourceful and relentless in following their dreams.  Mr. Brown was nominated by Jackie Calderone, director of TRANSIT ARTS, with letters of support from Patricia “GG” Howard, director/founder of the Arts & College Preparatory Academy; Tim Katz, director of Community Arts Education at the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education and Nicholas Hill, professor of art and director of the Frank Museum of Art at Otterbein University.

Dennison (Denny) Griffith, president of the Columbus College of Art & Design (CCAD) since 1998, will receive this year’s Arts Partner award.  For more than 35 years, Griffith has been a tireless cheerleader for the arts in Central Ohio, and for the livability of Columbus, and has long demonstrated the fact that artists often use their creative talents to improve their communities. Griffith is the epitome of the “artist citizen.” Griffith received his MFA at The Ohio State University and has a long history of administrative leadership in the arts, serving as executive director of Ohio Foundation of the Arts, working with dialogue magazine and at the Ohio Arts Council. Griffith also spent 10 years in administrative leadership at Columbus Museum of Art prior to becoming the third appointed president of CCAD. During his tenure Griffith has overseen the doubling of the campus, the installation of the College’s landmark ten-story “ART” sculpture, growth in CCAD’s academic, community outreach and exhibition programs, and the recent launch of CCAD’s MindMarket, which is furthering the creative economy in Columbus by serving as an entrepreneurial business incubator and resource for the creative needs of our local business community. Griffith has also represented CCAD as a partner for the formulation and continued growth of Columbus’s Discovery District. In addition to serving as president of CCAD, Griffith serves on the boards of the Columbus Partnership, Experience Columbus, and the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD), the leading accreditation agency for the art and design field in North America. Alongside his administrative career, Griffith has maintained a vigorous commitment to his work as an artist and has exhibited in more than 90 group and solo exhibitions domestically and abroad and is in the collections of such institutions as the Butler Institute of American Art, the Columbus Museum of Art, the Columbus Metropolitan Library and Huntington Bank. Mr. Griffith was nominated by Laurie Beth Sweeney, vice president for advancement at CCAD, with letters of support from David T. Harrison, president of Columbus State Community College; Brian Ross, president and CEO of Experience Columbus and Alex R. Fischer, president and CEO of the Columbus Partnership.

Erin Hoppe, executive director for VSA Ohio, will receive this year’s Emerging Arts Leader award.  Hoppe began supporting the arts in Central Ohio as a graduate student when she commenced her studies in Arts Policy and Administration at The Ohio State University (OSU). Serving as an active member and eventual president of the Central Ohio Student Arts Advocates (COSAA), Hoppe was involved in the planning and coordination of student involvement in both National Arts Day and Ohio Arts Day. She also interned for the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education and Ohio Citizens for the Arts. For her graduate research, she also worked closely with the Wexner Center for the Arts as a docent and researcher of the docent training program there. Following graduation in 2008, Hoppe became the executive director of VSA Ohio.  Under Hoppe’s leadership, VSA Ohio has solidified itself as a known source for arts education programming as well as resources for artists with disabilities of all ages. With a touring exhibition, growing adaptive classroom residency program and overall thriving reputation, Hoppe’s efforts have directly impacted the arts community statewide as well as the lives and access to opportunities of constituents with disabilities. While serving VSA Ohio’s mission, Hoppe has engaged with partnering organizations like the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education and Ohio Dance to offer unique and interdisciplinary residency experiences to local public schools employing local artists. With a recent commitment to a new project that began in 2012, the ReelAbilities Columbus Disability Film Festival, Hoppe has also engaged with partners across the arts creating a stronger network of arts organizations and bridging the gap between the arts and other areas such as sport and disability, history, deaf culture and the humanities. In addition to her work at VSA Ohio, Hoppe also serves on the board for Citizens for the Arts and was awarded a fellowship through the Jefferson Center for Learning and the Arts’ “The Next Generation: Nonprofit Leaders” Institute. Ms. Hoppe was nominated by Morgan Green, outreach coordinator for VSA Ohio, with letters of support from Liz Celeste, gallery & exhibitions manager at Stanford University and Megan Wood, visitor experience department manager at the Ohio Historical Society.

It’s a great honor to be nominated for the Community Arts Partnership Awards and GCAC is pleased to share the list of additional nominees for this year’s individual award categories and the business award nominees:

Arts Educator
Emily Bailey, nominated by Queena Smith
David   Brown, nominated by Susan Steinman
Katherine Matthews, nominated by Meg Brown
Candace Mazur Darman, nominated by Donna Collins
Becky Ogden, nominated by Jeani Stahler
Paul Richmond, nominated by Susan Adami
Patricia Santanello, nominated by Stephanie Prince
Diana Zamrazil VanBruggen, nominated by Kylie Miles

Arts Partner
Anne Melvin, nominated by William Conner
Katharine Moore, nominated by Karen Simonian and Jennifer Poleon

Emerging Arts Leader
Heather Garner, nominated by Nancy Ferguson – Mayor of City of New Albany
Lynette Shy, nominated by Jared Shy
Christopher Sunami, nominated by Janet George

Large Business
Battelle, nominated by Wexner Center for the Arts
Cardinal Health, nominated by Women In Music Columbus and Asian Festival Corp.
Limited Brands, nominated by CAPA
State Auto Insurance, nominated by ProMusica Chamber Orchestra

Medium Business
Coldwell Banker King Thompson, nominated by Jazz Arts Group
Hilton Columbus Downtown, nominated by Short North Alliance
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, nominated by Wexner Center for the Arts

Small Business
Bello Giardino LLC, nominated by Grandview Marble/Cliff Arts Council
Compton Construction, nominated by Integrated Leadership Systems
Keith Cheeseman’s Service Center, nominated by Columbus Civic Theater
Short North Alliance, nominated by PM Gallery

In addition to announcing the business award winners at the October 17 luncheon, GCAC will also present its Artistic Excellence Award—a $10,000 prize given annually to an arts organization that has demonstrated innovation, risk and artistic excellence in a performance, exhibition or program.

The 2013 Artistic Excellence nominee finalists are: The Harmony Project for One Week, One Neighborhood; Columbus Dance Theatre for Cleopatra; Columbus Children’s Theatre for Sensory Friendly Performances Children’s Theatre Series; Franklin Park Conservatory for Sacrifice + Bliss: Aurora Robson; the Short North Stage for the Garden Theatre Restoration; and the Wexner Center for Annie Leibovitz.

The GCAC Board’s Community Arts Partnership committee selects the individual and business winners each year. GCAC’s Board of Trustees meets just prior to the Community Arts Partnership awards luncheon to select the Artistic Excellence Award winner.

The 2013 Community Arts Partnership Awards are presented by PNC. Media sponsors include CityScene Magazine and WOSU. Awards sponsor is American Electric Power.  Patron sponsors to date are Crabbe, Brown & James, LLP; Ice Miller LLP; Ologie; Porter, Wright, Morris and Arthur; and Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP.

About the Greater Columbus Arts Council: Through vision and leadership, advocacy and collaboration, the Greater Columbus Arts Council supports art and advances the culture of the region. A catalyst for excellence and innovation, we fund exemplary artists and arts organizations and provide programs, events and services of public value that educate and engage all audiences in our community. GCAC thanks the City of Columbus, Franklin County and the Ohio Arts Council for their continued support.

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CONTACT: Jami Goldstein
(614) 221-8492