Skip to main content

Greater Columbus Arts Council Announces 2019 Community Arts Partnership Individual Award Winners and Employer Award Nominees

in Press Releases September 19, 2019 3 min read

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Greater Columbus Arts Council (Arts Council) is pleased to announce the three individual winners of the 2019 Community Arts Partnership (CAP) awards presented by PNC in the categories of Arts Educator, Arts Partner and Emerging Arts Leader. The winners will be honored at the Arts Council’s annual Community Arts Partnership awards luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 31 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center’s Short North Ballroom.

The Arts Council’s annual CAP awards honor Columbus individuals for their exemplary support and leadership in the arts and Columbus employers for their active support of central Ohio’s arts organizations. Nineteen employers and individuals were nominated this year. Employer honorees will be announced at the event on Oct. 31.

Individual winners will each receive an original piece created by Columbus artist Celeste Malvar-Stewart. The employer winners will each receive a work of art purchased from local artists Edmund Boateng, Jacci Delaney and Said Oladejo-Law.

The individual award winners are listed below. The Arts Educator Award is presented in partnership with the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education.

Aziza and Tony West have shared their passion for African culture through artist residencies, dance and drum performances, workshops, teacher in-services and professional development programs over the past 37 years. They have collaborated with numerous organizations across the city, and reached countless children through the Ohio Alliance for Arts Education Artists in Schools Program. Aziza and Tony West were nominated by Suzan Bradford Kounta.

Columbus City Council President Shannon Hardin is known for his view on public policy, saying, “If it’s not for all, then it’s not for us.” Council President Hardin recently helped bring together the diverse interests in the City of Columbus to create a dedicated funding solution for the arts, and cultural sustainability in Columbus. Shannon Hardin was nominated by Larry James.

Betsy Pandora has served as executive director of the Short North Alliance since 2013. Under her leadership, the Short North has seen over $40 million dollars in public infrastructure investments and attracted over $500 million dollars in private development investment, all while maintaining the district’s orientation around arts and culture. Betsy Pandora was nominated by Amy Tillinghast.

It is an honor to be nominated for the Community Arts Partnership Awards and the Arts Council would like to congratulate the employer award nominees and all nominees in the individual categories:

Small Employer
Ahlum & Arbor Tree Preservation
Irvin Public Relations

Medium Employer
Graduate Hotel
Orange Barrel Media

Large Employer
State Auto Insurance Companies

Arts Educator
Zach Compston
Bettye Stull
*Aziza and Tony West

Michael B. Coleman Arts Partner
Hayley Greenwald-Deeter
*Shannon Hardin
Jack and Zoe Johnstone
Michael Reese
Alicia Vanderelli

Emerging Art Leader
Orlay Alonso
Edward Carignan
Jessica Joseph
*Betsy Pandora

*indicates winner

The Arts Council will also present its Columbus Makes Art Excellence Awards sponsored by Engie and L Brands Foundation at the Oct. 31 luncheon. The awards will be presented to two arts organizations that have demonstrated innovation, risk and artistic excellence in a performance, exhibition or program.

Small (organizations with budgets of under $1 million)
Columbus Gay Men’s Chorus, Stonewall 50
Columbus Modern Dance Company, Martha Graham at Generations of Art: The Sunami Family Exhibition
Mark Lomax, 400: An Afrikan Epic
Momentum, The Harlem Renaissance
What? Music and Arts Festival

Large (organizations with budgets of $1 million and over)
Columbus Museum of Art, I, Too, Sing America: The Harlem Renaissance at 100
COSI, COSI Science Festival
Opera Columbus and ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, The Flood

The Arts Council’s board of trustees selects the individual and employer winners each year. The board of trustees meets prior to the Community Arts Partnership awards luncheon to choose the Columbus Makes Art Award Excellence winners.

The community is invited to join the Arts Council 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 here.

The 2019 Community Arts Partnership Awards are presented by PNC. Columbus Makes Art Excellence Award sponsors are Engie and L Brands Foundation. Patron sponsors include Cardinal Health; Corna Kokosing; Crabbe, Brown & James LLP;  Crane Group; Easton Town Center; Grange Insurance; Ice Miller, Nationwide; Robert Weiler Company; thinkCSC; and Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease. Media sponsors include CityScene Magazine and WOSU Public Media. Tickets to attend are available online at

Mission of the Greater Columbus Arts Council: To support and advance the arts and cultural fabric of Columbus.

# # #

CONTACT: Jami Goldstein
(614) 221-8492