Governor Kate Brown Announces 2020 Governor’s Arts Awards

(Traditional American Indian storyteller Esther Stutzman, a 2017 Governor’s Arts Award recipient. | Photo Courtesy of Oregon Arts Commission)

In celebration of the uplifting power of art and its value to Oregonians’ quality of life, Governor Kate Brown announced a call for nominations for the 2020 Governor’s Arts Awards. Established in 1977, the awards are held periodically as funding allows. A call for 2020 nominations is now posted on the Arts Commission website.

A partnership between the Office of the Governor and the Arts Commission, the Governor’s Arts Awards recognize and honor individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the arts in Oregon. Awardees will be honored during an evening Governor’s Arts Awards ceremony on Saturday, September 12, at the Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg. Note: If social distancing prevents a public gathering, the event will be produced as a live-streamed Facebook event by Artslandia.

The 2020 Governor’s Arts Awards are funded in part by The Harold & Arlene Schnitzer CARE Foundation with generous event support from the Chehalem Cultural Center.

“Art is a fundamental ingredient of any thriving and vibrant community,” Governor Brown said. “Art sparks connections between people, movements and new ideas. To put it simply, art makes life better. I am thrilled to celebrate Oregon’s best artists and art supporters through the Governor’s Arts Awards.”

The Governor’s Arts Awards are open to any individual, organization or community that currently resides in or has a significant presence in Oregon and has made outstanding contributions to the arts in the state. The 148 past recipients of a Governor’s Arts Award are not eligible (see past recipients).

“The Governor’s Arts Award is the most prestigious honor an Oregon artist can receive,” said Arts Commission Chair Anne Taylor. “We are extremely grateful to Governor Brown for her commitment to formally recognizing the contribution of Oregon artists and arts supporters to our collective quality of life.”

Nominations will be reviewed by a committee composed of a representative from the Governor’s Office, an Arts Commissioner and three to five arts leaders from across the state. They will recommend three to five awards based on the nominee’s regional, national or international recognition for his/her/their contributions; role in improving the quality of arts experiences and appreciation for the arts in Oregon; contributions to advancing the arts’ positive impact on Oregonians’ quality of life; and length of service to the arts in Oregon. Governor Brown will have final approval of award recipients.

Nominations must be received by 5pm on Tuesday, May 26. Recipients will be notified by July 13 and must be available to participate in the September 12 award ceremony (in person or virtually). The ceremony will be free and open to the public.

The last Governor’s Arts Awards were held in 2017 as part of the celebration of the Arts Commission’s 50th Anniversary.

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