Arts Advocacy Awards honor state's creative voices
Arts stakeholders gathered at the University of Delaware Monday night to champion singers, dancers, creative educators and volunteers for the inaugural Arts Advocacy Awards.
According to the Delaware Arts Alliance, the arts generate almost $10 million annually for the First State and account for almost 4,000 jobs.
DAA Executive Director Guillermina Gonzalez said it was time to turn the focus to the people who put pen to paper, words to music and help make the arts possible in Delaware.
"Because the arts play a huge role in the state’s economy, but also in providing meaning to many individuals," Gonzalez said.
The bi-annual awards honor the behind-the-scenes work of people in four categories: volunteerism, education, philanthropy and leadership.
The winners are: James Hartzell in Volunteerism, Joann Browning for Education, John Schoonover in Philanthropy, and Nancy Lynch and Marcia DeWitt in Leadership.
A surprise honor was given at Monday’s ceremony: a lifetime achievement award to Executive Director Emeritus of the First State Ballet Theater Robert Grenfell.
The Arts Advocacy Awards are a partnership between the Delaware Arts Alliance, The Delaware Division of the Arts, The University of Delaware and the Delaware Community Foundation.