GAHA Nomination deadline extended to July 13th, 5 p.m.

A posthumous 2017 Governor's Heritage Award was presented to Master of Hawaiian Arts, Deva Yamashiro. Kaloku Holt and Keawe Holt accepted the award on behalf of their mother.


We're accepting nominations from across Washington State. Categories include awards for Individual Artist, Arts Organization, Arts Education, Young Arts Leader, Arts Legacy, Arts Advocacy, Philanthropy Award, Community Award, Individual Heritage Award, and Heritage Organization Award. 
See categories and criteria for GAHA.

"Each of the 2018 honorees will be recognized for their unique contributions and will join a distinguished group of honorees spanning more than fifty years," said Karen Hanan, ArtsWA Executive Director. 

The very first Governor's Arts Award was given in 1966 to PONCHO--Patrons of Northwest Civic, Cultural, and Charitable Organizations--a non-profit organization that originally formed to help the Seattle Symphony. Over the years PONCHO was a major booster of many Seattle arts organizations including the Seattle Opera, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Seattle Repertory Theatre. Other past Governor's Arts Award honorees have included artist luminaries such as Mark Tobey (1970), Jacob Lawrence (1984), George Tsutakawa (1985), Ramona Solberg (1987), Paul Horiuchi (1988), Norie Sato (2014), and Barbara Earl Thomas (2016) to name a few. 

Large and small arts organizations from across the state have been honored as well. Among them the Seattle Opera Association (1970), Spokane Symphony Society (1973), Allied Arts Association of Richland (1975), Artists Unlimited of Lynnwood (1986), Victory Music of Bonney Lake (1988), The Boeing Company (1992), Museum of Northwest Art in LaConner (1999), the Schack Arts Center of Everett (2014), and the Seattle Art Museum (2017). 

The Heritage Award was added in 1989 to honor outstanding individuals and organizations for their work preserving and promoting Washington's diverse traditions and cultural heritage. These honorees included Fred Cordova, a Filipino-American historian (1991); Palmer Johnson, an African-American jazz pianist (1994); Wing Luke Museum (1997); Mariachi Huenachi (2000); The Evergreen State College Longhouse Education and Cultural Center (2014); and Deva Leinani Aiko Yamashiro (2017), among many others.

See the full list of past GAHA honorees.

This year the selected honorees will be recognized at an awards dinner on November 27th to be held at the historic Admiral Theatre in Bremerton. Honorees, their families and friends, and the public are invited to attend. More information on the event will be coming soon!

Click here to make a nomination.

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