Governor's Arts and Heritage Awards - Honorees Announced

The Schack Art Center of Everett, Evergreen State College Longhouse are among the six recipients of the 2014 Governor's Arts and Heritage Award

Olympia, WA - August 20, 2014 - The Washington State Arts Commission (ArtsWA) and Governor Jay Inslee congratulate the recipients of the 2014 Governor's Arts and Heritage Awards. The awards are given to outstanding individuals and organizations that have contributed significantly to the arts and cultural traditions of Washington State. This year a new category was added to recognize the work of a young Washington arts leader. The 2014 honorees are:

Arts Organization Award - Arts Council of Snohomish County (The Schack Art Center), Everett
Arts Organization Leadership Award - Speight Jenkins (Seattle Opera), Seattle
Heritage Individual Award - Johnpaul Jones, Bainbridge Island
Heritage Organization Award - The Evergreen State College Longhouse Education and Cultural Center, Olympia
Individual Artist Award - Norie Sato, Seattle
Young Arts Leadership Award - Earl Davis, Shoalwater Bay Tribe, Tokeland

"This year's Governor's Arts and Heritage Awards recognize four individuals and two organizations for their extraordinary contributions to Washington's cultural heritage," said Gov. Jay Inslee. "A strong arts and culture sector contributes to vibrant communities, excellent education and a prosperous economy, and is one of the many reasons why people love this state."

Thirty-nine nominations were received and scored by the Governor's Arts and Heritage Nominations Review Panel. Its recommendations were approved by the ArtsWA board and forwarded to the Governor for his final approval.

"Mark your calendar for a very special evening October 28th at Teatro ZinZanni to honor and recognize the 2014 awardees," said Karen Hanan, ArtsWA Executive Director. "Modestly-priced tickets to the public will be available, which will include a Teatro ZinZanni show specifically produced for the Governor's Arts and Heritage Awards."

More information on the event will be posted to the ArtsWA website and social media pages in mid-September or contact ArtsWA Communications Manager, Glenda Carino at 360-586-6093 or

Biographies of Honorees

Arts Council of Snohomish County (The Schack Art Center), Everett
Arts Organization Award

The 40 year old organization has been operating since 2011 as the Schack Art Center, and is the primary visual arts education center in the North Puget Sound region. Its dozens of annual programs fall into three broad categories: gallery exhibits and festival-style art events attracting young people, artist support services, and arts education. The Center features seven admission-free, professional exhibits a year; over the past 40 years the gallery has drawn some of the major artists of our time in additional to regional favorites. Dale Chihuly's work was brought to the Schack; Alfredo Arreguin was featured in a major retrospective, and an exhibit based on photorealist painter and Everett native Chuck Close is planned within the next two years. Exhibits have been based on themes as varied as multi-cultural masks, recycling, book arts and Northwest Coast Native Americans.


Norie Sato, Seattle - Individual Artist Award

Ms. Sato's artistic accomplishments and commitment to service to art and collaboration, have been instrumental in cementing Seattle and the state of Washington's reputation as a stronghold in the national field of public art. She has a long history of being an activist for contemporary, media and performance art, and was a staff member in the 1970s at the seminal "and/or" Gallery, an artist-managed space. She was also a founding board member of Seattle's Center on Contemporary Art, and instrumental in the development of 911 Media Arts. For the past 25 years, she has focused her own practice on art in public places, working on individual, collaborative, design teams; and planning projects in both sculpture and two-dimensional work, including glass, metal terrazzo, and in site-integrated design such as those at international airports in San Diego, San Francisco, and Miami. Her works at campuses include those at Iowa State University's Hach Chemistry Building and the University of Wisconsin at Madison's new Biochemistry Building. In addition to projects around the country, Ms. Sato is represented by seven artworks in ArtsWA's State Art Collection, including five site-responsive, commissioned artworks located from Spokane to Vancouver.


Speight Jenkins, Seattle Opera, Seattle - Arts Organization Leadership Award

As General Director of the Seattle Opera, Speight Jenkins will leave an indelible mark on the opera community locally and nationally for generations to come. He is retiring after 31 years. His expert leadership and renowned depth of opera knowledge, which he has shared widely, have earned him recognition for his high caliber productions, notably Richard Wagner's opera cycle "Der Ring des Nibelungen," drawing visitors from all 50 states as well as 19 countries. Mr. Jenkins' work at Seattle Opera is credited for boosting tourism in the Seattle/Tacoma region and on a broader level, reinforced our state's profile as a thriving center for excellent arts productions.


The Evergreen State College Longhouse Education and Cultural Center, Olympia - Heritage Organization Award

The 20 year old Longhouse has made broad and lasting impacts in both contemporary and traditional Native arts and cultures throughout our state, across the nation, and in many places around the Pacific Rim. As an organization dedicated to indigenous arts and culture, the Longhouse's excellent work encompasses education, cultural preservation, creative expression, and economic development. It has hosted thousands of indigenous artists from across the globe for workshops; convened regional, national, and international stakeholders to foster and promote Native artistic expression; facilitated the marketing and sales of indigenous works; and gathered Native peoples from Washington, the greater United States, and the Pacific Rim to learn from one another's cultural practices, values and traditions.


Johnpaul Jones, Bainbridge Island - Heritage Individual Award

Johnpaul Jones' lifetime career as an artist and architect has brought prestige and honor to the state of Washington. Of Choctaw and Cherokee heritage, his award-winning work has enhanced the landscape and architectural structures throughout the state. This year, President Obama honored him with the 2013 National Humanities Medal. As a principal of the Jones & Jones Architecture and Landscape Architecture firm in Seattle, he was lead architect for the National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) on the Smithsonian Mall in Washington, D.C., celebrated for its unique architectural style. Mr. Jones is known nationally for incorporating Native American traditions into his architecture, which was why the Confluence Project asked him to consult on its award winning Land Bridge in 2002 and with Maya Lin at Sacajawea State Park. Mr. Jones' designs include the Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort in Leavenworth--one of the American Institute of Architects' Top Ten Green Projects in 2001; the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Internment Memorial; and The Longhouse at The Evergreen State College--a center for celebration of indigenous contemporary art and traditional culture.


Earl Davis, Shoalwater Bay Tribe, Tokeland - Young Arts Leadership Award

Earl Davis manages the Shoalwater Bay Carving Apprenticeship Program for the Shoalwater Bay Tribe. The program was created by the tribe's artists to expand the number of carvers who work in the artistic style historically known to the lower Columbia River, Willapa Bay, and Grays Harbor watershed areas. With a federal grant from the Administration for Native Americans, this 32 year-old arts leader and carver led the program instructors and apprentices on a learning journey to visit collections throughout the United States. They studied older pieces that included carved house posts, canoes, bowls, ladles, and spirit figures. Inspired by these ancestral works, the group then began to apply what they had learned to create new pieces reflective of the older carving styles of their region. Mr. Davis' important work revitalizes the Southwest Coastal arts in a rural remote area of Washington State. He has worked in his tribe's heritage department for seven years. The Apprenticeship Program has been featured in carving exhibitions and media articles.


Governor's Arts & Heritage Awards - Past Honorees

About the Governor's Arts and Heritage Awards

The Awards were established in 1966 to recognize individuals and artists for their significant contributions to the creative vitality of Washington State. Since inception of the program, 150 individuals and organizations have received Arts Awards, and 51 individuals and organizations have been honored with a Heritage Award.

To be eligible for either the Arts or Heritage Awards, individuals or organizations must be current Washington residents or have resided in the state during the time the contributions were made, and not be a previous recipient of a Governor’s Arts Award or Heritage Award.

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