Announcing the 28th Annual Mayor’s Arts Awards Winners


The District’s Cultural Community Takes Center Stage at 28th Annual Mayor’s Arts Awards

Honoring the achievements of Washington, DC’s arts, entertainment and creative industries

(Washington, DC) –

The Honorable Mayor Vincent C. Gray and the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities congratulate this year’s winners, honorees and finalists at the 28th Annual Mayor’s Arts Awards held last night at the Warner Theatre. The night was highlighted by the accomplishments of several individuals and organizations. Jane Harman, President of the Harman Family Foundation and Barbara Harman, Executive Director of the Harman Family Foundation, were recognized with the Visionary Leadership Award. Howard University’s Division of Fine Arts received the Lifetime Achievement Award, and Jim Abdo, President and CEO of Abdo Development was presented with the Award for Special Recognition.


The event was marked by special performances by the Washington National Opera, Sharón Clark and Take Dance. Mistress of Ceremonies, Helen Hayes Award-winning actress E. Faye Butler, also provided performances of “Let the Good Times Roll” and “Let’s Go Out Tonight.”


The Mayor’s Arts Award is the highest honor conferred by the District of Columbia in acknowledgement of artistic excellence and service among artists, arts organizations and arts patrons in the city. Winners in eight categories were recognized, demonstrating the wide range of talent the District of Columbia arts community has to offer. Award recipients are Carla Perlo, Miriam’s Kitchen, The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Brian Wilbur Grundstrom, The Phillips Collection, Marta Reid Stewart, Critical Exposure, Topher Kandick, Sarah Pace and Paige Byrne.


“Washington, DC is an international arts and culture destination, and the Mayor’s Arts Awards are a great way to spotlight those who contribute their talents to making the District a great place to live, work and visit,” said Judith Terra, Chair of the D.C. Commission on the arts and Humanities. “Individual artists choose to live and work in the District. The arts are a $1.1 billion industry in the District, supporting almost 15,000 full time equivalent jobs.”

“Our city boasts world class arts, from Howard University, a pillar of the District’s vibrant arts community, to nominees such as The Phillips and the Corcoran with international arts spaces that connect locally,” said Executive Director Lionell Thomas, DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.

This year’s awards were presented in the following categories: Outstanding Service to the Arts, Innovation in the Arts, Outstanding Emerging Artist, Excellence in Artistic Discipline, Outstanding Contribution to Arts Education, and Mayor’s Award for Arts Teaching (Visual, Performing and Language Arts). Finalists were chosen by the Mayor’s Arts Awards Advisory Jury comprised of prominent members of the District’s arts community with expertise in dance, music, theatre, literary arts, visual arts and arts education.
Winners for the 28th Annual Mayor’s Arts Awards:

Outstanding Service to the Arts

  • Carla Perlo


Innovation in the Arts

  • Miriam’s Kitchen
  • The Corcoran Gallery of Art


Outstanding Emerging Artist

  • Brian Wilbur Grundstrom


Excellence in Artistic Discipline

  • The Phillips Collection


 Outstanding Contribution to Arts Education

  • Marta Reid Stewart
  • Critical Exposure


Mayor’s Arts Awards for Teaching-Language Arts

  • Topher Kandick


Mayor’s Arts Awards for Teaching-Performing Arts

  • Sarah Pace


Mayor’s Arts Award for Teaching-Visual Arts

  • Paige Byrne


About the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities

The DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities provides grants, professional opportunities, education enrichment, and other programs and services to individuals and nonprofit organizations in all communities within the District of Columbia. The Arts Commission is supported primarily by District government funds and in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Commissioners | Judith Terra, Chair | Lavinia Wohlfarth, Vice Chair |Marvin Bowser| Susan Clampitt | Christopher Cowan | Edmund C. Fleet | Rhona Wolfe Friedman | Alma H. Gates |Darrin Glymph | James E. Laws, Jr. | Rogelio A. Maxwell | MaryAnn Miller | José Alberto Uclés |Gretchen B. Wharton

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