Do you know a Coloradan who has made significant and unique contributions as an Artist, through Community Service in the Arts, or at the intersection of Arts and Society?

“The Annual Awards Program celebrates those leaders who have made a profound impact on our State’s vital arts and culture landscape,” says Gary Steuer, Bonfils-Stanton Foundation’s President and CEO. “From influencing arts, culture, and the community through achievement as an artist, by making extraordinary contributions to the arts through community leadership, or by fostering a positive social change through the arts, our Annual Awards strive to recognize those making a difference.”

Deadline to submit nominations is Friday, November 30, 2018.

We seek nominations in these three categories:

Artist Award

This award includes those who have achieved major accomplishments or made significant contributions in one or more art forms such as music, theater, dance, fine arts, media, or literature. Bonfils-Stanton Foundation’s current focus is to recognize practicing Colorado artists whose virtuosity and professional accomplishments have achieved national/international distinction AND/OR those whose participation in the arts has made a tremendous impact on the arts community in which they live.

The 2018 Honoree was Carlos Frésquez, a dedicated artist and educator who has spent his career offering unique perspectives on culture in Denver and the Chicano community through various art forms. 

Community Service in the Arts Award

This award includes those who are active participants and respected leaders in the community who have made extraordinary contributions to the field of arts and culture over an extended time. Its focus is on leaders, professionals and patrons that may provide financial support, but also make a significant statement with their time and talent. Examples include: Arts advocates, philanthropists, patrons, trustees, and leaders of nonprofit arts organizations.

Arlene and Barry Hirschfeld received the 2018 Award as Denver’s dynamic duo who share a long and unwavering commitment to support arts and culture through their generous philanthropy and dedicated volunteer leadership.

Arts and Society Award

This award recognizes an individual who exemplifies accomplishment in the integration of the arts into addressing a non-arts community/societal challenge. This could include health and wellness, science, the environment, poverty, youth, accessibility, immigration, etc., and could encompass either directly using the arts to address a challenge in another sector of society or using the arts to illuminate or educate around the issue. As with our other awards, priority will be given to honor an individual leader whose contributions have been sustained over time and have been at a high level of impact, quality and influence. In special circumstances, an organization or program may be considered.

The 2018 Honoree was Susan Jenson, executive director or Downtown Aurora Visual Arts who has passionately dedicated her career to engaging the community and transforming the lives of youth through her commitment to the arts. 

The nomination process includes submitting nominee information and a nomination statement through an online portal. We ask that nomination statements address award criteria specific to each category as well as the nominee’s fit within these characteristics:

  • In what ways have the nominee’s accomplishments made a lasting difference in the quality of life for Coloradans? Has the benefit been widespread—both in numbers and scope? Is the community/the state/the field of practice positioned differently because of the nominee’s contributions?
  • What about the nominee’s contributions are distinguishable? When compared with others of similar means, talents, etc., are this nominee’s accomplishments unique?
  • How would the selection of this nominee contribute to Bonfils-Stanton Foundation’s goal of motivating others to similar accomplishments? Would their contributions be worthy of emulation? Have their accomplishments helped shine a light on Colorado as a place of creativity and inspiration?

Honorees will receive $35,000 and meaningful recognition for their accomplishments at our Annual Awards Celebration in 2019.

Ready, Set, NOMINATE – Go here to submit your nominations. Remember, the deadline to submit is November 30 at 5 p.m.

Questions? Feel free to email Monique Loseke at