Artists Annie Lopez of Phoenix, Susan Gamble of Tucson and Joseph Maniglia of Flagstaff received individual awards at the 2016 Governor’s Arts Awards at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel.

The Museum of Northern Arizona won the Community Award and Canyon Records and APS took home the small and large businesses of the year awards respectively.

In addition, Release the Fear was the Arts in Education – Organization honoree.

More than 600 arts supporters, artists, advocates and business leaders were on hand for the presentation of awards and video remarks by Arizona Governor Doug Ducey.

Seventy-seven nominations were submitted from 26 Arizona communities in seven categories for this year’s awards. Sponsors were:  APS, Nominees Sponsor; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, Arts Entertainment & Video Sponsor; SRP – Evening Program Sponsor; Arizona Lottery – Artist Award Sponsor.

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Annie Lopez, Phoenix, Artist Award

The 2016 Governor’s Arts Awards were presented to:

  • Annie Lopez, Phoenix, Artist Award
  • Susan Gamble, Tucson, Individual Award
  • Joseph Maniglia, Flagstaff, Arts In Education Individual Award
  • Release the Fear, Phoenix, Arts in Education Organization Award
  • Museum of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, Community Award
  • APS, Large Business Award
  • Canyon Records, Phoenix, Small Business Award

Also during the evening, the 11th annual Shelley Award was presented to the Childsplay founder and Artistic Director David Saar.

Each honoree received specially created awards by Arizona artists Christine Cassano, Phoenix; Merlin Cohen, Tucson; Christopher Colville, Phoenix; Evelyn Fredericks, Hopi Nation; Jan Marshall, Prescott; Hallie Mueller, Phoenix; Mark Pomilio, Phoenix; and Mary Shindell, Phoenix.  A digital print by Prescott photographer Aurora Berger, Mile Zero, appeared on the cover of the Governor’s Arts Awards program and on event collateral.

The 2016 Governor’s Arts Awards honorees:

Artist Award: Annie Lopez (Phoenix):  Phoenix native Annie Lopez is influenced by family and personal experiences. Since 1983, she has exhibited her work nationally, including: “Paper!” at the Phoenix Art Museum; “ American Voices” at the Smithsonian Institution; “The Show” at the Museum of Fine Arts in Santa Fe and “In Celebration: A Century of Arizona Women Artists” which traveled through out Arizona. She has been given solo exhibits at the Phoenix Art Museum, University of Arizona, Arizona State University and MARS Artspace. She has served on the board of Artlink, the Phoenix Arts and Culture Commission and, for 17 years, was an artist member with MARS (Movimiento Artistico del Rio Salado).

Individual Award: Susan Gamble (Tucson): Susan Gamble has provided more than 35 years of tireless devotion to the arts in Arizona. A mosaic artist whose career began with a public art commission for the Tucson International Airport in 1987, her love of art and commitment to education have prompted her to form, lead and participate in many community service groups.  She started as a docent at Tucson Museum of Art and was a member of the inaugural board of the former Tucson Arts District Partnership, Inc.; a founding board member of the Downtown Tucson Partnership; and past president of the Warehouse Arts Management Organization. She was recently appointed to the Tucson Pima Arts Council.

Arts In Education Individual Award: Joseph Maniglia (Flagstaff): Joseph Maniglia caught the acting bug at an early age, organizing family children in a talent show or performance during holidays and family gatherings.  After moving from Chicago to Flagstaff, he founded Theatrikos Theatre Company for which he still serves as Education Director along with responsibilities as adjunct instructor at Coconino Community College and as a relief Chaplain at Flagstaff Medical Center. Not afraid to break new ground, he challenges students with not only performing the classics, but understanding their impact by putting them into modern settings that address contemporary social issues.

Arts in Education Organization Award: Release the Fear (Phoenix): Release the Fear art space displays artwork created by disadvantaged and troubled youth participating in Robert Miley’s workshops. At the end of each 3-day workshop, 15-20 kids together design and paint one 30×30 canvas drawing from their program experience. This healing experience for the group also serves as a community awareness campaign sharing a message of decreased violence of all types. These group masterpieces are a metaphor for what we can create as a community and express accentuating rather than desecrating. Miley holds various events at this space during the year.

Community Award: Museum of Northern Arizona (Flagstaff): Founded in 1928, the Museum of Nothern Arizona (MNA) is one of the nation’s most significant regional museums and winner of the 2015 Natonal Medal for Museum and Library Science.  The founders’ vision was to create a research, collections and education center for advancing the arts and natural sciences of the Colorado River Plateau region in a forward-thinking world class museum.  Each year, nearly 45,000 people visit the 9 exhibit galleries and participate in vibrant programs. MNA is the primary location for collections from the Colorado Plateau with more than 250,000 artifacts.

Large Business Award: Arizona Public Service (APS): Founded 5 years after Tombstone’s gunfight at the OK Corral and nearly a quarter century before Arizona became a state, Arizona Public Service (APS) is the state’s largest and longest-serving electric company with more than 1.2 million retail and residential customers in 11 counties.  In addition to generating safe, affordable and reliable electricity, in 2015, through its shareholders, APS donated $9.8 million to Arizona charitable programs, including nearly $900,000 to arts and cultural organizations. Included among the recipients are the Herberger Theater, Phoenix Symphony, ASU Gammage, music festivals in Flagstaff and Prescott, Phoenix Art Museum and the Celebration of Art at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

Small Business Award: Canyon Records (Phoenix): Canyon Records is one of the oldest independent record labels in the music industry and one of Arizona’s longest-serving cultural institutions.  Founded in 1951 by Ray and Mary Boley, most early recordings were sold to the Native American community.  In 1984, Ray initiated a new era in Native American music by signing R. Carlos Nakai to the label.  Robert Doyle bought the company in 1992 and has expanded its roster to more than 250 artists performing traditional contemporary and new music styles.  Canyon Records has earned the only two Gold Records for Native American music, a Grammy Award, 32 Grammy nominations, 4 Indie Awards and 33 Native American Music Awards.