Eight winners have been selected to receive Governor’s Awards for the Arts in Ohio this year.
A tradition since 1971, the Governor’s Awards showcase and celebrate exceptional Ohio artists, arts organizations, arts leaders and patrons, educators, and business support of the arts. Award recipients are presented with the only arts award in the state that is conferred by the governor.
In recognition of their impactful and visionary leadership in Ohio’s creative sector and their sustained dedication to promoting artistic excellence, awardees will be honored during a ceremony on May 17, 2023.
“Ohio features a wealth of artistic talent, creative entrepreneurs, and innovative arts leaders and educators. Our shared strength in the arts makes the Buckeye state a great place to live, work, and raise a family. We’re proud to showcase and celebrate Ohio’s cultural assets through the Governor’s Awards for the Arts,” said OAC Executive Director Donna S. Collins.
Each of the winners will receive an original work of art by painter Brian Robinson of Dover.
Registration for the event opens soon, and additional information will be available in the coming weeks. Visit the Governor’s Awards page for regular updates.
The 2023 award recipients and categories follow:
- Arts Administration | Kathy Wade | Cincinnati (Hamilton)
- Arts Education | Dr. Douglas Marrah | Ashland (Ashland)
- Arts Patron | Louella Reese | Granville (Licking)
- Business Support of the Arts | Walnut Street Gallery, LLC | Wooster (Wayne)
- Community Development and Participation (co-winner) | Michael London | Dayton (Montgomery)
- Community Development and Participation (co-winner) | Black Swamp Arts Festival | Bowling Green (Wood)
- Individual Artist | Tricia Kaman | Cleveland (Cuyahoga)
- Irma Lazarus Award | Ann Hamilton | Columbus (Franklin)
Here’s more info about Michael London | Community Development and Participation
Dayton (Montgomery), our local winner.
Michael London is a playwright, arts administrator, and arts management educator with a strong belief that the arts are for everyone. He currently serves as the director of the Ohio Playwrights Circle—a service organization dedicated to providing encouragement, opportunity, and education for Ohio playwrights. In 2021, he was elected as Ohio’s regional representative for the Dramatist Guild of America. Over a career spanning five decades, Mr. London has worked to help strengthen arts access for diverse communities across the state. From 1978 to 1985, he was a member of the Ohio Arts Council’s Minority Arts Task Force. He also served from 1985 to 2010 as arts advisor for the Ohio Arts Council’s Minority Arts Program, where he helped hundreds of organizations serving communities of color and marginalized communities grow their capacity and outreach. Mr. London also worked, from 1993 to 1998, as the policy consultant and community liaison for the Ohio Appalachian Arts Initiative. A Native American descendant, Mr. London has worked with Indigenous organizations for many years as an arts and management advisor. Currently, he is the planning director for the 2023 Native Voices Project, which will share Story Circles with Native Americans living in Ohio and inspire a new work of art.
A lifelong student of the arts, Mr. London’s studies include The Ohio State University and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in theatre, along with an additional Master of Arts in screenwriting for film and television, from Royal Holloway at the University of London. His work has been performed on stages in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom—where he currently serves as the Playwright-in-Residence for the London-based Benjamin Franklin House Museum.