Release Date: May 20,2019

Summit Artspace announces 2019 Arts Alive awards honorees and finalists

Excitement is building to see who will be awarded honors for the impact they have on local arts and culture during the 2019 Arts Alive Awards and Fundraiser at Summit Artspace on East Market on June 11, starting at 6 p.m.

The Arts Alive Awards committee announced the list of creatives in 14 categories, including nominations from the public.

The honorees chosen for the top awards recognizing significant impact on local arts and culture from a community-wide perspective are: Summit Artspace Champion-Akron Community Foundation; Arts Alive Award-Barbara Feld; and Lifetime Achievement Award-Joan Colbert.

The finalists for the categories dedicated to art disciplines, education and advocacy are: Outstanding Visual Artist-Amy Mothersbaugh, Judith Gaiser and Micah Kraus; Outstanding Artist in Music-Zach Friedhof, Jane Berkner and Brad Wagner; Outstanding Artist in Dance-Jane Startzman and Dominic Moore Dunson; Outstanding Artist in Theater-John Dayo Aliya, Dane C.T. Leasure and Jairo Cuesta; Outstanding Arts Volunteer-Brenda Schneider, Lizzie Lukens Conrad and Yoly Miller; Outstanding Patron-Bounce Innovation Hub/Hazel Tree Design Studio, Dr. Saroj Sutaria and Western Reserve Hospital; Community Outreach-Art of Recovery, Christa Boske for the Social Justice Project and Center for Applied Drama and Autism; Arts Educator-Dillon Sedar, Dara Harper and Ashlynn Schindler; Emerging Artist-Nathan Prebonick, River Berry and Victoria Rose; Rising New Leadership-Marissa McClellan, Courtney Cable and Karen Walters; and Collaborative Project-Jennifer Dale Fox for The Penny Project, Akron Art Museum and Akron Public Library for the Akron Art Library and the Akron Center for Art, Music and Performance.

The Arts Alive Awards event was created in 2001 to recognize gifted artists, art educators and change-making advocates with an inspiring celebration of achievement.

The three top awards recognize individuals or organizations who have significantly shaped community life through art. The Arts Alive Award recognizes an individual or individuals who give selflessly to the cause of advancing arts and culture in the community without seeking recognition.

The Lifetime Achievement Award honors an individual artist, arts manager, advocate or other who strengthens arts and culture in the community through decades of service.

Summit Artspace Champion Award goes to an individual, group or organization that has been a true champion for Summit Artspace; who has provided extraordinary and ongoing support for its mission as places for the creative.

Diana Selzer and Ace Epps are the event’s honorary co-chairs for Summit Artspace’s 10th celebration of the award and fundraising event that includes food, music, entertainment, a silent auction and, new this year, an after party with food truck fare and music in Inspiration Alley.

Selzer is a vice president and relationship manager with Wells Fargo Middle Market Banking Group. Epps is the community manager for Akron BMe Community and hosts “Center Talks” on WAKR. Both are dedicated community volunteers who support the arts.

Reservations are $65 per person and are on sale now. A reservation includes appetizers, live music, awards and admission to the after party that is also open to the public starting at 8 p.m. Guests will also be able to bid on unique, local art in the silent auction during the Arts Alive Awards.

Guests can choose to attend only the after party for $20 per person. There will be a cash bar open throughout the main event and after party. There will be music by “SPACE ACE” DJ Ace Epps at after party.

To make reservations for the award event and after party, go to All proceeds from the event support the galleries and programming at Summit Artspace.