Awards & Events

Ohio Alliance for Arts Education
2012 Arts Education Virtuoso Award recipients

COLUMBUS, Ohio – May 16, 2012– The Ohio Alliance for Arts Education (OAAE) today announced the winners of its 2012 Arts Education Virtuoso Awards, given annually to recognize exemplary support for and commitment to quality arts education programs by individuals and organizations. The awards will be presented on June 2 at 2:00 PM during a ceremony at the Vern Riffe Center for Government and the Arts, 77 S. High St., in Columbus. The ceremony will be held as part of an arts education celebration that includes a theatre performance of The 39 Steps by CATCO (Contemporary American Theatre Company).  Details and ticket information may be obtained by calling OAAE at 614.224.1060.

The recipients are:

No photo available Steve and Joy Kaser of Delaware, Ohio, for their lifetime of philanthropic contribution to the arts and arts education;
Superintendent Camille Nasbe and Fine Arts Director David Bell, of Winton Woods City Schools, Cincinnati, for support of arts education in curricula;
Santina Protopapa executive director and founder of Progressive Arts Alliance, Cleveland, for her grassroots community arts education work;
Jackie Calderone director of Calderone Arts, and founding director of TRANSIT ARTS, Columbus, for her innovative programs for central Ohio youth;
  AEP Foundation, Columbus, for their strong commitment to the arts and arts education in Ohio.


Lima City Schools Board of Education, Lima, Ohio, will also be recognized as Ohio’s nominee to the national Kennedy Center Alliance for Arts Education Network and National School Board Association Annual Award.

“Arts education in Ohio’s schools differs from town to town and in recent years has become less of a priority for some districts as they struggle to make tough financial decisions,” said Christy Farnbauch, OAAE president. “Through the efforts of our award winners, Ohio students received high quality instruction from professional arts educators, experienced unique artist residencies and effective arts-integrated learning experiences.”

OAAE’s Award Committee is chaired by Lauren Hess, Marketing Manager, May Festival, Cincinnati. Committee members include Dr. Mara J. Gross, Managing Director, Columbus Children’s Choir; David Guion, Executive Director, Dublin Arts Council;  Jarrod Hartzler, Managing Director, Ashland Symphony Orchestra, Wooster; Tim Katz, Education Director, Community Arts Education program, Greater Columbus Arts Council; and Christy Farnbauch, President, Strategic Links, LLC, Hilliard.

For more information on the OAAE and the Arts Education Virtuoso Award Program, contact Donna Collins, Executive Director, Ohio Alliance for Arts Education, at 614.224.1060 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.