DECEMBER 7, 2018  |  SOCIAL HOUR: 11am + LUNCHEON: 11:45am - 1:30pm  |  NEW HAVEN LAWN CLUB

The Arts Awards is our signature event to both support our mission and highlight exemplary accomplishments in our community each year ... plus, it's a lot of fun! Our theme this year celebrates the power of women in our creative community. In spite of the ongoing threats, women are rising and the arts can be central to this movement. 

DECEMBER 7, 2018 | SOCIAL HOUR: 11am + LUNCHEON: 11:45am - 1:30pm
The Arts Awards is our signature event to both support our mission and highlight exemplary accomplishments in our community each year ... plus, it's a lot of fun! Our theme this year celebrates the power of women in our creative community. In spite of the ongoing threats, women are rising and the arts can be central to this movement. Please reserve your seat now as the event sells out quickly.
Purchase Tickets
TICKETS: $100  |  TABLE: $925 


Please reserve your seat now as the event sells out quickly!   You may also call 203 772 2788 to reserve your seat or table. Can't attend? Consider making a donation or placing an ad in the program book. Sustaining Members receive a 10% table discount and a 10% discount on advertising. There are a limited number of $40 artist tickets available - for information call 203 772 2788.


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Rosa_Dalauro_2233-v1Rosa DeLauro

C. Newton Schenck III Award for Lifetime Achievement in and Contribution to the Arts

A steadfast champion of arts, culture, and community, Rosa DeLauro has served as a U.S. Representative for Connecticut's 3rd congressional district since 1991. While she is perhaps best known for her advocacy of women’s professional and reproductive rights, working families, higher minimum wage, and federally-subsidized nutrition assistance—all issues that affect the arts every day—she has also made the arts a direct priority, acting as a member of the Congressional Arts Caucus for over two decades. Through her 27 years of service, she has been vocal in her support for the National Endowment of the Arts, literacy initiatives, and arts education in schools.

Jackie_Downing_0006 -v1Jackie Downing

Jackie Downing may now be the Director of Grantmaking and Nonprofit Effectiveness at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, but her tradition of nurturing arts, culture, and community in greater New Haven goes decades back. After graduating from Southern Connecticut State University, she became an arts and community advocate at the New Haven Symphony Orchestra, Dixwell Community “Q” House, Capital for Change, and the Town of Hamden among others. She has kept her own creativity alive as an actor, producer and stage manager with the Whitney Players, Center Stage, and New Haven Ballet.

Hanan_Hameen_0348-v1Hanan Hameen

Hanan Hameen is a visionary artist, activist, and longtime arts leader in New Haven. The daughter of local jazz legend Jesse Hameen II, Hanan founded the Artsucation Academy Network in 2005 to provide community members with passion, drive, and creative and leadership skills. She serves as the founder and director of Ms. Hanan’s Dance and Beyond, director of Neighborhood Music School’s Premiere Dance Company, founding member of the New Haven Hip-Hop Conference, artistic director of the Healing Drum Society, and a support group facilitator for the Lupus Foundation of America.

Ruby_Melton 2-v1Ruby Melton

Ruby Melton is a true arts champion and mentor. The retired Deputy General Counsel for Louis Dreyfus Highbridge Energy, she has been a steadfast supporter of the arts for decades, serving on the boards of Long Wharf Theatre, the Shubert Theatre, National Council for the American Theatre, International Festival of Arts & Ideas, Gateway Community College Foundation, Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame, and Shepherds, Inc. Ruby has taken a broad lens and hands-on approach to the arts in New Haven, extending her expertise to mentorship initiatives with high school students in the city. She is, as Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame Director Sarah Lubarsky put it, a phenomenal calm in the storm. 

Elinor_Slomba_0315 -v1Elinor Slomba

The founder of Arts Interstices and Verge Arts Group, Elinor Slomba has made arts and culture a personal mission. After arriving in New Haven over a decade ago, she served as director for the city’s Project Storefronts program, adding the “Made In New Haven” initiative to her wheelhouse in 2016. She has served as cultural point person, trusted advisor, and curator with The Future Project, The Grove, Artspace New Haven, and the New Haven Museum, curating Old School Ink: New Haven Tattoos at the museum in 2017. She has also worked at Buffalo organization Locust Street Art, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, and as an independent arts consultant.

Hanifa_Washington_0460-v1Hanifa Nayo Washington

Hanifa Nayo Washington is a healer, truth-teller, producer, singer songwriter and weaver of community stories. An Inspiring Equity Arts Fellow with the William Casper Graustein Memorial Fund, she is the curator of a semi-monthly “Lit Happy Hour” series and Program Director of The Word. Her foundation in cultural activism and social justice sprawls across her career from working with homeless teens and food cooperatives in Maine to leadership roles in educational youth development platforms like The Freedom Schooner Amistad and Solar Youth. Her current work in New Haven is grounded in community building, community healing, and community liberation. In 2014 she joined the team of Co-Creating Effective & Inclusive Organizations/Organizers (CEIO) and is currently a leader of the Community Leadership Program. In 2017 she released her 3rd album Mantras for the Revolution and hosted a winter concert series. This past summer she produced and co-directed Toto Kisaku’s Requiem for an Electric Chair which premiered at the International Festival of Arts & Ideas. Hanifa is a co-working member at Lotta Studio’s The Range and lives in Westville.



Photos of awardees by Lotta Studio



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IMG_7353_small-006001-editedSheri Cifaldi-Morrill

Lift Up quilt

"One of the traits of a phenomenal woman is that she is committed to lifting others up. She is committed to helping and supporting others. She realizes that there is room in this world for everyone to succeed and knows that by encouraging others, individuals, families and communities are stronger."


MsHananAndPDC-053526-editedHanan Hameen

Dance by Premier Dance Company at Neighborhood Music School

"The story of the cycle of life as a phenomenal experience through the concept of the woman as the mother and bearer of life, mother earth as our life source, and the relationship between man and woman as the vessels for the physical life experience."


BitsiePostcardart-one-rowBitsie Clark Fund for Artists

In the spirit of the Arts Award’s theme of Phenomenal Women, The Bitsie Clark Fund for Artists has been created in honor of the dynamic, transformative former Executive Director of the Arts Council. The Fund, established by five of her proteges - now called the Bitsie Chicks - is designed to strengthen and enrich our community by investing in its artists. The Bitsie Chicks will briefly describe this new Fund, and present its first award at the Arts Awards this year!

Will you celebrate with us?

Purchase Tickets


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Phenomenal Angel

Wiggin Blue Solid Logo 300Wiggin and Dana

Wiggin and Dana is a full-service law firm with more than 140 attorneys. We are a true partnership of highly talented, creative and experienced lawyers dedicated to exceeding our clients' expectations every day. With offices in Connecticut, New York, Philadelphia, Washington, DC, and Palm Beach, we represent clients throughout the United States and globally on a wide range of sophisticated and complex matters.

Phenomenal Commissions Sponsor

MI-Logo-1Metropolitan Interactive

Metropolitan Interactive is our Arts Awards Commissions Sponsor helping support both an original performance and design exploring the Phenomenal Women theme. Metropolitan interactive is a Women-Owned Business Enterprise that intersects at the convergence of architecture, technology + communication — providing strategic, sustainable cross-channel solutions and scalable platforms that deliver true engagement at every touchpoint.

Phenomenal Scholarship Sponsor

UNHUniversity of New Haven

At the University of New Haven, students come first, and their personal and professional development is the primary focus. UNH's unique educational approach and distinguished academic programs ensure that our students excel at whatever it is they choose to do.

Phenomenal Benefactor


The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the United States and remains the largest grantmaker in a twenty-town region located in the heart of central Connecticut. 


Phenomenal Patrons


Chamber Insurance Trust

Chamber Insurance Trust (CIT) is a voluntary alliance of all participating Chambers of Commerce across Connecticut and Western Massachusetts. Chamber Insurance Trust has distinguished itself as a trusted expert, provider and educator on benefit solutions. Their mission is to provide consulting and education to the chamber community inclusive of agents, employers, and employees on how to confront the rising cost of healthcare.

Dual logoEdgehill Realtors

Edgehill Realtors, LLC, was established by Ray Baldelli and Wojtek Borowski, two top producing and award-winning agents/brokers at Pearce Real Estate as an effective way to better service the needs of their clients.

GCClogo_CMYKGateway Community College

Currently the largest of Connecticut's state community colleges, Gateway Community College (GCC) serves the residents and businesses of the Greater New Haven region with innovative educational programming and relevant social and cultural opportunities. Each year, more than 14,000 individuals choose from over 90 accredited degree and certificate programs, which they take for college credit, professional development, and personal enrichment.

Jewish Foundatiom logo_portrait_WEBJewish Foundation of Greater New Haven

The Jewish Foundation is a trusted and expert resource for charitable gift planning and endowments and serves as a partner and resource for synagogues, local Jewish agencies, professional advisors and donors.


KeyBank is one of the nation’s largest, bank-based financial services companies, making it easy for you to bank where you live.

NMSGreenLogoNeighborhood Music School

Neighborhood Music School (NMS) is the largest non-profit community arts organization in Connecticut and one of the 10 largest in the country. Founded in 1911 as part of the settlement house movement serving new immigrants to New Haven, NMS now serves more than 2,700 students from 80+ cities and towns annually.


Founded in 1994, Technolutions has served the education industry for more than two decades. In 2000, Technolutions introduced Slate, its flagship information management system, at Yale University. Over the past decade, Slate has been adopted by hundreds of colleges and universities and continues to grow its community. Technolutions is the de facto standard-bearer for admissions technology.

logoynhhospital2xYale New Haven Hospital

Yale New Haven Hospital enhances the lives of the people we serve by providing access to high value, patient-centered care in collaboration with those who share our values. YNHH is committed to innovation and excellence in patient care, teaching, research and service to our communities.

yale-blue@2xYale University

Since its founding in 1701, Yale has been dedicated to expanding and sharing knowledge, inspiring innovation, and preserving cultural and scientific information for future generations.

Become a Sponsor

Check out our Sponsorship Opportunities or contact Megan for details


Selection Process

The C. Newton Schenck III Award for Lifetime Achievement in and Contribution to the Arts is selected by our Board of Directors

Awardees are nominated by the community and selected by an independent jury, which this year included Katie Eber, Kim Futrell, Helen Kauder, Jules Larson, Annie Lin, Jocelyn Maminta, Eileen Scully, and Margaret Anne Tockarshewsky

The Phenomenal Women theme and Commissions were selected by the Arts Council team

Explore 38 years of awardees

Share the News

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Arts Awards 2018 - Congrats Rosa-1

Arts Awards 2018 - Congrats Jackie-1


Arts Awards 2018 - Congrats Hanan-1

Arts Awards 2018 - Congrats Ruby-1


Arts Awards 2018 - Congrats Elinor-1

Arts Awards 2018 - Congrats Hanifa

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