City of Thousand Oaks Cultural Affairs Commission Announces Excellence in Arts Award 2017 Honorees

City of Thousand Oaks Cultural Affairs Commission Announces Excellence in Arts Award 2017 HonoreesOn Thursday, October 19, 2017, The City of Thousand Oaks Cultural Affairs Commission will honor Michael Pearce, Tish Greenwood, Edward Francis, and Young Artists Ensemble for their work in the arts. The event will take place at 7:00pm in the Janet and Ray Scherr Forum Theatre, at Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Thousand Oaks, CA 91362. The free event will be followed by a light reception. The Excellence in the Arts Awards are designed to honor and celebrate persons and organizations which contribute to the vibrancy of the arts and culture and increase access to arts experiences in Thousand Oaks. Also presented that evening, and still to be announced, is The Mayor's Award, granted to a recipient chosen at the discretion of the current Mayor of Thousand Oaks, Claudia Bill de-la Pena.

The honorees are:

Michael Pearce will receive the Artist of the Year Award. This award recognizes a dedicated individual's excellence and accomplishments in an arts discipline; an individual with unique vision, high artistic quality, creativity and innovation. Pearce is an internationally known, Thousand Oaks-based, contemporary visual artist, author, and professor. He teaches painting and drawing at Cal Lutheran University, is the author of Art in the Age of Emergence, and is known for his large, figurative oil paintings.

Tish Greenwood will receive the Emerging Arts Leadership Award for her work as the Executive Director of the California Museum of Art Thousand Oaks (CMATO). Greenwood is dedicated to creating cultural spaces where ideas are shared and people connect. The award is presented to a person or organization demonstrating the potential to influence and elevate the arts and culture through outstanding vision, leadership, and creativity.

Edward Francis will, posthumously, receive the Community Impact Award; which is presented to a person or organization who has inspired and encouraged the arts and culture in Thousand Oaks in a creative or innovative way. Francis was an award-winning pianist, educator, and music advocate. He was the Founder and Artistic Director of Concertos with Orchestra Thousand Oaks, now known as the Thousand Oaks Philharmonic.

Young Artists Ensemble will receive the Exceptional Arts Education Award. This award is presented to an individual or organization for excellent work in and significant contributions to arts education. Young Artist Ensemble (YAE) is a joint presentation of the Conejo Recreation and Park District (CRPD) and the Arts Council of the Conejo Valley (ACCV). YAE began in 1981 and provides the youth of the Conejo Valley opportunities to learn and experience the arts.

The Excellence in the Arts Awards have been presented since 1988 and are currently overseen by an ad hoc committee of the Cultural Affairs Commission and volunteer members of the community. The committee defines the Arts as visual and performing arts, including, but not limited to: music, dance, theatre, painting, sculpture, photography and traditional/folk art. For these specific awards, the arts do not include literary arts; philanthropy, while important, is not considered to be a factor in the criteria for any award.

The Excellence in the Arts Awards are scheduled for October 19, 2017 at 7:00pm in the Scherr Forum at Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza. Admission to the Excellence in the Arts Awards is free; however, seats are limited and reservations are encouraged and can be made via email to

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