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Information: Sarah Sidman | 206-788-3051 | sarahsidman@artsfund.org
ArtsFund, Vice President of Strategic Initiatives & Communications

For Immediate Release
March 27, 2018


Seattle, WA – ArtsFund will host its 30th annual Celebration of the Arts Luncheon on Tuesday, May 8, 2018 at the Westin Seattle. Jane Chu, Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, will deliver the keynote address. Entitled “The Arts in Our Lives”, Chairman Chu’s remarks will center on the vital role of arts in cities and communities. ArtsFund will honor author Jamie Ford with the Outstanding Contribution to the Arts award. Emory Thomas, Publisher, Puget Sound Business Journal, will serve as Master of Ceremonies.

Theming the luncheon around the role of arts in cities and communities, ArtsFund President and CEO Mari Horita explained this year’s focus: “At ArtsFund, it’s part of our mission to collect and share the data on how arts build community. As we gather business, civic, and cultural leaders in celebration and support of the arts, we are honored to present the National Endowment for the Arts Chairman, Jane Chu, to offer her national perspective on how arts activate cities and communities throughout the country.”

The luncheon is generously supported by Premier Sponsors Delta Dental of Washington, Microsoft, and Wells Fargo; by Event Sponsors Amazon, The Boeing Company, CenturyLink, Columbia Bank, and Perkins Coie; and by Supporting Sponsors Cairncross & Hemplemann, Fox Rothschild LLP, Seattle Bank, and Safeco Insurance. Delta Air Lines is the Official Airline of the Celebration of the Arts Luncheon.

Registration is available until April 27th, 2018 at https://connect.artsfund.org/luncheon-2018. For more information, visit www.artsfund.org or call 206.281.9050.

About Jane Chu:

JANE CHU is the eleventh chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. With a background in arts administration and philanthropy, Chairman Chu is also an accomplished artist and musician. She leads a dedicated and passionate group of people to support and fund the arts and creative activities in communities across the nation.

During her tenure to date, Chu has awarded more than $409 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and artists; issued new research reports on arts participation and the impact of the arts and cultural industries on the nation’s gross domestic product; has made it to all 50 states, visiting hundreds of communities across the nation to see first-hand how the arts are impacting people and places; and launched the United States of Arts project that demonstrates the importance of the arts in our communities and our lives. In 2015, Chairman Chu launched her signature leadership initiative, Creativity Connects, to investigate the current state of the arts in our nation, and explore how the arts connect with other industries. She also oversaw multiple-year increases to the NEA’s Congressional budget appropriation to expand its military healing arts initiative, Creative Forces.

Chu was born in Shawnee, Oklahoma, and raised in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, the daughter of Chinese immigrants. She studied music growing up, eventually receiving bachelor’s degrees in piano performance and music education, as well as master’s degrees in music and piano pedagogy, a PhD in philanthropic studies, an MBA, as well as three honorary degrees.

About Jamie Ford:

JAMIE FORD is a Northwest author most widely known for his bestselling Seattle-based novels. His debut, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, spent two years on the New York Times bestseller list, won the 2010 Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, and was a finalist for the Washington State Book Award, the Pacific Northwest Book Award, and the Langum Prize for Historical Fiction. Hotel was named the #1 Book Club pick in 2010 by the American Bookseller Association and is now read widely in schools across the country. This multi-cultural tale was adapted by Book-It Repertory Theatre, and has recently been optioned for a stage musical, and for film, with George Takei serving as Executive Producer. Jamie’s second book, Songs of Willow Frost, was also a national bestseller. His third novel set in Seattle, Love and Other Consolations Prizes, was published last fall and Library Journal named it one of the Best Historical Fiction Novels of 2017.

An award-winning short-story writer, his work has been published in multiple anthologies, from Asian-themed steampunk set in Seattle in the Apocalypse Triptych, to stories exploring the universe of masked marvels and caped crusaders from an Asian American perspective in Secret Identities: The first Asian American Superhero Anthology, and Shattered: The Asian American Comics Anthology. His essays on race, identity, love, heroes, and complex families have been published nationwide. His work has now been translated into 35 languages.

Jamie is the great-grandson of Nevada mining pioneer, Min Chung, who emigrated from Kaiping, China to San Francisco in 1865, where he adopted the western name “Ford,” thus confusing countless generations. Ford earned a degree in design from the Art Institute of Seattle and also attended Seattle’s School of Visual Concepts. Having grown up near Seattle’s Chinatown, he now lives in Montana where he’s on a never-ending search for decent dim sum.

He can be found tweeting @jamieford and on Instagram @jamiefordofficial.

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ArtsFund’s Mission:  ArtsFund strengthens the community by supporting the arts through leadership, advocacy, and grant making.

ArtsFund’s Vision:  A community with a dynamic and world-class arts and cultural sector where the arts are accessible to all and valued as central and critical to a healthy society.

Download the full press release here.