PAS Celebrates 2011 in the Arts
The Performing Arts Society celebrated its 27th Annual Recognition Banquet and Awards Program on Tuesday, May 3, 2011. Retiring Board Members, Nancy & Bruce Foster and Janice & John King, were honored for 6 years of distinguished service to the PAS.
The organization also presented their DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARDS FOR 2010-2011. The roots of the Performing Arts Society are grounded in volunteerism, community service, and a love for the arts. The PAS is fortunate that all of these qualities are in abundant supply at Western Illinois University and in Macomb. The annual banquet is an opportunity for the PAS to honor very deserving people who make a tremendous difference at Western and in Macomb by supporting the PAS and the arts in the community.
The 2011 BCA Award was presented to Paul Kreider for distinguished service to the BCA over his seven-year tenure in the College of Fine Arts and Communication. Kreider’s dedication to the Bureau of Cultural Affairs, a student organization, and his support have greatly strengthened an excellent organization.
In addition to the generous support PAS receives from its constituent members, it enjoys considerable support from its business and corporate partners. It is through this support, the PAS finds it possible to underwrite the expenses for performances brought to our community through the BCA and the Youth Performing Arts Series.
The Performing Arts Society began recognizing its corporate sponsors in the early 1990’s through the Community Service Award. In 1996, the very first Corporate Salute was awarded.
This year, the PAS Corporate Salute Award was presented to Marketplace Selections, a family owned business from Peoria, who have been instrumental in the creation and success the 4th PAS social and fundraising event—Beerfest. The award is presented not for underwriting support, but for their singularly impressive quality of service.
The PAS turned to the experts at Marketplace Selections to assist in creating a beer menu perfectly suitable for Beerfest that would excite and challenge even the most savvy beer drinker.
Marketplace Selections is a family owned Peoria business with a commitment to customer support. This past year, Marketplace was the lone beer distributor for Beerfest and the results were simply outstanding. Marketplace cared for the PAS as if the PAS were its only customer. Accepting the award for Marketplace Selections were Gordon & Virginia Jockish, co-owners of Marketplace Selections.
Community Service Award
The Performing Arts Society was created by a small group of thoughtful and committed people who truly wanted to enhance their community through the support of the arts. Individuals contribute in so many different, yet significant, ways to ensure that the performing arts remain an integral part of the community and region.
The service comes in a variety of forms from serving on boards, to volunteering at and attending events and performances, and contributing financially through the WIU Foundation. The Community Service Award recognizes individuals for their unwavering support of the arts over several years.
This year, the PAS honored two remarkable ladies with the Community Service Award for their lifetime of service.
The first Community Service Award recipient is Susan Shoemaker. She is a lifelong music teacher and currently the choir director at Trinity Lutheran Church in Macomb.
But most importantly for the PAS, nine years ago Susan founded the McDonough Choral Society. This unique community organization is dedicated to the principles of
• Nurturing choral music and its inspirational appeal,
• Cultivating public interest in choral music,
• Instilling in its members a spirit of dedication and a desire to excel.
The group performs two concerts each year, one in the fall and one in the spring, at various venues in the community. The McDonough Choral Society fills a need in the community by offering a choral music experience for both amateur as well as professional musicians.
To those ends, and by every possible measure, Susan Shoemaker and the McDonough Choral Society have made a tremendous impact on our community.
The second Community Service Award recipient is Kelly Quinn. She is a resident of Macomb and an accomplished artist. Kelly’s original mosaics can be seen throughout the community, but many are probably most familiar with and continuously marvel at her mosaic at Grant School.
Kelly is a tireless advocate for inspiring both youth and adult artists and ensures they have an outlet to properly display their creativity in the West Central Illinois Arts Center. Kelly has been a member of the West Central Illinois Arts Center for nine years and currently serves on their board. There is no doubt that Kelly will play an instrumental role in the future success of art in Macomb and the future success of the West Central Illinois Arts Center.
The Ruth Watts Award
Ruth Watts served as the Executive Director of the Macomb Downtown Development Committee on a part- time basis, and, with a National Endowment for the Arts grant, served as the first Executive Director of the Performing Arts Society beginning in 1984.
Along with the early Board members, Ruth enabled the PAS to grow from an idea into a viable and important organization. Ruth loved Macomb and Western and sincerely believed it was her responsibility to serve the community and she did so with grace and dignity. Although Ruth is no longer with us, her legacy certainly lives on.
The Community Arts Service Award, as it was originally known, was renamed the Ruth Watts Award in her honor to recognize special service to the Performing Arts Society.
The PAS honored 3 of its own with this recognition—Janice King, Brenda Nelson, and John Nelson. The PAS fundraising and social events are designed to accomplish several things: to provide members and guests with a meaningful social experience and an evening of quality entertainment; to financially advance the mission of the organization; and to accomplish all of this with a certain flair and sense of style.
The three Ruth Watts Award recipients have all accomplished this and so much more in their service to PAS. Janice King’s keen eye for detail and willingness to give of her time and especially her decorating talent ensured that many past events, specifically including past Galas, were “ready for prime time.” Also not forgotten is that Janice served multiple tours of duty as PAS secretary, often a thankless task in any organization.
Also on their second PAS board term, Brenda and John Nelson dedicated countless hours to ensuring the success of many PAS events, particularly the Wine Tasting and Beerfest. For quite some time, PAS relied on the professional expertise of a longtime wine distributor to develop a list of wines for the annual event. When it lost that expertise, the Nelsons willingly assumed the role of chief researcher and taste tester to shepard the PAS through the often intimidating wine selection process.
Perhaps they would be the first to confess that maintaining a working knowledge of a vast array of wines is not an unpleasurable task, they in fact devoted an enormous amount of personal time to this project. The rewarding results of the past two wine tasting events speak volumes about the competence and dedication of the Nelsons to the PAS.
William E. Brattain Distinguished Service Award
Dr. William E. Brattain, “Dr. Bill,” former WIU Associate Vice President for Student Services, served as the Director of the University Union for over twenty-four years. He was instrumental in providing leadership opportunities for hundreds of students, many of whom are now in the student affairs profession.
With respect to the performing arts, there is no one who compares to Dr. Bill Brattain’s commitment and love of the arts. In one way or another, Bill provided leadership and support to the development of the performing arts in our community since his arrival at WIU in 1971. Bill’s leadership with the Bureau of Cultural Affairs and the development of the Performing Arts Society in 1984 truly created a partnership between WIU and the city of Macomb which lives on today.
The Illinois Service Award—as it was originally known—was renamed the William E. Brattain Distinguished Service Award in his honor upon his retirement from Western. The award recognizes special service to the arts in general and to PAS.
This year, it is with heartfelt, but reluctant gratitude, that the PAS recognized the retiring and departing leadership of Western Illinois University.
The first Bill Brattain Distinguished Service Award was presented to Al and Elaine Goldfarb. Upon the Goldfarb’s arrival in Macomb in 2002, the PAS had high expectations of its newly hired president. He was a well-recognized and respected theatre academic. Little did the PAS know that Al and Elaine would not only serve as cheerleaders-in-chief for the arts at Western, but Al would also serve as the unrelenting driving force to secure state approval and funding for the new Performing Arts Center. The PAS can now look forward to inviting Al and Elaine back to Western for the ribbon cutting and first performance in the new facility.
The second Bill Brattain Distinguished Service Award was presented to Paul Kreider, Dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication.
Upon arriving at Western in 2004, Paul Kreider’s impact on the PAS was immediate and significant. Most importantly for the PAS, Kreider guided the transition of the organization from student services at WIU where it had resided since inception into the College of Fine Arts and Communication where it has grown and thrived. During Kreider’s tenure, PAS membership increased by more than 30%, making the organization a premier “town & gown” success story in Macomb.
Kreider has positively influenced all of the PAS hallmark programs to include providing ongoing summer music camp scholarships; increasing support to the BCA; and continuing the PAS full funding of the Youth Performing Arts Series.
During Kreider’s tenure, the PAS also instituted the Academic Support Program to provide grant money not otherwise available to our talented and creative faculty. Since its inception, this program has awarded more than $80,000.
Kreider initiated the creation of Diamonds & Denim as well as Beerfest. Kreider has been an incredibly active advocate for the arts at Western and in Macomb and no WIU commencement ceremony will ever be quite the same without his rousing rendition of the National Anthem. Kreider also often donated his operatic talents to any number of productions or performances often at the insistent urging of WIU’s opera program director, Becky Kreider.
Perhaps less visible to the general public, was Kreider’s meticulous involvement in the plans for the Performing Arts Center. While we appropriately credit Al Goldfarb for leading the university charge in Springfield for the new building, it was Kreider who helped craft the details of the facility. Whether gathering faculty and community input, managing the universities responsibilities in the capital development process, or sorting out facility details with the architects, Kreider will leave an indelible mark on the new Performing Arts Center.
The Performing Arts Society is a better organization in every respect and more capable of supporting the arts at Western and in Macomb because of Paul Kreider’s service and leadership.
Go to the PAS website to view photos of the event.