2015 Award Winners

Advocate ACE Award – Carolyn Baxley, for her dedication and commitment in championing the careers of emerging and established artists in Champaign County, and for her tireless effort in creating and supporting an accessible venue for local and regional artists to showcase their work.

Artist ACE Award – Nina Paley, for her outstanding and internationally recognized animated films, her activism in the free culture movement, and her contributions to PaleGray labs, a textile collaboration that translates digital designs into large scale quilts.

Volunteer ACE Award – Brenda Koenig, for being the guiding force behind creating and sustaining the Champaign-Urbana Folks & Roots Festival, and for her tireless commitment to folk and old-time music in Champaign County.

Business ACE Award – Weiskamp Screen Printing, for demonstrating remarkable support of local art through collaborations and partnerships with several community arts programs and initiatives, contributing public art space, offering community workshops, and providing employment opportunities for artists and designers.

Teacher ACE Award – Rusty Clevenger, for providing his students the opportunity to express themselves and find individual meaning in the arts by integrating cultural experiences into Urbana elementary classrooms through collaborations with local arts organizations, venues, and guest artists.

Student ACE Award – Xuxa Rodriguez, PH.D Candidate Fellow in Art History at UIUC, for her passionate participation and consistent involvement in community cultural events, as well as her research in contemporary art by Latina and AfroLatina artists.

Lifetime ACE Award – Harry Breen, for his decades of limitless talent and enthusiasm, his life-long dedication to his craft, his profound impact on countless students, as well as his veneration of his community and the surrounding environment.

The winners were chosen from over 110 public nominations by an independent panel of community-based judges representing a broad cross-section of Champaign County.  The judges were: Lisa Dixon, Associate Professor at UIUC Department of Theatre; Erin Lippitz, Executive Director of the Champaign Center Partnership; Mike Ingram, local musician, Pygmalion Music Festival Director of Operations, and Partner in Amnesiac Booking Co.; Lawrence McGown, owner of McGown Photography; Cynthia Voelkl, Assistant Director at Japan House.

Thank you UPTV for filming the 2015 ACE Awards!