Mayor's Awards

Presented every two years, the Mayor's Awards for Excellence in Arts & History celebrate people, organizations, and businesses that contribute to Boise's creative and cultural community. Award recipients must have demonstrated distinguished service, creative accomplishment, and a record of publication, presentation or research that enhances Boise's artistic, historic, and broader cultural life.


Join Boise City Mayor Lauren McLean and the Boise City Department of Arts & History on Thursday, September 21, 2023 at 6 p.m. at Treefort Music Hall for the 2023 Mayor's Awards for Excellence in Arts & History to recognize distinguished service in the following categories:

Excellence in the Arts
Excellence in History
Excellence in Education
Support of the Cultural Sector
Emerging Artist
Lifetime Achievement


On the same evening, Mayor McLean will also appoint the 2024-2025 City of Boise Cultural Ambassador. Learn more.


The evening will feature performances by Boise State University Jazz and Boise Contemporary Theater. Evening host and music set by Radio Boise's DJ Winkle. Dinner catered by Life's Kitchen. No host bar.



For more information, email or call (208) 608-7050.

The Boise City Department of Arts & History encourages persons with disabilities and those who require language assistance to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing an accommodation, please contact email, as soon as possible, but no later than 72 hours before the event.



As a government agency and with a responsibility to support Boise’s creative and cultural sector, the Boise City Department of Arts & History brought about several initiatives to support the creative community in a time of crisis. In lieu of the biennial Mayor’s Awards for Excellence in Arts & History, the first ever Mayor’s Appreciation Day for Arts, History, & Culture was held on September 16, 2021 in celebration of our broader cultural sector with performances by and compensation for these irreplaceable workers. Learn more.


Excellence in the Arts
Randy Van Dyck

Excellence in History
Idaho Black History Museum

Lifetime Achievement
Tom Tompkins


Excellence in the Arts
Sue Latta

Excellence in History
Jennifer Stevens

Excellence in Education
James Jirak

Emerging Organizations
Sector Seventeen

Support of the Arts
Rocci Johnson
Radio Boise

Spotlight Award
Boise Art Museum - 80th Anniversary


Excellence in Arts
Carl Rowe, Individual
MING Studio, Emerging Organization

Excellence in Art Education
Marguerite Lawrence
Excellence in the Field of History
Errol Jones
Support of the Arts
Driek and Michael Zirinsky
Business Support of Culture
Modern Hotel & Bar
Lifetime Achievement
John Colias 


Excellence in Arts--Individual: Kerry Moosman
Excellence in Arts--Organization: Boise Contemporary Theater
Excellence in History--Organization: Friends of Jesus Urquides
Business Support for the Arts: U.S. Bank
Excellence in Art Education: Individual, Rick Jenkins
Excellence in Art Education: Organization, Boise Rock School
Excellence in History Education: Kurt Zwolfer
Excellence in Arts-- Support for the Arts / Individual: Susan Smith
Excellence in Arts-- Support for the Arts/ Organization: L.M. Cummingham Foundation
Excellence in Arts-- Emerging Organization: Treefort Music Fest
Lifetime Achievement: Pug Ostling
Lifetime Achievement: Esther Simplot
Sesquicentennial Award-- Community: Phil Kushlan
Sesquicentennial Award-- Enterprise: Idaho Statesman
Sesquicentennial Award-- Environment: Donald Belts Jr.


Excellence in Arts--Individual:  Surel Mitchell
Excellence in Arts--Organization:  The Cabin
Excellence in History--Organization:  Basque Museum and Cultural Center
Excellence in History--Individual: Mark Baltes
Business Support for the Arts:  Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center
Business Support for History:  Planmakers (John Bertram)
Excellence in Art Educationn--Organization: Idaho Shakespeare Festival
Excellence in Art Education--Individual: Leah Stephens Clark
Excellence in History Education:  Doug StanWiens, Boise School District
Lifetime Achievement:  Jane Oppenheimer (posthumously)
Lifetime Achievement:  Tim Woodward, retired, Idaho Statesman 


Excellence in Arts--Organization:  Boise State University Student Union
Individual Support for the Arts: Jacqueline Crist
Business Support for the Arts: Flying M Coffee House
Excellence in Art Education: Fool Squad
Lifetime Achievement: Arthur Hart
Lifetime Achievement: Charles Hummel
Excellence in History--Organization: Idaho Historical Museum
Excellence in Arts--Individual: Steve Fulton
Excellence in History--Individual: Todd Shallat
Excellence in History Education: Robert Sims
Business Support for History: TAG Historical Research and Consulting


Excellence in Art Education: Phil and Wendy Hartman
Excellence in Art Education: Jon Swarthout
Individual Support for the Arts: Kay Hardy and Gregory Kaslo
Business Integration of the Arts: Classic Design Studio / Noel and Lucy Weber
Business Support of the Arts: The Record Exchange/ Jill Sevy and Michael Bunnell
Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Anthony Doerr
Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Matthew Cameron Clark
Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Curtis Stigers


Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Ward Hooper
Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Jennifer Martin
Artistic Excellence in the Arts: James Ogle
Individual Support for the Arts: Rick Clark and Liz Roberts
Business Support of the Arts: Key Bank
Business Support of the Arts: First Thursday, presented by Downtown Boise Association
Excellence in Art Education: Paul Shaffer, Log Cabin Literary Center
Spotlight Award: Boise Music Week


Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Star Moxley
Artistic Excellence in the Arts: Gene Harris
Individual Support for the Arts: Royanne Minskoff
Business Support of the Arts: Boise Cascade
Excellence in Art Education: John O'Hagan
Excellence in Art Education: Boise Art Museum Docents
Spotlight Award: Capital City Development Corporation


Charles Fee
Del Parkinson
Marilyn Beck
First Security/Wells Fargo
Joe Baldassarre
Ballet Idaho Education Department
Ruth Wright
Idaho Foundation for Parks & Lands


Oinkari Basque Dancers
Stephanie Wilde
Noreen Shanafelt
Pug Ostling
Ore-Ida/Grant Jones
Boise Little Theater


Alan Minskoff
Michael Baltzell
Toni Pimble
Sandy Harthorn
Rick Jenkins
The Flicks


West One Bank
Pat Nelson
Boise Arts Museum
Idaho Shakespeare Festival


Beaux Arts Society
Doug Copsey
Mary McKenzie


Howard Huff
Melvin Shelton
Eugene Sullivan, M.D.


Idaho Theater for Youth
John Killmaster
Arthur M. Albanese


John Elliot
Boise Philharmonic
John Chapman


Elizabeth Schlaeffle Ratcliff
Mimi Copsey
Jim Jausoro


C. Griffith Bratt
Boise Master Chorale
David Horland


John Takahara
Esther Simplot
American Festival Ballet