2005 Mayor’s Arts Awards

2005, the third year of the Mayor’s Arts Awards celebrated six individuals and organizations that have had a tremendous impact on our City. Please help us celebrate David Brewster and Town Hall, Peter Donnelly, Sara Liberty-Laylin and Adams Elementary, Alden Mason, The Tsutakawa Family and Reverend Patrinell Wright and Total Experience Gospel Choir, the 2005 Mayor’s Arts Award recipients.

Nominations are open now and this year’s ceremony will take place on Thursday, August 31 at the Seattle Center Mural Amphitheatre at 4 p.m.

2005 highlights:

Seattle News: Jimi Hendrix’s (1942-1970) childhood home is moved from Seattle’s Central Area to Renton. –September 11, 2005

Top local music: Death Cab for Cutie—Plans; Minus The Bear—Menos El Oso

Top local grossing films: Best Film: Innocent Voices; Best Short: Raftman’s Razor; Best Documentary: Murderball —Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF)

Top Books/best sellers in Seattle: When the Emperor Was Divine—Julie Otsuka —Seattle Public Library

Top TV shows: TV show Grey’s Anatomy (set in Seattle) premiered. —March 27, 2005


Celebrating the 2005 Mayor’s Arts Award recipients:

David Brewster and Town Hall—Cultural Catalyst

Town Hall Seattle is a vibrant artistic and civic hub located in the heart of Seattle. Annually, they engage 100,000+ people at more than 425 events and educational programs. Their mission is to level the cultural playing field and amplify the voices of diverse communities.

David Brewster is a longtime journalist and civic entrepreneur in Seattle. He is also the founder, creator, and former executive director of Town Hall Seattle. Since coming to Seattle, Brewster has founded and led several organizations, such as: Seattle Weekly and Sasquatch Books. Currently Brewster is the President of The Seattle Athenaeum.

Peter Donnelly—Tour de Force

The late Peter Donnelly was a key figure in the Seattle artistic community for more than 45 years. During his 21-year tenure with the Seattle Repertory Theatre he served as the managing director and later the producing director. Donnelly also co-founded the Seattle Arts Commission, served as Vice-Chairman of Americans for the Arts and was the President and CEO of ArtsFund until retiring in 2005. He served on the Board of Directors for many arts organizations as well.

Sara Liberty Laylin and Adams Elementary School—Innovation in Integrated Arts Education

Adams Elementary, located in the heart of Ballard, is a holistic school that provides an engaging, arts-integrated education. Teachers use the arts to expand learning opportunities in all subjects and every student, including bilingual and special education children, receive hands-on instruction in visual and performing arts.

Sara Liberty‑Laylin has been an educator for over 29 years; she has taught Pre-k through high school. Liberty-Laylin served as the principal at Adams Elementary School, creating their integrated Arts curriculum. Sara truly believes that the arts will teach humanity and as a result students will be better able to cope with the diversity offered in Seattle.

Alden Mason, Northwest Legacy—Visual Art

The late Alden Mason was a Pacific Northwest artist, painter, leader and mentor; he dedicated himself to the arts community for over 50 years. As a teacher at the University of Washington School of Art, Mason brought his own artistic vision to the classroom, inspiring his students to ‘paint what you feel.’ Mason’s work has been featured in numerous galleries and museums in the Pacific Northwest, San Francisco and Wisconsin.

The Tsutakawa Family: Gerard, Deems, Marcus and Mayumi—A Generation of Artistic Inspiration & Leadership

The sons and daughter of Ayame Iwasa Tsutakawa and the late sculptor and painter George Tsutakawa have individually made significant contributions to the artistic and cultural landscape in Seattle and, together, serve as models and inspiration for a generation of Asian American and other artists and musicians. Each has earned accolades in their chosen discipline: Gerard is a sculptor; Deems is a jazz pianist; Marcus is a composer and teacher; and Mayumi is arts administrator, curator and editor.

Reverend Patrinell Wright and Total Experience Gospel Choir—Soul of the Community

Total Experience Gospel Choir is a nationally and internationally known gospel singing group; they are hailed as one of the Pacific Northwest’s finest soulful ensembles. They perform at schools, penal institutions, festivals, public events, political events, churches and religious establishments as well as performing on radio and TV. The choir has engaged in spiritual pilgrimages, educational ventures and tours in 38 states, 5 continents and 22 countries.

Pastor Patrinell Wright is the founder and director of the Total Experience Gospel Choir. Her music career is quite extensive and she has received numerous awards, including: the Washington State Governors Ethnic Heritage Award for helping to preserve Black gospel music in our state; the Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award; and Edwin Pratt Award from the Urban League of Greater Seattle.

Invitation, by Claudia Castro Luna, Civic Poet

Read for Ampersand Live at Town Hall – November 12, 2015 


I invite you to come along on a bicycle ride the whip of the green river early September when its water teems with pink salmon and bank anglers dream their fishy dreams and you…rolling past wishing slack tide for the anglers and flood tide for the fish.

I invite you to lie on a blanket stretched under the heart shaped leaves of a Little Leaf Linden tree. Let breath yield to grass, branch, bark, release unaware your secret lusts. Pistil and stamen, flutter of wings, legs in shorts, vegetable sap. Ecology of desire, mid-summer heat, Volunteer Park.

I invite you to caramel city. A place where every cash register displays hand rolled,
hand-wrapped or neatly packed salted caramels luring your will power to ruin.

I invite you out to breakfast 6:30 am, Fisherman’s Terminal, fried oysters and a pile of hash browns. Between the large windows and boats ensconced in fog, invisible to the naked eye, marked only by a column, the architecture of life-times made and lost at sea.

I invite you to Alki point, a una noche de verano, mar y arena, luna y estrellas, suave
el aire sobre tu faz.

I invite you to buck the trend. Next time you pass someone by, resist the unfriendly pull
– don’t look away or down. Kaput indifference. Melt the freeze. Breach the gap.

I invite you to stand on a South Beacon Hill bus stop on a vaporous and chilly 40 something rainy winter’s day, and wait and wait and wait for a bus that’s again late, late, late.

I invite you to a house renovation project where your only job is to order the paint and so you visit a SODO paint store where fifteen minutes go by and no one behind the counter bothers to greet you, you don’t even get a sideways glance – others get called, receive their orders, ask questions. A large sign announces “Color Trends.” Invisibility is no paranormal trick on your part. You don’t ever choose to make yourself invisible. “Hey!” you want to shout, “Do you all want fries with that?”

I invite you to a party in Ballard where a woman expresses regret at hearing the news you’re moving to the south west corner of the map, “We’ll never see you again,” she says in a self congratulatory way. What you say is, “Oh, there is a whole bunch of us living down there having a good time, you should come down some time.” What you don’t say is, “Hey, do you want fries with that?”

I invite you to shop for grapes. “Taste the red ones,” says the man stocking produce.
You lean in to grab a bag …”NO! not those,” he says concerned, “Those are organic –
the regular ones are here!” pointing to a different stack. Taken aback you say nothing.
But you want to say, “Hey, do you want fries with that?”

I invite you to orbit emerald chaos at the Seattle Center satellite fountain. Watch water
then fall sparkle and splash, the way you wish your doubts would simply crash.

I invite you to Hillman City where strangers turn to greet you, sometimes with a smile.
I see you their gesture says, you, You, YOU. Tall oaks line this stretch of Rainier Avenue and leaves trail/splutter/flap after the 7 rambling downtown leaving behind periphery and heart.

Claudia Castro Luna