Stephen F. Austin State University

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Dean's Circle recognizes award recipients, sponsors

October 28, 2016 - Robbie Goodrich
Current and former recipients of the Jack and Naioma Ledbetter Dean's Award in Music thank the couple for their generosity and contributions to their education by presenting the Ledbetters with an appreciation plaque at this year's Winners' Circle event. Pictured are, from left, Mikayla Stillwell, 2016 recipient; Emily Milius, 2013 recipient; Dr. A.C. "Buddy" Himes, dean, College of Fine Arts; Amanda Sheriff, 2015 recipient; Joshua Zinn, 2012 recipient; and Jack and Naioma Ledbetter.
NACOGDOCHES, TEXAS - Members of the Stephen F. Austin State University College of Fine Arts Dean's Circle recently recognized its 2016 award recipients at the annual Spotlight on the Arts and Winners' Circle reception held in The Old Tobacco Warehouse in downtown Nacogdoches.

This year's recipients, who were announced and honored in April, were re-introduced at the reception. Recipients included Kaylee J. Bruggeman, Katy art education major, recipient of the Ed and Gwen Cole Dean's Award in Art; Mikayla E. Stillwell, Desoto music education major, recipient of the Jack and Naioma Ledbetter Dean's Award in Music; Allison A. Adams, Gladewater music education major, recipient of the Dr. Robert Sidnell Memorial Dean's Award in Music Education; and Taylor R. Dobbs, Baytown theatre major, recipient of the George and Peggy Schmidbauer Dean's Award in Theatre.

In addition to recognizing the accomplishments of students, the Dean's Circle is also focused on recognizing excellence among fine arts faculty. The Dean's Circle realized the College of Fine Arts' first ever endowed professorship last year, and its first recipient, Dr. Charles Gavin, professor of horn and chamber music at SFA, was also honored at the event.

Each student recipient was selected by the faculty of their respective schools on the basis of their potential to further develop their artistic goals and serve as role models, according to Dr. A.C. "Buddy" Himes, dean of the College of Fine Arts.

The Dean's Awards not only recognize the recipients for what they have already accomplished, but the awards are also designed to inspire them to reach deep from within to aspire to a higher level of excellence, Himes explained. The awards were established by the Dean's Circle, an external support organization of community members founded in 2008 and "dedicated, in part, to nurturing potential young artists within the College of Fine Arts," Himes said.

This year's Winners' Circle also featured the first-ever Fine Arts Faculty Spotlight, which included a camera drone exhibition by Chris Talbot, director of the SFA School of Art; a Sculpture For All exhibition by Jeffie Brewer, School of Art; How To Make a CD Recording exhibition by Dr. Deb Scott, School of Music; and a Dressing the Stars costume exhibition by Angela Bacarisse, School of Theatre.

Student award recipients Bruggeman and Dobbs presented exhibitions of artwork and theatrical scenic design, respectively. Stillwell and Adams performed.

Program sponsors were recognized at the event. Those included Cal-Tex Lumber Company, Nacogdoches Medical Center, Cecil and Gloria Settle, First Bank & Trust East Texas, The Old Tobacco Warehouse, Nacogdoches Memorial Health, Regions Bank, The Daily Sentinel, The Sidnell Family, CBH Insurance Agency and the Nacogdoches Film Festival. The SFA Hospitality Administration Program provided catering.

The annual fall celebration serves as a membership drive and fundraiser for the Dean's Circle. For information about the Dean's Circle, contact Himes at (936) 486-2801.