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2019 Commonwealth Awards Finalists
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2019 Award Recipients

Congratulations to the 2019 Commonwealth Award recipients:

  • Boston String Academy, for its exceptional creative youth development work inspired by El Sistema – an effective intensive music education philosophy that utilizes classical music as a vehicle for personal transformation and social change.
  • Mass Audubon, for protecting our state’s natural landscapes and wildlife and ensuring nature remains accessible to all. A nationally recognized environmental education leader, Mass Audubon offers thousands of programs that get more than 225,000 kids and adults outdoors to experience the natural world every year. It is also a leader in Mass Cultural Council Universal Participation (UP) Initiative.
  • Provincetown Art Association & Museum, for its unique legacy of groundbreaking exhibitions and programming, passion for removing barriers to participation, and commitment to engaging young people through the visual arts.
  • The Care Center, for bringing the power of education, arts and culture to youth and their families in Holyoke. This creative youth development program is helping to break the cycle of poverty and create an economically vibrant city through a rich, humanities-based curriculum for teen mothers.


2019 Commonwealth Awards finalists include:

  • Aquinnah Cultural Center, for maintaining an vital role in their community with partnerships that preserve, interpret, and document the Aquinnah Wampanoag self-defined history, culture, and civic contributions.
  • Eileen McCaffery, Community Music School of Springfield, for her dedication to changing lives through music. Community Music School brings together people of different ages, abilities, cultural backgrounds and economic circumstances to make music in an environment that respects diversity and encourages creativity.
  • Elevated Thought, for providing Greater Lawrence’s youth with opportunities that encourage artistic expression as the means for creative solutions to social issues through creative youth development.
  • Fitchburg Art Museum, for playing a vital role in the cultural life of the Central New England region and engaging its community with efforts to stimulate the local creative economy and make the arts more accessible and meaningful to a wider, more diverse public.
  • Kate Maguire, Berkshire Theatre Group, for her leadership to ensuring the health and vitality of the performing arts across Berkshire County. Maguire oversees the development, production and presentation of theatre, music and the performing arts on multiple stages. These represent a priceless cultural resource for the community.
  • Lee Blake, New Bedford Historical Society, for her instrumental role and leadership in documenting and celebrating the history, legacy, and presence of African Americans, Cape Verdeans, Native Americans, West Indians, and other people of color in New Bedford.
  • Manship Artists Residency + Studios, for its dedication to preserving artist Paul Manship’s historic property and its landscape, creating a rich new cultural experience for the residents of Cape Ann and New England.
  • Natick Center Cultural District, for maintaining an active role in their community with partnerships that expand access to the arts for its residents and visitors. This Cultural District offers a friendly experience filled with the rich heritage of a classic New England town, while celebrating a vibrant, contemporary fusion of art, culture, and commerce.
  • Nina Zannieri, Paul Revere Memorial Association, for her leadership and commitment to ensure that two of Boston’s oldest, most important historic homes are preserved and welcoming to all. Zannieri led efforts that transformed the experience at the Paul Revere House, making it fully accessible for current and future generations.

Also at the ceremony, Mass Cultural Council will present the 2019 JFK Commonwealth Award to the Berkshire Eagle for demonstrating the enduring civic value of community journalism.

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