Can you think of an individual or organization who makes a positive impact on local arts and culture? The Arts Council for Long Beach announced that nominations for its annual State of the Arts awards are now open and wants you, yes you (all of you) to nominate an arts supporter who fits the bill and deserves some recognition.

This year, the ACLB is making an extra effort to push out the announcement, considering over the past three years only 20 to 30 nominations have arrived in the organization’s inbox on average, said Griselda Suarez, ACLB’s executive director. The nomination process has been streamlined since 2016 with the goal of making it more accessible to the Long Beach community.

While past awards have largely been given to visual arts-focused people and organizations, Suarez commented that last year’s list of awardees was especially diverse in artistic disciplines—from the art of drag performance, think longtime LGBTQ community member, Jewels, to dance, with Jose Diaz’ work providing dance lessons to low-income families—and the ACLB is hoping to continue that trend.

There are three categories you can use to describe the arts advocates in your life, whether they’ve added a few stitches to the city’s cultural quilt or an entire square:

The James H. Ackerman Arts Philanthropist award honors a person “who exemplifies the spirit of giving through extraordinary support of the arts in Long Beach,” as in someone who lives and breathes the notion that the city is truly a better place because of the art-related happenings here and does everything they can to support this.

The Incite/Insight Arts Award can honor a person, organization or group that offers “an original perspective within the arts community.” Cambodia Town, Inc., for example—one of a handful of people and orgs recognized in 2018 with this honor—was awarded for having put on the annual Cambodia Town Culture Festival since 2009.

The Creative Economy Leader, a person, organization or group, adds to the “creative economic development of Long Beach through the arts sector.” Last year, the organizer of LB Open Studio Tour, Lisa Wibroe, was celebrated for helping introduce the community to local artists in their workspaces.

The last and most coveted award, the State of the Arts Award, is not selected from a pool of nominations, but by a committee and the ACLB.

The deadline to submit nominations is Friday, Aug. 9. Submit one per category through this form. For more info on State of the Arts, visit

Those selected from nominations will be recognized at the ACLB’s annual State of the Arts event, in partnership with the Office of the Mayor, on Friday, Oct. 11 at 6 p.m. at The Scottish Rite Event Center; 855 Elm. Ave.

Asia Morris is a Long Beach native covering arts and culture for the Long Beach Post. You can reach her @hugelandmass on Twitter and Instagram and at [email protected].