Arts Advocacy Day: Democracyworks and Hawkins Award essayists on why it matters

By James Palmarini posted 03-17-2014 15:23


Winter is finally over. Well, almost. And with spring and my tulips hopefully blooming comes my favorite advocacy event of the year: National Arts Advocacy Day in Washington, D.C. on March 24-25. Advocates from throughout the country will come together to “make the case” for arts and art education, with one day dedicated towards intense training in the issues before Congress and another to Capitol Hill visits. This year, the Educational Theatre Association will be well represented, with twenty-two members from nine states attending. That number features both adults and students, including our Democracyworks student essay winner and three State Chapter Director Hawkins Award winners. Democracyworks, now in its fifth year, asked students to write about what advocacy on behalf of theatre education they had done recently. The Hawkins Award, named for the later Florida State Chapter Director, Daron Hawkins, is a new funding program intended to help promote theatre advocacy by EdTA members. This year, State Chapter Directors were asked why attending Arts Advocacy Day would be a beneficial experience for them.  

We’ve posted the winning Democracyworks essay, along with two runner ups, and all three of our Hawkins Award winners, in the Advocacy Library. They are:


Emily Zauzmer, Democracyworks winner, Troupe 5900, Upper Dublin High School, Fort Washington, Pennsylvania
Madeline Calais, Democracyworks first runner up, Troupe 2980, Memorial Senior High School,  Houston, Texas
Hannah Maria Beatty, Democracyworks second runner up, Troupe 6141, Providence School of Jacksonville (Florida)


Jeff Hall, Hawkins Award winner, Oregon State Chapter Director, Jesuit High School, Portland
Sharon Chadwick, Hawkins Award winner, Nevada State Chapter Director, Liberty High School, Henderson
Helen Duranleau-Brennan, Hawkins Award winner, Iowa State Chapter Director, Davenport (Iowa) North High School