On Wednesday, April 4th, at The Rye Town Hilton,
six individuals and three organizations will be honored
for their contributions to the arts in Westchester
County. This year's awardees reflect the
breadth and depth of our cultural life. They come from
all corners of the County and are diverse, both in terms
of their backgrounds and their approach to the arts.
What they all do have in common is an outstanding
commitment to use the arts to improve their communities.
The awardees were selected from a large pool of public
nomination ballots by an extensive panel review process.
"The annual Arts Awards ceremony is the Westchester
Arts Council's most prestigious event," says
Westchester Arts Council Executive Director Janet T.
Langsam. "It gives us great pleasure to put a spotlight
on the individuals and organizations that make this such
a wonderful place to live."
Education: Individual Artist
Wilfredo Morel is a committed, natural leader who uses the arts as a
powerful force for building community. A native of the island
Dominique in the Caribbean, this sculptor and sociologist shares his
unique blend of talents and enthusiasm to provide the artistic spark
at Hudson River Healthcare/ Peekskill Community Health Center, where
he serves as Community Initiatives Coordinator. His after- school
programs are expanding the horizons of Westchester's
One recent project Mr. Morel initiated, "Doors
of the Future," encouraged children to imagine their futures by
painting their hopes and dreams on old wooden doors. "This project
was an imaginative way to move children from an attitude of 'I can't
go anywhere' to 'I'm really going places," says Mr. Morel.
Like all his projects, "Doors to the Future" went
beyond the walls of the health center to involve the whole
community. Mr. Morel pulls together all the resources of the
community, including artists, arts organizations, businesses, and
social service agencies to address important concerns. Recently he
led arts events to observe Black History Month, World AIDS Day and
Three Kings Day.