Michigan Humanities is pleased to announce the award winners for the 2020 Michigan Humanities Award. The winner come from across the state: Ann Arbor, Detroit, Holland, St. Ignace and Pickford, showing the range of the wonderful work being done all across our state.

“As we prepared to host an in-person event in May, 2020, our plans were halted in early March because of the COVID-19 virus. We proceeded with the call for nominations during this challenging time, and decided to share the Michigan Humanities Awards in a new format. In partnership with the team from Under the Radar Michigan, we’ve created a virtual program that allows us to honor the award winners and also keep everyone safe. We are thrilled with the way the show has come together, and with the award winners that the committee selected for 2020. We hope that everyone enjoyed our awards presentation, and that we are able to celebrate in person in 2021.” said Shelly Hendrick Kasprzycki, President & CEO of Michigan Humanities.

Michigan Humanities Awards was presented live on Facebook on Thursday, September 17, and can be viewed, along with additional interviews with the award winners on Comcast ONDemand, on our website (www.michiganhumanities.org) and on social media, beginning on Monday, September 21, 2020. Viewing is immediately available on Facebook.com/MichiganHumanities, no log-in required.

Awards are selected from three different categories, and nominations from all over the state of Michigan were submitted.  A panel of current and former board members, MH staff, and Humanities professionals voted on the winners for each category. These are the categories and the winners:

Outstanding Humanities Supporter – Organization or Individual
Recognizes organization or individual that have made a lasting contribution to the cultural life of their communities or our state through their active support of and involvement in promoting public humanities.

  • Willis Patterson and Our Own Thing Chorale, Ann Arbor, Michigan
  • M.L. Liebler, Wayne State University

Humanities Champion of the Year – Individual
The person whose contributions result in outstanding public humanities impact in their community and in our state. An example would be humanities person (teacher, scholar, librarian, cultural leader) who has creatively and successfully brought humanities to the public forum.

  • Peter Middleton and Greg Dykhouse, Black River Public School

Community Impact Partner of the Year
Universities, schools, libraries, museums, community centers and organizations who have brought to life a book, humanities project, discussion or other humanities programs in an innovative or creative way, serving their community and our state. They have championed the value of public humanities and made a lasting contribution to the cultural life of Michigan.

  • The Museum of Ojibwa Culture

Humanities Champion of the Year 2020 –
Posthumous Award to Ann Marie Smith,
Librarian at the Pickford Community Library, Pickford, Michigan
An award was presented to this very special community member for her work in the humanities at her library in Pickford, Michigan.

Watch the Michigan Humanities Awards 2020 on Facebook now: https://www.facebook.com/MichiganHumanities/videos/652668542321607 or on YouTube.

Support for this program is generously provided by:

Founder’s Brewery
Wayne State University
Maner Costerisan
MSU Federal Credit Union
Michigan Humanities Board of Directors
Delta Dental
Grand Valley State University
Library of Michigan
Access – Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services
Public Policy Associates
Michigan Humanities Emeritus Board Members
Under the Radar – Michigan team!