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Category Archives: DHA


For immediate release

April 18, 2014

Geoffrey Fattah, 801.245.7205
Communications Director, Utah Dept. of Heritage and Arts

For Technical Information:  Alycia Aldrich, 801.245-7226




SALT LAKE CITY – About two hundred eighty-five middle and high school students from all over Utah will compete at the annual Utah History Day State Competition next Wednesday, April 23, 2014. Held at Thanksgiving Point, Lehi, this rigorous academic event is the culmination of months of work for these students, who were the top finishers at nine regional events held statewide in February and March.

The contestants range in age from 6th to 12th grade, and represent a broad range of Utah communities.  In addition to students from the Wasatch Front, contestants will travel from San Juan, Washington, Cache, Duchesne, Carbon, Sanpete, and Beaver Counties to participate. State winners qualify to represent Utah at the National History Day competition in June, held in Washington, D.C.

Centering their historical research on the annual theme “Rights and Responsibilities in History,” these students have learned to conduct real historical research and analysis, and developed their reading, literacy, critical thinking, and presentation skills.  Students will present their work in one of five formats: museum-style exhibit, documentary film, historical performance, original website, or research paper. This competition will showcase student research on topics ranging from slavery and women’s rights to Japanese internment and the Downwinders of Utah, and hundreds more.

“I used to hate history,” stated Tabiona high school senior MacKenzie Wagner, a four-time state winner, “but now it’s my favorite subject.”  Wagner appreciates how the History Day program offers students much greater depth than a typical lecture in class. “You begin to see the connections in history and understand cause and effect.” She also finds that the skills developed through the History Day process transfer to many other subjects, especially Science and English.  Teachers appreciate how the History Day model offers a rich integrated learning experience and helps them to meet a large number of Common Core standards.

Utah History Day (formerly called Utah History Fair) has operated continuously in Utah for more than 30 years and is the official National History Day affiliate program for the state.  The program was originally developed and housed at Utah State University.  This year, however, it was transferred to the Utah Division of State History in Salt Lake City. ”We could not be happier to provide a new home for Utah’s National History Day program,” states Brad Westwood, Director of the Division of State History. “Students from any community in Utah can participate in this program, which will cultivate a lifelong appreciation of history and heritage in our young people.”  Legislation supporting the transfer was passed during the 2014 legislative session. A ceremonial bill signing with Governor Gary Herbert will be held in May.

For more information, contact Wendy Rex-Atzet, Utah History Day Coordinator.  801-245-7253,

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The 9th Annual Governor’s Native American Summit: “Building a Sustainable Future Together”

The Annual Native American Summit began in 2006 at the request of then Governor Jon M. Huntsman, Jr., as a way of facilitating a discussion between government, business and tribal leaders to develop solutions to various challenges that American Indians living in Utah face.

Every year since 2006, the Utah Division of Indian Affairs sponsors the Annual Governor’s Native American Summit bringing together Utah Tribal Nations, community members, educators, organizations, students, Legislative members, and public officials for a two-day event.

This year, we are celebrating the 9th Annual Native American Summit at Utah Valley University on July 30-31, 2014 in Orem, UT.  Mark your calendars and come join us in Building a Sustainable Future Together!

2014 Governor’s Leadership in the Arts Awards To Be Presented at Mountain West Arts Conference – April 10, 2014

For immediate release                      


10 April 2014                          


2014 Governor’s Leadership in the Arts Awards

To Be Presented at Mountain West Arts Conference


SALT LAKE CITY — Governor Gary R. Herbert and Utah Arts & Museums have announced the recipients of the 2014 Governor’s Leadership in the Arts Awards:

  • Spy Hop Productions, Education Leadership in the Arts Award
  • Shirley Ririe, Co-Founder, Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company, Individual Leadership in the Arts Award
  • City of St. George (Mayor Jon Pike), Community Leadership in the Arts Award
  • Timpanogos Storytelling Institute, Organization Leadership in the Arts Award

“I’m pleased to congratulate this year’s recipients of the Governor’s Leadership in the Arts Awards,” said Governor Herbert. “They have diligently promoted the arts, improving the lives of Utahns with their visionary leadership and dedication. They have bettered the education of our children, the economy of our state, and the quality of life in our communities.”

The Governor’s Leadership in the Arts Awards recipients will be honored at a luncheon during the Mountain West Arts Conference, May 1, 2014, at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center in West Valley City.

Spy Hop Productions’ mission is to mentor young people in the digital media arts to help them find their voices, tell their stories, and be empowered to affect positive change. Founded in 1999, Spy Hop provides more than 1,600 youth between the ages of 7 and 21 with hands-on and mentorship-based programs in film, music, audio, and digital design. The organization has received numerous awards, including the Peabody Award in television broadcasting. Both the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts consider Spy Hop to be one of the country’s leading youth development organizations.

Shirley Ririe is a national leader in the dance world. She served on the committee that developed National Standards for Arts Education K-12 in 1994, as the U.S. delegate to Dance and the Child International, on the National Advisory Committee for Young Audiences, and as a consultant on programs for PBS. During her 35-year performing career, she performed lead roles in choreography by Jose Limon, Helen Tamiris, Alwin Nikolais, Murray Louis, and Merce Cunningham. Ririe has traveled the world as a guest teacher and performer, and has choreographed more than 100 works, both for the company she co-founded, Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company, and other companies.

The City of St. George, under the leadership of Mayor Jon Pike, has actively supported, encouraged, and funded art throughout the community. Through the St. George Arts Council, awards are given to artists and arts organizations. The city has overseen a historic water-walk winding through town, threading its way among sculptures depicting figures involved in the city’s creation. The city owns and operates the St. George Art Museum, sponsors a free outdoor concert series, and hosts the St. George Art Festival, which boasts 110 participating artists and more than 30,000 guests and tourists. St. George recently purchased a historic movie theater, which will be transformed into an arts complex.

The Timpanogos Storytelling Institute began 25 years ago with a festival that drew a few hundred people. Today, the three-day Timpanogos Storytelling Festival surpasses the size of any storytelling festival in the nation — including the National Storytelling Festival — with an audience of more than 28,000 people. The institute offers week-long intensive retreats, helps bring national storytellers to perform for the community several times a year, and holds a national-level storytelling conference each spring. The institute has fostered respect for the art of storytelling on local, state, national, and global levels.

The Mountain West Arts Conference is one of the largest gatherings of the Utah arts community, including artists, administrators, educators, students, and arts supporters. The 8th annual conference will be a day of networking, workshops, and performances. The conference will feature sessions on a number of topics — including youth engagement, grant writing, arts in rural communities, individual giving trends, and hands-on art — from presenters with regional and national expertise. Keynote speaker Doug Borwick, Ph.D. will discuss building sustainable “mission models” for the arts, emphasizing a focus on relationships with the community.

“The conference is a chance to gather, network, celebrate accomplishments, learn new skills, enjoy artistic experiences, and be informed about regional and national issues,” said Lynnette Hiskey, Director of Utah Arts & Museums. “Each year we look forward to it, and each year we come away with a fresh, energized outlook.”

Luncheon reservations and conference registrations can be made online Registration is $95 for the full conference, including the Governor’s Leadership in the Arts Awards luncheon, or $55 for the luncheon alone. Group and student rates are available. Educators can receive points toward Utah Educator’s License recertification. Table sponsorship opportunities are available; call Lynnette Hiskey at 801.236.7551. For more information, visit or phone 801.236.7555.

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Utahns Encouraged to Participate in National Volunteer Recognition Week – April 8, 2014

For Immediate Release April 8, 2014

Utahns Encouraged to Participate in National Volunteer Recognition Week

Salt Lake City – Utah will join in National Volunteer Week, a nationwide effort to honor and celebrate ordinary people doing extraordinary things to improve communities across the country. Observed between April 6-12 this year, it highlights the enormous contributions that volunteers make every day.

Established in 1974, National Volunteer Week focuses national attention on the impact and power of volunteerism as an integral aspect of our civic leadership. The week draws the support and endorsement of the President and Congress, governors, mayors and municipal leaders, as well as corporate and community groups across the country.

“National Volunteer Week is about inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities,” UServeUtah Executive Director LaDawn Stoddard said. “We can never say ‘thank you’ enough to the amazing individuals who give selflessly of their time to make a difference in our state.”

Utahns continue to demonstrate their strong commitment to improving local communities in a variety of ways through volunteerism, ranking Utah #1 in the nation for volunteering eight years running by the Corporation for National and Community Service. The most recent data shows more than 970,000 volunteers served approximately 165 million total hours, which is the equivalent of over 79,000 full-time employees.

The total estimated economic value of volunteer service in Utah was about $3 billion based on the Independent Sector’s annual estimate of the average value of a volunteer hour, which is $22.14.

UServeUtah encourages everyone to find a way to say “thank you” to the volunteers that are making a difference in Utah communities every day.

For more information and ideas on ways to participate in National Volunteer Week visit the UServeUtah website at
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You Got SERVED! Pay it FORWARD! Pass it on!

Get involved in your community and impact the lives of others by volunteering! Then challenge your friends and family to do the same.

It’s easy to SERVE your friends. Just print out the “You Got SERVED” card and start handing them out!

Find an Opportunity:

Finding a way to contribute to the community is easy. Check out this list to find an opportunity in your own backyard. Volunteer opportunities range from onetime events to weekly commitments and everything in between.

Share your Story:

After you and your friends and family serve, come back to our website and share your story.  Tell us how service has made a mark in your life or the lives of those in your community. We are always on the hunt for stories to use on social media, in our annual report, in our newsletter and even in radio or TV public service announcements!

Print “Pay it Forward” Card


Utah Archaeology Week 2014

During Utah Archaeology Week you can learn about Utah’s past and have fun while doing it.

Statewide events include:

  • Open house at the Rio Grande Depot with educational activities for kids
  • Annual poster contest
  • Lectures and paper presentations
  • Tours of archaeological sites

Utah Mayors to join Nationwide Effort to Recognize Impact of National Service

News advisory: Mar 31, 2014
Utah Mayors to join Nationwide Effort to Recognize Impact of National Service
Salt Lake City – On April 1, Mayors across the state will join with more than 1,200 mayors across the country in a day of recognition to highlight the impact of National Service in local communities.
The following Utah mayors listed below are participating in a variety of ways including, signing a declaration of recognition, holding recognition events, and sending thank you cards to national service participants who serve in their communities:
Alta: Tom Pollard
Bluffdale: Derk Timothy
Cedar City: Maile Wilson
Cottonwood Heights: Kelvyn Cullimore Jr.
Draper: Troy Walker
Farr West: Z. Lee Dickmore
Harrisville: Bruce Richins
Herriman: Carmen Freeman
Holladay: Robert Dahle
Hyrum: Stephanie Miller
Kaysville: Steve Hiatt
Logan: Craig Peterson
Midvale: JoAnn Seghini
Moab: David Sakrison
Murray: Ted Eyre
North Ogden: Brent Taylor
Ogden: Mike Caldwell
Orem: Richard Brunst
Pleasant View: Toby Mileski
Price: Joe Piccolo
Providence: Don Calderwood
Provo: John Curtis
Riverton: William Applegarth
River Heights: James Brackner
Riverdale: Norm Searle
Roy: Willard Cragun
Salt Lake City: Ralph Becker
Salt Lake County: Ben McAdams
Sandy: Tom Dolan
Smithfield: Darrell Simmons
South Jordan: David Alvord
South Ogden: James Minster
South Salt Lake: Cherie Wood
St. George: John Pike
Taylorsville: Larry Johnson
Washington Terrace: Mark Allen
In Salt Lake County, Mayor Ben McAdams will recognize the impacts of national service through a declaration that will be presented at the Salt Lake County Council meeting on April 8, 4 p.m. in the county council chambers.
Across the nation mayors are increasingly turning to national service and volunteerism as a cost-effective strategy to address city challenges at a time of fiscal constraint.  The Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service is bipartisan effort to recognize the positive impact of National Service in cities, to thank those who serve, and to encourage citizens to give back to their communities.
For more information on the Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service, including background and a list of participating mayors, visit
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“Plural and Partial: Tracing the Intergenerational Self” at Rio Gallery – March 20, 2014

For immediate release                      

20 March 2014                          


“Plural and Partial: Tracing the Intergenerational Self” at Rio Gallery


SALT LAKE CITY — Utah Arts & Museums announces the opening of the exhibition “Plural and Partial: Tracing the Intergenerational Self” at the Rio Gallery, located in the historic Rio Grande Depot at 300 S. Rio Grande Street, Salt Lake City. The show runs March 28 – April 30, 2014. Gallery hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. An artist reception will be held on April 18 from 6 – 9 p.m. for Salt Lake Gallery Stroll. The gallery will also open April 5 and 19 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. in conjunction with the Winter Market.

“Plural and Partial: Tracing the Intergenerational Self” is an exhibition of seven contemporary artists — Valerie Atkisson, Liberty Blake, Angela Ellsworth, Jann Haworth, Amy Jorgensen, Annie Kennedy, and Shawn Rossiter — whose work investigates the making of identity that draws upon the plurality of the self and the span of partial influence that is made from generation to generation.

These artists examine the self through an intergenerational lens; in particular, the relationship between mother and daughter. Some mothers are both of blood and religious inheritance, such as Angela Ellsworth’s reference to her ancestor Eliza R. Snow. Some mothers are political, such as the suffragist and cultural references found in Amy Jorgensen’s “Well Behaved Women.” Some artists are linked more intimately to their own mothers, such as Valerie Atkisson and Annie Kennedy. Jann Haworth’s work is varied and at time makes reference to those visual memories we inherit, either through art history or personal experience. For Liberty Blake and Shawn Rossiter, their work negotiates the exchange that is part of making work within a cooperative, as a team, straddling two individual voices, two separate countries. Incidentally, two artists included in the exhibition are mother and daughter — Jann Haworth and Liberty Blake.

Works in collage, cut paper and fabric, sewn sculpture, and video are all used to explore the ways we imprint ourselves on one another and the many ways we consistently appropriate our inherited identities into ourselves. “We’re excited to be able to exhibit such a wide breadth of media from fantastic artists exploring a topic that is relevant to all of us,” said Utah Arts & Museums Director Lynnette Hiskey.

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62nd Annual State History Conference | Sept 25-27, 2014

The dates for the 62nd Annual State History Conference have been set. Mark your calendars now so you can attend.

When: September 25th – September 27th, 2014 in Salt Lake City, Utah @ The City Library and The Leonardo

Technology has helped people live and thrive in Utah for over 12,000 years. In order to understand and remember the development of technology in Utah, this year’s Utah State History conference will focus on Utah Technology through Time.

The conference will be tentatively organized into three tracks:
• The emergence of Utah’s high tech industry, 1950s–present
• Utah industry, technology, and enterprise in the 19th and 20th centuries
• Prehistoric technology in the region of Utah

Have a proposal you’d like to submit for consideration? Submit your proposal here!

Nominate someone for a Utah State History Award.

Submit a paper for the Helen Z. Papanikolas Award for the Best Student Paper on Utah Women’s History.

Utah #1 IN VOLUNTEERISM FOR 8TH YEAR – Dec. 16, 2013

Volunteering in Utah – Results of National Study

New research released by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) through the Volunteering and Civic Life in America 2013 report ranks Utah as the #1 volunteering state in the nation with 47.7% of adults volunteering, an increase of 6.8 percentage points from last year. This volunteering rate is significantly above the national average of 26.5%. Provo, Ogden and Salt Lake ranked in the top 5 in their respective city categories.

Volunteers in Utah demonstrated their commitment to improving their communities in a variety of ways last year and again earned the #1 ranking among the 50 states, according to the Volunteering and Civic Life in America (VCLA) report released today by CNCS in partnership with the National Council on Citizenship, the U.S. Census Bureau, and the Bureau for Labor Statistics. More than 970,000 volunteers served approximately 165 million total hours, which is the equivalent of over 79,000 full-time employees, 10,000 more than last year.

The spirit of Utah’s volunteerism is exemplified in individual cities also. The report also ranks the nation’s largest cities and metropolitan areas for their volunteering and civic engagement rates. The city of Provo leads the nation with the highest volunteer rate in the country at 56.5% for mid-sized cities with Ogden a close second. Salt Lake City ranked 5th in the metropolitan cities category.

More data is available in these press kits and on the web at

VCLA Press Conference Alert
VCLA Press Release
Utah Volunteerism Data Charts