Recipients of the 2021 Governor’s Awards for the Arts

For Immediate Release

January 6, 2021

Bismarck, ND – Governor Doug Burgum selected the recipients of the 2021 Governor’s Awards for the Arts, from 27 nominations. The six selected are as follows: Arts in Education: Dr. JoAnn Miller (Fargo); Arts Organization: Minot Area Council of the Arts (Minot); Individual Achievement: Melissa Gordan (Bismarck) and David Trottier (Rugby); Individual Cultural Heritage: Rex Cook (Dickinson); and Private Business: Enderlin Municipal Fine Arts Association with Maryhill Manor (Enderlin).

The Governor’s Awards for the Arts were established in 1977 as a way of recognizing individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to the arts throughout the state. Recipients are chosen for their efforts to expand arts opportunities to new audiences, create an appreciation for North Dakota’s cultural heritage, make the arts more central to education and an integral part of community life, as well as the length of service within the state. The nomination categories are Arts in Education, Arts Organization, Individual Cultural Heritage, Individual Achievement, and Private Business. Awards are given to the top candidates, regardless of the category they represent.

The online awards ceremony honoring this year’s outstanding recipients will be held on Wednesday, February 3 from 6:30 to 8:00pm. The public is welcome to participate in this wonderful celebration of the arts in North Dakota. This event is free; registration is required. For more information and to register visit

This event is sponsored by the Office of the Governor and the North Dakota Council on the Arts.


The North Dakota Council on the Arts is the state agency responsible for the support and development of the arts throughout North Dakota and is funded by the state legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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