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  Culture Corner - Iowa Cultural Corridor Alliance Blog
ICCA Announces Larry Eckholt and Cultural Advocate Honorees
posted: Tuesday, January 04, 2011  Post Comment

Hello everyone! 

Please see below for information about this year's Larry Eckholt and Cultural Advocate Honorees: 

The Iowa Cultural Corridor Alliance (ICCA) Board of Directors is pleased to announce Mark Ginsberg as the recipient of the 2010 Larry Eckholt Award and James Kern as the recipient of the 2010 Cultural Advocate Award. 

The Eckholt Award is for a community member in the Southern part of the Corridor, while the Cultural Advocate Award is intended for a member of the Northern part of the Corridor. All 150 partners of ICCA were given the opportunity to nominate individuals for the honors. Final voting was completed by the ICCA Board of Directors. 

“These two awards honor individuals who exemplify passion, commitment, and advocacy to the cultural vitality of the Corridor,” noted Marcia Hughes, ICCA Board President. “The dedicated efforts of Mr. Ginsberg and Mr. Kern have significantly enriched the quality of life in their communities and the wider region. The ICCA Board is pleased to recognize them.”

Both awards will be presented during the 2011 ICCA Annual Meeting and Icky Honors, an event created to elevate the awareness of the artistic and cultural organizations in the Corridor and to celebrate excellence in innovation in programming and events of ICCA partners over the past year, at The Englert Theatre on Monday, January 31, 2011, at 6:30 p.m. 

Mark Ginsberg, president and owner of M.C. Ginsberg Inc., will be recognized as the 2010 Larry Eckholt Award honoree. Mr. Ginsberg has created something much more than a profitable business dedicated to the bottom line. Soon after buying his father's jewelry store in 1985, he established the M. C Ginsberg Fund to better serve the arts community in Iowa City through free exhibitions, public lectures, artist's workshops, and community arts events. Ginsberg is well known throughout the Corridor, founding the Iowa City Jazz Festival and serving as one of the leaders in Iowa City’s Tickle My Keys program, which placed pianos throughout downtown Iowa City for tourists and community members to play. Most recently, M.C. Ginsberg, Inc. was name one of the Ten Best Companies Supporting the Arts in America by Americans for the Arts. Celebrating the arts in Iowa is an initiative that Mark Ginsberg has made his life's pursuit. Past recipients of the Larry Eckholt Award include Dottie Ray, June Braverman, Bob Goodfellow, and Dan Brown. 

James (Jim) Kern, executive director of Brucemore, Inc., will be recognized as the 2010 Cultural Advocate Award honoree. After earning degrees in theatre and English, Mr. Kern began his career in the restaurant business, working in such positions as executive chef, maitre d’, and caterer. He served as an educator with a classroom focus on the arts, teaching speech, theatre, and English. While teaching at Cedar Rapids Washington High School, Mr. Kern cofounded the Patrons of the Performing Arts. Mr. Kern has directed some 85 productions for high schools, Theatre Cedar Rapids, and the Chicago City Theatre Company. He is founder and principal artistic director for the Classics at Brucemore and former director of development for Theatre Cedar Rapids. He served as Assistant Director of Brucemore for six years and then took over as Executive Director in 2007. Mr. Kern is chair of the Cedar Rapids Visual Arts Commission, a member of the Linn County Nonprofit Resource Center Board of Directors, a Trustee with Theatre Cedar Rapids, and member of the Cedar Rapids Convention and Visitor’s Bureau Board of Directors. Past recipients of the Cultural Advocate Award include Peggy Whitworth, Chuck Peters, Audrey Linge-Ovel, and Eliot Keller. 

Tickets for the 2011 Icky Honors are on sale now through The Englert Theatre box office. 

The 2011 Icky Honors are sponsored and supported by the Iowa City Press-Citizen, The Englert Theatre, Goodfellow Printing, Inc., and West Music. Additional support is provided by the Cedar Rapids Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Corridor Business Journal, and the Iowa City/Coralville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. More information regarding The Ickys can be found on ICCA’s website,

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