Medal of Arts award which reads City of Raleigh North Carolina Arts Commission

Raleigh Medal of Arts

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2021 Raleigh Medal of Arts Awards

The Raleigh Medal of Arts is awarded for extraordinary achievement in the practice or support of local arts. The Arts Commission’s Raleigh Medal of Arts awards program is funded by the City of Raleigh, individuals, and business sponsors. 

Based on the National Medal of Arts program, the Raleigh award was inaugurated in 1984 by the Raleigh Arts Commission so that excellence in the arts could be given special recognition. The Raleigh Medal of Arts is the City’s highest arts honor.

View past Raleigh Medal of Arts winners

2021 Raleigh Medal of Arts Awards

Students and their instructor Debra Austin pose with a giant replica of the Medal of Arts award

The City of Raleigh Arts Commission selected five individuals and one organization for extraordinary achievement in the practice or support of local arts in 2020. In addition to celebrating the awardees, the virtual awards ceremony includes performances by local music favorites The Raleigh Boychoir, the North Carolina Master Chorale, and Jacqueline Saed Wolborsky from the North Carolina Symphony.

Watch the virtual ceremony below

Event Program (PDF 8.72 MB)

2021 Raleigh Medal of Arts Awards


Individual Awardees
  • Debra Austin, Founding Member and Ballet Master, Carolina Ballet
  • Betsy Buford, Cultural ambassador for Raleigh, Wake County and the state of North Carolina
  • Grant Llewellyn, Music Director, North Carolina Symphony
  • Eleanor Oakley, Executive Director, United Arts of Raleigh and Wake County (retired)
  • Jeremy C. Tucker, Artistic Director, Raleigh Boychoir
Raleigh Medal of Arts “Arts Hero” Award

Organization Beltline to Broadway (formerly RDU On Stage) receives this award for its focused support for arts organizations, individual artists, and community members during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis and their informational and educational support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Learn more about the 2020 awardees



Belva Parker
Arts Program Director 

Parks, Recreation and Cultural Resources
Service Categories:
Raleigh Arts



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