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Sac State to host annual art event


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Preludes Ceremony

Ryan Coogler's directorial feature debut, Fruitvale Station, won the Grand Jury and Audience awards at the Sundance Film Festival and took the Prize of the Future at Cannes. He's nominated in the Artist of the Year category.

Sacramento State alumnus and award-winning film director Ryan Coogler and Professor Crystal Olson will be up for recognition when members of the Arts & Business Council of Sacramento gather for the annual Preludes Arts & Business Awards ceremony. This year’s gathering is an evening event, running from 5-8 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 24, in Sac State’s University Union Ballroom.

Prelude to the Season is the Council’s celebration honoring the contributions to the arts by companies, organizations and individuals in a night of laughter, music, dinner and networking. Tickets are available at

Coogler, the former Hornet wide receiver whose film Fruitvale Station won the Grand Jury and Audience awards at the Sundance Film Festival and took the Prize of the Future at Cannes, is nominated in the Artist of the Year category. The other nominees are artist Gioia Fonda and Sacramento’s Poet Laureate Jeff Knorr, both of whom are Sacramento City College instructors.

Olson has been nominated as part of the Arts Educator of the Year category. She teaches courses in the Arts in Education Program and was coordinator of a series of Arts Resource Faires for educators, artists and community members. She also works with the College of Continuing Education as the instructor of record for programs such as Education through Music and Crocker Art Museum workshops. The other nominees are Kurt Johnson, director of B Street Theatre’s Studio for Young Actors; and Stacey Shelnut-Hendrick, director of Education at the Crocker Art Museum.

Other categories include Arts/Business Partnership, Arts Journalism and Lifetime Achievement.

The event will feature keynote speaker Jennifer Whitney, former television journalist and now communications director for the Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission.

Entertainment includes performances by ensembles from Sac State’s Dance Program, Exquisite Corps, Mumbo Gumbo, and a message from KFBK radio’s Kitty O’Neal. Congresswoman Doris Matsui will provide the welcoming address.

“Sacramento State is proud to host this event that recognizes our local arts participants and supporters,” says College of Arts and Letters Dean Edward Inch. “The University’s own extensive arts programs and events help reinforce the community’s commitment.”

For more about Sacramento State’s art offerings, visit For media assistance, call the University’s Public Affairs office at (916) 278-6156.

– Craig Koscho