OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Arts Council is accepting nominations for the 38th annual Governor's Arts Awards through Friday, August 9. The awards honor individuals and organizations whose efforts have impacted the arts in their communities or throughout the state. The governor presents the awards during a special ceremony at the state Capitol in the fall.

Oklahoma Arts Council Executive Director Amber Sharples said the Governor's Arts Awards is an opportunity to bring recognition to deserving individuals and organizations.

"Oklahoma's arts and cultural industry thrives because of the efforts of those who go above and beyond for the arts in their communities and schools. The Governor's Arts Awards is our way of acknowledging their selfless contributions," Sharples said.

Awards are presented in several categories:

Governor's Award - recognizes individuals for longtime leadership and significant contributions to the arts across Oklahoma.

Business in the Arts Award - recognizes businesses/corporations who exhibit outstanding support of the arts in Oklahoma. This award was created in memory of Earl Sneed, prominent arts advocate.

Media in the Arts Award - recognizes an individual member in the media who demonstrates commitment to the arts in Oklahoma documented through public awareness support and fairness, initiative, creativity and professionalism in reporting. This award was created in memory of Bill Crawford, veteran professional journalist.

Arts in Education Award - recognizes an individual, organization, school, educator or group for their outstanding leadership and service in the arts benefitting youth and/or arts in education.

Community Service Award - recognizes individuals for significant contributions to the arts in specific Oklahoma communities in the areas of leadership and volunteerism.

George Nigh Public Service in the Arts Award - recognizes an Oklahoma government official for outstanding support of the arts.

Nominees must be current residents of the State of Oklahoma and living in Oklahoma full time, or organizations/businesses that work in and for the benefit of Oklahoma. Previous recipients of the Governor's Award are not eligible. Recipients will be selected by members of the Governor's Arts Award Selection Committee. The committee is comprised of members of the Governor-appointed Oklahoma Arts Council board.

To submit a nomination visit the Council's website, arts.ok.gov.

For more information contact Joel Gavin, director of marketing and communications, at (405) 521-2037 or joel.gavin@arts.ok.gov.