Wayne Lawson was a true arts advocate

Photo of Wayne Lawson

Wayne Lawson was a pivotal figure in arts leadership for the state, and served as the fourth Executive Director of the Ohio Arts Council for nearly 30 years. Even in retirement, Lawson continued his advocacy, serving as a professor of public policy and arts administration at The Ohio State University, advising the Greater Columbus Arts Council, and serving on a number of arts and cultural boards.

“With Wayne Lawson’s passing, Ohio has lost a unique, visionary cultural leader and a tireless, life-long champion of the state’s creative sector. As an administrator, an advocate, an academic, and an ambassador, Wayne’s mark on the arts eco-system statewide, nationally, and internationally has been pivotal and indelible. His keen insights, irreverent wit, and limitless energy for all manner of creative pursuits will be profoundly missed,” says CreativeOhio Board President Jack Jackson.

Lawson received a number of awards for his longtime service to the arts in Ohio, including the 2011 Irma Lazarus Award, the Gary Young Award for outstanding leadership in arts administration from the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies and was honored by the Association of American Cultures for leadership and commitment to the development of cultural diversity in the arts.

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