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Jennifer Easton Community Spirit Awards

Awards to USA Native Artists for Outstanding
Commitment to Arts and Native Culture

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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First Peoples Fund (FPF)

Deadline Date:

08/13/21 11:59 PM (MT)


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Awards of $25,000 to USA Native artists to recognize outstanding commitment to the arts. The purpose of this program is to honor established artists in a wide range of artistic disciplines that promote understanding of the cultural values and creative practices of their People. Nominations are invited on behalf of established artists that are enrolled members, or are descendants of, a federally recognized tribe, a state-recognized tribe, or are an Alaska Native or Native Hawaiian.

Bringing spirit to community is an important responsibility for artists — it is part of a sacred honor system. Through this award, First Peoples Fund strengthens that honor system by recognizing exceptional artists who have worked selflessly throughout their lives to weave their cultural knowledge and ancestral gifts into their communities. 

Since 2000 First Peoples Fund has recognized over 100 culture bearers across Indian Country through the Jennifer Easton Community Spirit Awards. Honorees are selected for sustaining and growing understanding of the creative practices and cultural values of their People. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 183961

Estimated Size of Grant:

Each honoree will receive a grant of $25,000 to continue carrying on their work. Honorees will also be honored with a celebration in their local community. A story and photo portrait will be commissioned for First Peoples Fund publications.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Nominees must be practicing Native artists who have demonstrated a lifetime of commitment to their art, engaging in their work for at least 10 years.

Nominees must be an enrolled member, or provide proof of lineal descendancy of, a U.S. federally recognized tribe, a state recognized tribe, or be an Alaska Native or Native Hawaiian.

The award is open to artists of any medium, from visual to performing to literary, in both traditional and contemporary forms.

Anyone can nominate a Native artist for the Jennifer Easton Community Spirit Awards. Nominators tend to be students, mentees, colleagues, and tribal elders who have recognized these exceptional artists for knowing themselves, honoring others, and sustaining spirit in their own communities.

Pre-Application Information:

Nomination Deadline: Nominations open on July 19, 2021 & close on August 13, 2021.
Application Deadline: Nominee Applications open on August 20, 2021 & close on September 10, 2021.

Application forms are sent to the artist/nominee and nominator after nominations close. Fully completed applications are due to First Peoples Fund together by September 10, 2021 at 5:00 pm (MT).

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

To Apply:

For more information, please contact Program Manager, Rachael Nez at or call (605) 863-9460.

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

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