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Cindy Petersen (left). submitted photo.

ROANOKE, Va. (March 11, Taubman release) – The Taubman Museum of Art was honored with the Virginia Association of Museums’ Innovation Award during VAM’s annual conference in Richmond Tuesday, March 8. The Innovation Award was created to recognize museums that demonstrate a commitment to use their platform as a trusted source of information to build relationships with and create meaningful impact within their community, and begin conversations around important topics affecting the museum field and the world at large.

The award can be given in one of three categories: Diversity and Inclusion, Expanding Audience, and Community Engagement. The Taubman Museum of Art won for Community Engagement. In this category, a museum must show that they are using their position of trust and knowledge within their community to engage with community groups and organizations on current issues and that the community has responded with that engagement in a substantive manner.

“We’re honored to receive this recognition from our statewide museum peers,” said Cindy Petersen, executive director of the Taubman Museum of Art. “Our focus is always on meeting the community where they are with our outreach programming, gauging and addressing issues that are important to those living in southwest Virginia, and providing art as a means for people to discover, learn and grow. We have worked to reinvent community engagement through several key projects that were noted in the nomination: Healing Ceilings; Brush Pals; Learning Lab for Leaders; ARtreach; Happy HeARTs; and new virtual programming with the nation’s Historic Black Colleges and Universities.”