The Kennedy Center

Nomination Process

Do you know a Citizen Artist?

The Kennedy Center, a living memorial to President John F. Kennedy, honors our 35th President everyday by uplifting ideals from his legacy (service, justice, freedom, courage, and gratitude) that live through the arts. As part of this celebration of legacy, the Kennedy Center launched the “Citizen Artist Fellow Recognition” in 2016, which recognizes emerging artists across the country who utilize their art form for positive impact on communities.

The recognized Citizen Artists Fellows will be mentored by Kennedy Center artistic partners. Additionally, they will receive national attention for their impact in their local communities and opportunities to showcase their voice and work on stage, through exhibition, and at national convenings.

The recognized Citizen Artist Fellows are a signature component of our annual spring Arts Summit, a national platform for shining a spotlight on stories of Citizen Artists who live up to President Kennedy's ideals. The recognized Citizen Artist Fellows represent the overall diversity of the national audience the Kennedy Center strives to reflect and serve.

Nominating a Citizen Artist Fellow

Please complete this nomination by December 22, 2017, for an artist, teaching artist, social entrepreneur, or other individual who embodies community connection, impact and at least one of the ideals attributed to the work and life of John F. Kennedy (service, justice, freedom, courage, and gratitude).

Nominees must be available to attend both Arts Summits and the Summer Retreat in order to receive the recognition.


Citizen Artist Fellows must be 21 years of age and older. The Kennedy Center will recognize one Citizen Artist Fellow from each of five US regions (West Coast/Hawaii/Alaska; Southwest; Midwest; Southeast/Virgin Islands; Northeast). Nominators should select the region in which the nominee primarily works and lives. If the nominee works and lives in different regions, please select the region in which the nominee primarily works.

  • Northeast

    Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia

  • Southeast

    Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, US Virgin Islands

  • Midwest

    Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, Wisconsin

  • Southwest

    Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas

  • West Coast

    Alaska, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming


The nomination period for the 2018/2019 Citizen Artist Fellow Recognition is now closed.

The nomination period for the 2019/2020 Citizen Artist Fellow Recognition will open in October 2018.