Washington, D.C. November 17th, 2015. Caldera student representative Alena Nore and Caldera Executive Director Tricia Snell accepted the National Arts & Humanities Youth Program Award at the White House.

Caldera, the Oregon-based youth arts organization founded by Wieden+Kennedy co-founder Dan Wieden, was one of 12 honorees of the 2015 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program (NAHYP) Award, presented at The White House in Washington DC by First Lady Michelle Obama.

Caldera is an  is the first organization in Oregon to ever receive this award. The 2015 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award is the nation’s highest honor for creative youth programs, recognizing the country’s best programs as well as highlighting the positive role that arts and humanities play in youth academic achievement, graduation rates and college enrollment. The awardees—chosen from a pool of more than 285 nominations and 50 finalists from 50 states—were also recognized for improving literacy, language abilities, communication, performance skills, and cultural awareness.

In Portland the day after the White House event, Caldera had a fundraising event called “Stories of Change” which raised over $400,000. Over 350 guests attended the event. Stories of Change is an annual fundraiser to support Caldera’s innovative work with underserved youth in Portland and Central Oregon. Event chair Priscilla Bernard Wieden and founder and board co-chair Dan Wieden kicked off the evening with a warm welcome and words about the legacy of the program, which is approaching it’s 20th year.

The purpose of Stories of Change is to celebrate Caldera and to raise funds for our Youth Program, which provides long-term, year-round mentoring and arts and environmental education to underserved youth in both Portland and Central Oregon. This year our event raised over $400,000!

First Lady Michelle Obama, Caldera student representative Alena Nore, Caldera Executive Director Tricia Snell. Alena and Tricia accept the National Arts & Humanities Youth Program Award from at the White House.

Caldera founder and board co-chair Dan Wieden and event chair Priscilla Bernard Wieden welcome guests.

MOsley WOtta, spoken word and hip-hop artist and Caldera teaching artist, performs a special piece about Caldera.

MOsley WOtta, spoken word and hip-hop artist and Caldera teaching artist, performs a special piece about Caldera.

Caldera alumni with teaching artist Catón Lyles performing during the cocktail hour.

Caldera alumni with teaching artist Catón Lyles performing during the cocktail hour.

Caldera student artwork was featured as part of the centerpiece on each table at the event.

Caldera student artwork was featured as part of the centerpiece on each table at the event.

Leading into the live auction, MOsley WOtta, spoken word and hip-hop artist and Caldera teaching artist, gave a special performance highlighting the importance of Caldera and it’s supporters.

The auction peaked when Pink Martini’s Thomas Lauderdale spontaneously informed auctioneer Johnna Wells that he would offer the dinner package at his loft on three separate evenings. The package sold three times raising a total of $36,000!

After the live auction, the program featured a short film about Caldera’s mentors and Youth Program. The film was created in part by Caldera alum Eloe Gill-Williams, who spoke following the film.

To close the evening, guests demonstrated their support for Caldera in a paddle raise and generosity sweep. In total, the event raised over $400,000 which will directly support Caldera’s work with youth.

 

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