Rialto Center for the Arts Presents the 2010 Rialto Pioneer Award
4/27/2010The Rialto Pioneer Award is given annually to leaders who have supported the arts, downtown and/or Georgia State University. The 2010 award will honor Ken and Kathy Bernhardt, whose contributions to the arts and marketing in Atlanta have changed the face of the city forever. The award will be presented at the Rialto’s 2009-2010 season closing night featuring Eddie Palmieri, Latin jazz legend on May 1, 2010 at 8 p.m.
Kathy Bernhardt, a community volunteer, resides in Atlanta, Ga. Highly involved in several nonprofits, she serves as the Executive Director for the HAVE Foundation, a 501c3 organization devoted to supporting the education system in the Agalta Valley in northeast Honduras. Kathy has worked in multiple capacities for the Alliance Children’s Theatre and other nonprofits, working on events and fundraisers, doing everything from chairing events to cooking to stuffing envelopes as needed. She has chaired the Alliance Children’s Theatre Guild and the Alliance STARS volunteer group and served on the Alliance Theatre Board of Directors for a number of years. Dr. and Mrs. Bernhardt received the Public Broadcasting Atlanta Lexus Leader of the Arts Award in 2008.
Dr. Ken Bernhardt is the Taylor E. Little Jr. Professor of Marketing and Special Assistant to the Dean for Corporate and Community Relations at the Robinson College of Business at Georgia State University in Atlanta, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1972. He currently serves as chair of the Board of Directors and Executive committee of the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau and on the boards of directors and executive committees for Junior Achievement of Georgia, Leadership Atlanta, Alliance Theatre and the Community Foundation of Greater Atlanta. He also serves on the advisory boards of the Rialto Center for the Arts, Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company and Dad’s Garage Theatre. Dr. Bernhardt is a recipient of the Arts and Business Council's ABBY Award for volunteerism in the arts, the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau President’s Award for outstanding contributions to the marketing of Atlanta, and the American Marketing Association’s Lemburg Award for outstanding contributions to the marketing profession.
Tickets to the performance are $36 to $62 and are available at the Rialto Center’s box office, 404-413-9TIX (9849) or www.rialtocenter.org. Group and Georgia State University student discounts are offered for this show. The Rialto Center for the Arts at Georgia State University is located at 80 Forsyth Street NW, Atlanta, Georgia. Free Parking available for all Rialto Series events.
The award is named the "Pioneer" since the renovation of the derelict Rialto Theater was a pioneering choice for Georgia State. The restoration served as an anchor for the Fairlie-Poplar district, and its renovation turned around the historic area. The Rialto campaign was the first ever for Georgia State and raised $14M. The area now is well-populated both day and night, with the Helen M. Aderhold Learning Center across the street and the addition of the Commons and the Freshman Hall, both Georgia State dormitories.
Previous Rialto Pioneer Award winners have been Joanne McGhee, founder of Dancers Collective and former adjunct professor of dance at Georgia State University, and a pioneer in her own right as a leader in presenting contemporary dance; Peg and Bill Balzer, downtown residents and noted arts supporters whose name is on the Balzer Theater next door, both alumnae of GSU; Carl and Gretchen Patton, past President of Georgia State University and his wife, who have been tireless supporters of the Rialto and without whom the theater would not be here today; and Jo Ann Haden Miller, Director of Cultural and Heritage Tourism, Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, a phenomenal downtown booster and friend of the arts who has been an unsung heroine of arts and cultural programs throughout her career.
Image courtesy of Rialto Center for the Arts