FRANKFORT, Ky. — Four Magoffin County residents and one Powell County resident join the ranks of more than 200 people statewide who are certified Kentucky Community Scholars after completing a training course in June offered by the Kentucky Arts Council in Salyersville.

The arts council's Community Scholars Program trains members of a community in documentation, interpretation and dissemination of their unique local cultural resources and traditional art forms.

The four new Magoffin County Community Scholars are:

  • Jincy Bailey
  • Brenda K. Howard
  • Randall Risner
  • Betty J. Williams

Powell County resident Jeramy Bailey also completed the course.

Mark Brown, folk and traditional arts program director for the arts council, said the Magoffin County class was enthusiastic about documenting local culture and traditions.

"They really demonstrated their sense of pride in being from Magoffin County," Brown said. "Magoffin Countians have a strong value of the arts and they are proud of that. They have a deep appreciation for the arts and a willingness to participate in different art forms and celebrate them."

Community Scholars participants gain skills to identify, document and present artistic traditions and cultural heritage. Projects that began in the class included documenting Magoffin County artist Tom Whitaker, genealogical projects, and documenting local recreational and occupational traditions.

Certification as a Community Scholar opens up many opportunities for future research projects.

"Various agencies that offer funding opportunities for cultural projects recognize the Kentucky Community Scholar certification as an asset on grant applications," said Lori Meadows, arts council executive director. "This certification can help leverage financial support for future projects."

In addition to the arts council, entities that recognize the title include the Kentucky Heritage Council, Kentucky Foundation for Women, Kentucky Oral History Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information about the Kentucky Community Scholars Program, visit http://artscouncil.ky.gov/Opportunities/CommScholars.htm.

The Kentucky Arts Council, the state arts agency, creates opportunities for Kentuckians to value, participate in and benefit from the arts. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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