The Massachusetts Governor’s Awards in the Humanities recognize individuals for their public actions, grounded in an appreciation of the humanities, to enhance civic life in the Commonwealth. Each year the Mass Humanities Board of Directors selects nominees who are confirmed by the Governor of Massachusetts. Established in 2014, the awards are presented at an annual event.
Thank you to all of our sponsors, donors, and special guests for making the 2020 Awards program such a success!
With your help we created an online awards program that rivaled the dinners of the past in celebrating the recipients and their importance to the cause of the public humanities — while surpassing our fundraising goal! Proceeds will be used in the coming year for programs serving the people of Massachusetts including the Clemente Course, Reading Frederick Douglass Together, and hundreds more through grants.
Watch the full program from October 25, honoring jessie little doe baird, Al Griggs, Lee Pelton, and Fredericka Stevenson, below.
jessie little doe baird is a citizen and vice chairwoman of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe and the Wampanoag Women’s Medicine Society. She is co-founder and director of the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project, for which she garnered a MacArthur Fellowship. She has written an introduction to Wampanoag grammar, is currently working on a dictionary, and has authored many books in the language. She is a former research fellow of the National Science Foundation’s Documenting Endangered Languages program and has served on the Mashpee Housing Authority and the Mashpee Historic District.
Al Griggs graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and then served as a jet pilot in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1963 to 1968. A former Coca-Cola Bottler, Griggs has served on the boards of the Community Foundation and Economic Development Corporation of Western Massachusetts, Cooley Dickinson Hospital, and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health. He recently completed a six-year term on the Mass Humanities board and is currently chair of the board of CISA (Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture) and a member of the board of the John Hay Estate at the Fells in Newbury, New Hampshire.
Lee Pelton is president of Emerson College and an internationally known speaker and writer on the value of liberal education and leadership development, civic engagement, and diversity and inclusion. Pelton served as dean of the college at Colgate University and Dartmouth College, and was president of Willamette University in Salem, Oregon for 13 years. He serves on the board of directors of the Boston Chamber of Commerce, WGBH, MIT Press, Harvard Graduate School Alumni Council, Boston Arts Academy Foundation, the Boston Municipal Research Bureau, Facing History and Ourselves, and the Barr Foundation.
Fredi Stevenson is chair emeritus of Summer Search Boston, which she co-founded in 1993 to support low-income high school students who demonstrate compassion and resilience. She is a member of the Smithsonian National Board and chairman of the Smithsonian Science Education Advisory Board. She served as chair of the board of directors of WBUR, and is currently a member. She is a member of the Women’s Leadership Board at Harvard Kennedy School, and an overseer of the Museum of Science. She served as a member of The NPR Foundation board and as a Boston Fellow of the Harvard Art Museums.
Amy and David Abrams, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
The Barr Foundation, in honor of Lee Pelton
The Beveridge Family Foundation, in honor of Al Griggs
John Burgess and Nancy Adams, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Eastern Bank Charitable Foundation
Patty and Paul Gannon, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
K|B Private Wealth Management
Seth and Beth Klarman, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Mary and Kevin O’Connell, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
William and Lia Poorvu, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Arthur Rock, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
State Street Corporation
Cathy and Jim Stone, in honor of Lee Pelton
Cathy and Jim Stone, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Anonymous, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Community Foundation of Western MA, in honor of Al Griggs
Cooley Dickinson Health Care, in honor of Al Griggs
Dianne Doherty, in honor of Al Griggs
Nancy and Jim Edwards, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Emerson College, in honor of Lee Pelton
Friends of Al and Sally Griggs
Perrin & Bruns Grayson, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Colleen and Ron Hertel, in honor of Al Griggs
Dr. Stephen and Mrs. Darcy Immerman
John McGinn and Cary Davis, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Jack and Beth Meyer, in honor of Fredi Stevenson
The Mohegan Tribe, in honor of jessie little doe baird
Mount Auburn Hospital, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Troy and Pat Murray, in honor of Fredericka Stevnson
Michael Pappone and Diane Savitzky
Raymond James Financial Advisors Michael Serafino, Geoffrey Moore and Mark Teed, in honor of Al Griggs
Bill and Carol Sahlman, in honor of Fredericka Stevenson
Seyfarth Shaw LLP