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Window in the World

Awards

Hector Black Award

Each year the festival is dedicated to someone whose recognition of the world as one – a circle of humanity – has led to international activism and friendship in the Upper Cumberland. The nominee should have demonstrated exceptional commitment to befriending people from around the world. The ideal nominee has learned much of other cultures, cares for humanity everywhere, and actively pursues this international interest right here, benefiting our whole community.

Katie Kumar

Katharine Kumar is the 2019 recipient of the Hector Black Award. For many years, she has been actively engaged in an effort to make Cookeville and the Upper Cumberland area an inclusive place for people from all races and cultures. She is well known for helping to make international students at TTU feel at home in Cookeville. She served on the board of International Friends 
for 27 years and continues to host international students as part of her family. She coordinated the “Window on the World” festival for 11 years.

In addition, she played an active part in helping to bring two Iraqi refugees and many Muslim Bosnian refugees to this country during the Yugoslavian war. She has also promoted Unicef by sharing an instrument collection and a Gandhi peace program with school children.

Through these and numerous other activities over the years, she has helped to create an atmosphere of social and cultural inclusion in this city. She truly embodies the qualities that the Hector Black award seeks to recognize in Cookeville citizens.

Mandala Award

mandala award Each year the festival is dedicated to someone whose recognition of the world as one – a circle of humanity – has led to international activism and friendship in the Upper Cumberland. The nominee should have demonstrated exceptional commitment to befriending people from around the world. The ideal nominee has learned much of other cultures, cares for humanity everywhere, and actively pursues this international interest right here, benefiting our whole community.

Travis Jarrell

From the very beginning of Window on the World, Travis Jarrell has been a key part of the festival. Her performances of Middle Eastern and Central Asian dances have entranced all ages as well as audience levels. The experience is as moving as it is beautiful.

This artistry comes from depth. Travis has studied dance since childhood--including classical, modern, and folkloric--all informing a unique professional life. Her specialties naturally led to travels, further enriching her art. In her WOW Symposium presentation one year, “The Universal Language of Dance,” Travis demonstrated, through dance, how cultural similarities overcome national borders. In this way, she noted, the world’s peoples could be seen as the colors in a rainbow, with more blending, in-between hues ... if we look closely.

Travis’s perfection in art comes also from breadth. First is the travel mentioned above, most notably living in Uzbekistan to study and perform as well as performing in Washington D.C. at the Smithsonian, New York City, Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and two short solo concert tours in the UK and France.. She has further graced Cookeville stages other than WOW’s in two concerts at CPAC and one at Art a la Carte gallery.

Teaching has also added breadth to Travis’s dance life; for when you love something, outreach comes naturally. She has taught Middle Eastern Dance classes for many years with City of Cookeville’s Leisure Services. This class performs with Travis at Window on the World each year. She has assisted with dance scenes for CPAC. She also works with International Friends at TTU, helping to produce events. And she occasionally performs and teaches at the Global Education Center in Nashville, a long-time WOW partner.

Travis Jarrell’s depth and breadth of experience in dance have made her a cultural treasure in our community.

Previous Recipients

Year

Mandala Award

Hector Black Award

2018 Linda Ragsdale Hector Black
2017 Dr. Heidermarie Weidner  
2016 Peggy Semmes  
2015 Dr. Melissa Geist  
2014 Dr. Pete Helton  
2013 Amy Miller  
2012 Cella Neapolitan  
2011 Katie Kumar  
2010 Peggy Fragopoulos  
2009 Patrick Ryan  
2008 Dr. Sam & Diane Glasgow  
2007 Dr. JoAnne Clark & Dr. Chuck Womack  
2006 Marge Rios  
2005 Diane Paul  
2004 Hector Black  
2003 Robert & Julia Smoak  
2002 Don Estes  

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