20th Annual County of Ventura Employee, Retiree, and Family Art Show award winners announced


Ventura, Calif. – On Friday, January 13, 2023, the winners of the 20th Annual County of Ventura Employee, Retiree, and Family Art Show were announced by the Ventura County Arts Council and the National Arts Program at a special awards reception. The reception took place on the Main Plaza of the Atrium Gallery, at the County of Ventura Government Center, Hall of Administration, with art entries on display throughout the building.

County Executive Officer Sevet Johnson, PsyD, was in attendance and provided opening remarks, along with Ventura County Arts Council Board Chairperson, Carolyn Mullin. David Yoshitomi, County’s Arts and Culture Manager, announced the winners.

“It was such an honor to announce the winners for this year’s show,” said Mr. Yoshitomi. “The level of talent and creativity connected to the County of Ventura team is so impressive,” he continued, “and it’s wonderful to see it all on display on the walls of the Government Center.”

This show received one of the highest amounts of entries in its history, with over 100 artists submitting 189 unique pieces to exhibit. Almost all mediums are represented, with ceramics, crafts, drawings, fiber works, jewelry, mosaics, paintings, photography, resin pieces, sculpture, and woodwork among the submissions.

Entries were reviewed by panel of three professional artist judges, and selected across the Youth, Teen, and Adult Amateur, Intermediate, and Professional categories. Awards were also given for Best of Show, Arts Education, and Honorable Mention categories.

The exhibit will be on display in the Atrium Gallery of the County of Ventura’s Government Center – Hall of Administration through Friday, February 3, 2023.

Photographs of the winning entries are available on the Ventura County Arts Council’s Newsletter announcement. Here is a list of the winners by category:

Youth (12 Years and Under)

  • First Place – “The Phoenix” by Dahlia Hutchison
  • Second Place – “The Survival Scout” by Emmanuel Balderas Tellez
  • Third Place – “Portrait of Mom” by Violet Coffman
  • Honorable Mention – “Splotch Friends” by Samantha Kien
  • Honorable Mention – “Lost in the Meadow” by Jessica Bleuel

Teen (13 – 18 Years)

  • First Place – “Hazy Reflection” by Shreya Patel
  • Second Place – “Bubba” by Mia Pacheco
  • Third Place – “Milo” by Eliana Amy Garcia
  • Honorable Mention – “Eye to Eye” by Meredith Araujo
  • Honorable Mention – “Melting Away” by Albina Leal

Art Education Award

  • “The Smiler” by Martin Flores, Jr.


  • First Place – “Girl in Doorway-Dalave, Togo Africa” by Douglas Leeper
  • Second Place – “Pink Girl” by Vashti Nahabedian
  • Third Place – “Run Like Hell” by Negar Sabharwal
  • Honorable Mention – “Metro Complex Syndrome” by Thomas Rush
  • Honorable Mention – “November Evening Ventura Avenue” by David Harrison


  • First Place – “Succulent Study #1” by Marilyn Miller
  • Second Place – “Las Manos Que Nos Alimentan” by Guadalupe Cruz
  • Third Place – “The Sandbar” by Maya Porche
  • Honorable Mention – “Blur” by Trini Murillo
  • Honorable Mention – “Moon of Colored Leaves Falling Diptych” by Jay Heninger


  • First Place – “Alone But Undesperate” by Gerardo Segismundo
  • Second Place – “Reflection” by Rachel Fogelfeld
  • Third Place – “Sea Bubbles” by Ozivane Hobbs
  • Honorable Mention – “Frankenstine” by Kenneth Milton
  • Honorable Mention – “Last Minute” by Chris Maclean

Best of Show

  • “Fireworks Lady” by Jofre Daulo

About the National Arts Program

Every year, National Arts Program partners with more than 80+ venues in 37 states to create workplace exhibitions where the artistic expression of employees and their families are recognized. By supporting these venues with an online gallery, funding, guidance, cash prizes, and more, it is the ONLY national nonprofit that is dedicated to transforming people and places by showcasing individual creativity.

About Ventura County Arts Council

Ventura County Arts Council (VCAC) advances the arts in Ventura County by providing arts education and opportunities in schools and other creative settings, by advocating for local artists and arts organizations, and by creating partnerships among artists, arts supporters, businesses, foundations, and county organizations and agencies. It embraces diversity and equity, striving to reach low income, marginalized, and communities of color with programs that offer equal access to the arts. VCAC was formed and incorporated as an independent 501(c)3 non-profit arts organization in 1997. It has been designated by the Ventura County Board of Supervisors as the local partner of the California Arts Council (CAC), with a mandate to serve the county’s citizens in partnership with CAC.