Fine Arts Commission


  • Second Wednesday of every month
  • 7:30 p.m.


  • Pamela Garbarini, Chairman
  • Jeff Rhodes, Vice Chairman
  • Mira Chander
  • Debra Hatchett
  • Jacqueline Moses
  • Sonya Osseny

  • Hope Salmanoff
  • Judy Schutz
  • Vassilen Vasevski
  • Sharon Vicker
  • Ellen A. Waxberg
  • Pamela Williams


  • Ralph Klein, Trustee Liaison
  • Ann Tennes, Liaison


The Fine Arts Commission promotes interest in cultural and arts activities in the Village. Some of the responsibilities of the Commission include promoting the work of private organizations and individual volunteers within the Village who are active in the fine arts, and encouraging the cooperation of public and private agencies, as well as the general public, in supporting cultural enrichment within the Village.

Awards for Artistic Excellence

Each year, the Fine Arts Commission awards the Award for Artistic Excellence to a Skokie resident and to one Skokie group that has made significant contributions to the visual, performing, musical or literary arts in the community. View past recipients of this prestigious award. Nominations for the 2020 Skokie Award for Artistic Excellence are currently being accepted. The deadline to submit an award nomination is April 1, 2020. 

Grants for Skokie Schools and Arts Organizations

The Skokie Fine Arts Commission offers two granting programs, one for Skokie schools and the other for Skokie Arts Organizations. If there are any questions about the guidelines or required information during the application process, please contact Fine Arts Commission staff liaison Ann Tennes, Director of Marketing and Communications.

Grant Applications

Applications for 2019 - 2020 grants are due by September 27, 2019. A workshop for interested grant applicants will be held on Wednesday, September 11, 2019, 7:30 p.m. at Skokie Village Hall, 5127 Oakton Street, Skokie, Illinois, Conference Room A. During the workshop, the grant applications will be reviewed and Fine Arts Commission members will answer questions from those in attendance.

Cultural Arts Grant Application for Skokie Schools

The Cultural Arts Grant for Skokie Schools (maximum of $500 per grant) requires the submission of a basic application and completion of program evaluation. Skokie public and private schools who host professional visiting artists are eligible to apply for this grant.  Programs should have an emphasis on fine arts, music and dance while promoting cultural diversity. View the Grant Application (PDF).

Project Grant Application or Skokie Arts Organizations (PDF)

Skokie not-for-profit arts organizations are eligible to apply for the Project Grant for Skokie Arts Organizations. This grant is available in varying amounts, however, the organization submitting the application must make a matching financial contribution of at least 25% of the cost of the project. Organizations that receive funding through the Village's Grant Programming Budget, schools and governing bodies with taxing powers are not eligible to apply. View the Grant Application (PDF).

Students' Outstanding Artist Recognition (SOAR)

The Skokie Fine Arts Commission also sponsors the Students' Outstanding Artist Recognition (SOAR) annual student art show at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie. Artwork is selected by the students' teachers and is on display during the month of March, in honor of Youth Arts Month.

The SOAR program features select Skokie student artwork at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie, 9501 Skokie Boulevard. For photos from the 2019 SOAR reception at the North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie please email your request.
Image from above of a crowd at the gallery, with a small orchestra

Skokie Through the Lens 2019/2020 - Faces of Skokie

The Skokie Fine Arts Commission initiated the Skokie Through the Lens (STL) community photography exhibit in 2014, with enthusiastic response from Skokie residents each year since. The Skokie Through the Lens exhibition is for anyone who lives, works or plays in Skokie and must depict life in Skokie during the past year and be consistent with the Fine Arts Commission's chosen theme. Phoneography/Instagram images are welcome. Each individual may submit up to three images, with a total of approximately 30 images selected from all qualified submission. 

The 2019/2020 STL theme is Faces of Skokie, and dozens of talented photographers submitted photos by January 1, 2020 deadline. In coming weeks, members of the Fine Arts Commission will select the images that will be featured in the exhibition. Photographers of the selected works will be honored at the April 20, 2020 Village Board meeting and the exhibit will open that evening at Skokie Village Hall, 5127 Oakton Street. 

The 2018 STL selected photographs are on display at Skokie Village Hall, 5127 Oakton Street, and can be viewed Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

View a video of all photos selected for the Skokie Through the Lens 2018 exhibit.

View a video of all photos selected for the Skokie Through the Lens 2017 exhibit.

View a video of all photos selected for the Skokie Through the Lens 2016 exhibit.

View a video of all photos selected for the Skokie Through the Lens 2015 exhibit.

Resources for Schools and Arts Organizations

The goals of the Fine Arts Commission include informing the community about the activities of organizations whose efforts advance arts and culture in Skokie.
  • Illinois Arts Alliance
    Arts Alliance Illinois is a voice for the arts and arts education in Illinois. Through advocacy, research and collaboration, the Illinois Arts Alliance helps give voice to a creative state.
  • Illinois Arts Council
    The Illinois Arts Council provides links to pages with information on grants, program deadlines, meetings, an art fair directory and arts council publications throughout Illinois.