Nancy Roucher of Sarasota has received the prestigious Dr. Mary Palmer Trail Blazer Award from the Florida Alliance for Arts Education. This accolade is presented to Roucher for her contributions to the elevation of arts education in both Sarasota and the state of Florida.
Roucher’s passion for arts education has been evident throughout her career. In the early 1980s, she worked as the director of Project HEART (Helping Education Through Arts Resources for Teachers), which served 75 school districts in the Midwest. She then became co-director for the Florida Institute for Arts Education which was one of only six national arts education institutes sponsored by the J. Paul Getty Trust.
When Roucher moved to Sarasota in 1986, she immediately began contributing to the arts community. In response to the cuts to arts education in Sarasota County in 1988, Nancy founded the Arts Education Task Force through the Sarasota Arts Council (now the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County). This group of dedicated citizens came together to restore arts in the Sarasota County schools, and has remained active to this day. In addition to this work, Roucher is also an active member of the Arts and Cultural Alliance Board and serves on the Community/Schools Partnership for the Arts. She will be presented with her award at the Florida Alliance for Arts Education’s Annual Summit in Fort Lauderdale on June 21, 2019.