- Recipient must be a full-time undergraduate in College of Liberal Arts majoring in English, dance or art
- Sophomore, junior or senior class level
- Minimum overall 3.0 GPA
- Demonstrates financial need
Gary and Carol Ann Hixon devote their volunteer time to the arts and education. An interior designer in Fort Collins for many years, Gary is an emeritus board member for the Museum of Contemporary Art and the producer of ArtWear, a juried, one-of-a-kind wearable art fashion show and sale that benefits the Lincoln Center's visual arts program. Currently, Gary designs unique jewelry and coordinates art showings. Carol Ann is a retired humanities educator, emeritus board member for the Fort Collins Symphony and member of the Cultural Resources Board. Together, they support artists and educators with time and resources. They've lived in Fort Collins since 1966, raising their two daughters to carry on the family traditions.
Gary grew up on a wheat farm in western Nebraska and Colorado native Carol Ann lived next door to the steel mill in Pueblo. Both they and their daughters and sons-in-law earned degrees from Colorado State University with strong connections to the College of Liberal Arts. Among the founders of the Great Conversations, they continue to support liberal arts initiatives in the academic community. Their two granddaughters, both very young, are surrounded with love and liberal amounts of the arts and humanities.
Gary and Carol Ann encourage all learners to consider this advice from author Louis L'Amore. He was more than the writer of western novels. In his autobiography, Education of a Wandering Man, he says, "education should provide the tools for a widening and deepening of life, for increased appreciation of all one sees or experiences. It should equip a person to live life well, to understand what is happening about him, for to live life well, one must live with awareness."