By Kim Meyer-Webb | Photography by Lori Sparkman Photography
Five years ago, Thea Foundation hosted an intimate dinner with friends and families celebrating the success of its scholarship recipients. The evening featured performances and testimonials as a tribute to the organization’s continued mission fulfillment work: providing students and teachers across Arkansas more accessibility to art education. Into the Blue returns with two evenings filled with art appreciation and its transformative power when integrated into education – Into the Blue: Resonate and Into the Blue: An Evening of Entertainment.
A highlight of Into the Blue: Resonate will be a formal announcement of the Pillar of the Arts Award recipient. The Charles A. Frueauff Foundation will be recognized with the Pillars of the Arts Award for its unwavering commitment to improving the welfare of students and our next generation of leaders. The evening will also showcase the North Little Rock High School string quartet, a result of the Thea Foundation Arts Reconstruction project that brings string music programs into Central Arkansas schools.
Thea Foundation makes higher education more accessible to students through its scholarship program. From visual and performing arts to fashion design, creative writing and film – recipients represent a spectrum of talent. Nearly 30 colleges partner with Thea Foundation, generously matching or exceeding the foundation’s scholarships. Since its inception in 2002, the Thea Scholarship Program has awarded more than $2.5 million to 300+ Arkansas students.
The Frueauff family is equally committed to higher education and the pursuit of excellence for all Arkansans. Established in 1950 with the vision of supporting education, social services and healthcare, the Charles A. Frueauff Foundation has awarded more than $165 million throughout the country. Thea Foundation reflects the foundation’s finite focus on nurturing students to become effective visionaries. Charles A. Frueauff Foundation Vice President of Communications & Programs Anna Kay Frueauff adds, “Through Thea Foundation’s many programs and advocacy work, Arkansas’ young people are encouraged to think outside the box and find their passion. This happens because of an art class, a drama class, playing an instrument, singing a song, taking a picture, creating a film, designing a dress or writing a poem. Passions are ignited and leaders are born.”
For nearly two decades, Thea Foundation has cultivated the arts in education through strategic partnerships and true tenacity. Linda and Paul Leopoulos established Thea Foundation following the death of their daughter Thea Kay. The family realized that her academic performance improved as a result of her interest and pursuit of the arts. This revelation is the heart of Thea Foundation’s vision and what Paul refers to as the life-changing “Thea Experience.” Paul adds, “We want every kid in Arkansas to be able to experience the arts, and gain confidence for the things they want to be in life.”
Anna Kay, Sue & David Frueauff