Stella Harvey, founder and organizer of the Whistler Writers Festival, has been named the 2015 Whistler Champion of Arts & Culture.
The Whistler Arts Council created the Champion of Arts & Culture award in 2003 to recognize local businesses for their contributions to arts, culture and heritage. In 2014, the award was expanded to include volunteers, cultural workers and artists. Harvey was one of three finalists this year, alongside Sue Eckersley of Watermark Communications (for her work with Cornucopia, the World Ski and Snowboard Festival and the Whistler Holiday Experience) and Stephen Vogler (for his work with The Point Artists-Run Centre).
Harvey, who is working on her second novel in Athens, Greece, thanked the sponsors of the award, the Whistler Arts Council and the Whistler Chamber of Commerce, which hosted the annual Whistler Excellence Awards. The awards ceremony took place at the Westin Resort on Thursday, June 18.
She also thanked the people "who put up with me day in and day out, and allow me to dream the dreams I have for this writing community."
The Whistler Champion of Arts & Culture Award praised the profile of the festival, which takes place each fall, along with its related author-in-school program and writer-in-residence program.
Harvey's next book, The Brink of Freedom, comes out in the fall.