Michael LaCapa Memorial Scholarship Fund


AAWM Offers Art Scholarship

Once again the Arts Alliance of the White Mountains (AAWM) presents the Michael Lacapa Memorial Scholarship for the Arts. The scholarship, is made available to students of all ages in the greater White Mountains area who are pursuing a higher education in the visual, performing, culinary or literary arts. In 2008, $1,250 in scholarships was presented to seven students.

IMPORTANT! In a revised program starting in 2010 there will be no deadlines for submissions. Instead, applications will be received, reviewed and selected in an ongoing basis as long as funds are available. Full details and applications to download are available here.

Please call, write or e-mail AAWM if more information is needed. Arts Alliance of the White Mountains can be reached at the addresses at the bottom of this page.



Native American Artist and Storyteller

Born in Phoenix, Arizona, Michael and his family moved to Whiteriver, Arizona, on the White Mountain Apache Reservation at the age of one. He is the 2nd of eight children with ethnic roots in the Hopi, Tewa and Apache Tribes. His boyhood love of art matured with a BA in secondary education (Art) from ASU and studies in print making at NAU. He taught art at Phoenix Indian High School and and then at Chaparral High School in Scottsdale. He then returned to the White Mountains to work with the Apache Tribe developing multi-cultural education curricula for native school-age children. Michael's storytelling talents grew from this project as storytelling was used as a teaching tool.

Michael became well known for writing and illustrating many children's books, including: "The Mouse Couple" (1988), the award winning "The Flute Player" (1990) and "Antelope Woman" (1992). He later collaborated with his wife Kathleen in writing and illustrating "Less Than Half, More Than Whole" (1994) for their three children, Rochelle, Anthony and Daniel, and for all children of multicultural backgrounds.

Years ago, Michael was instrumental in organizing the first Native American Arts and Crafts Festival in Pinetop-Lakeside, Arizona, which continues today as an annual tradition. He was sought after nationally and internationally by storyteller's conventions to tell his wonderful native stories, many of which were based on his own experiences. In the fall of 2004, while returning from a speaking engagement, Michael was critically injured in an auto accident near Socorro, New Mexico. Paralized from the neck down, Michael's good spirit and wit continued to amaze all who knew him. Then, in March 2005, Michael succumbed to pneumonia. While he has gone on to his reward, his spirit remains with all who knew him in this life.

Of her late husband's artistic vision, Kathy Lacapa says..."His philosophy was...'Always write about what you know, be true to your culture or region and never let go of your imagination'. "

In an effort to keep Michael's legacy alive, AAWM has established a scholarship fund in his name to benefit any resident within the greater White Mountains area wishing to pursue a higher education in the arts.

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