Mary Gillette Announced as 2024 Legacy Award Recipient


The Legacy Award honors those who make a significant, positive impact on Michigan’s arts, history, culture, or environment. The goal for the award is to create a unifying experience for those involved in Michigan arts and culture and demonstrates the Art Park’s values in recognizing the power of collaboration and peer influence. This year, the award honors Mary Gillett for her many contributions to the region. 

Since 2018, Gillett has served as the executive director of the Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Network. Prior to her work with NW MI Arts & Culture Network, Gillett served as executive director for Old Town Playhouse, marketing director for Downtown Traverse City including the State Theatre Project, development for the Grand Traverse Heritage Center, and many grant and writing projects for area nonprofits and media including the Traverse City Business News and Traverse City Record-Eagle. 

An active member of numerous boards and committees, she served on the Impact 100 Traverse City board and chair of the arts and culture committee; as the first chair of the Traverse City Arts Commission, Arts Midwest Creating Connection Michigan Advisory Committee; on the Cultural Advocacy Network of Michigan’s programming committee; as the State president and board member of VSA Michigan; on the Traverse City Film Festival founding committee; Grand Traverse Cultural Coalition; National Overture for Arts & Education Steering Committee; and the early Dennos Museum Center’s Discovery Room committee. As her many accomplishments attest, Gillett is extremely deserving of this award.

The Legacy Gala is an annual fundraising event for the Michigan Legacy Art Park. The event takes place every summer at Crystal Mountain Resort and includes a locally sourced dinner and silent auction with local items from donors and supporters. To attend the event or become a sponsor, please visit the event page: