Eyes on the prize: Michelle Obama honors PlatteForum

Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

Ain't it beautiful? That's Judy Anderson and Salvador Flores-Martinez of Denver's PlatteForum accepting the 2011 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award from Michelle Obama yesterday at the White House. Their voyage to Washington also marked Sal's first-ever jet flight and an ensuing sense of utter awe at being in the nation's capital. That's what spilled over the phone line when we talked to him a couple of days ago, plus a real appreciation for being part of something so big. "I never thought I was creative," he says of his pre-ArtLab days. "I always saw the world as gray, until PlatteForum opened up my vision to the world." At 19, Sal is a veteran of PlatteForum's ArtLab youth program, which was specially earmarked for the $10,000 award. Video from the ceremony follows.

"Sal is one of a kind," notes PlatteForum's education director Meagan Terry. "He is one of those students who burn a light in the room. He's the perfect fit for ArtLab: He's never been afraid to try anything. He'll just dive in and go for it. He's not afraid to challenge himself to do better, yet he's also very honest about his struggles in life." And she adds, high on the moment, "Here we are in D.C. There are only three of us on staff at PlatteForum. But we work with a million artists who are able to reach the kids right where they're at." Amen.

To keep up with the Froyd's-eye-view of arts and culture in Denver, "like" my fan page on Facebook.

Follow us on Twitter!

Like us on Facebook!

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.