2021 Prescott Area ATHENA Award goes to Robyn Allen, Executive Director of Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts

By Breeanya Hinkel • Photo by Bo Allen

Robyn Allen, Executive Director of Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts, is the recipient of the 2021 Prescott ATHENA Award. The award actively supports and celebrates the ATHENA mission to support, develop, and honor women leaders, to inspire women to achieve their full potential and create balance in leadership worldwide.

Robyn embodies the spirit of the award which honors individuals who strive toward the highest levels of personal and professional accomplishment, excel in their chosen field, devote time and energy to their community in a meaningful way, and forge paths of leadership for other women to follow.

“It was quite a surprise, and I was deeply honored to be the recipient of this year’s ATHENA Award. I was proud to stand alongside the other finalists at this beautiful event.  It’s nice to take a moment and soak it all in and to recognize the accomplishments we have all been a part of this past year and throughout our careers. It made me feel lucky to be a woman working alongside these inspirational leaders in our community that I love so much!” Robyn said of receiving the award.

This year’s award ceremony took place on the patio at Goods from the Garden at the Prescott Gateway Mall. With 100 people in attendance, it was a beautiful event full of socializing, guest speakers including Bonnie Stevens (Quad Cities Business News) and Marnie Uhl (Prescott Valley Chamber of Commerce), and the awards presentation. This year’s 10 finalists were in attendance.

Robyn has served as Executive Director of Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts since 2016. She has worked as a professional in the arts for 30 years. Her career has encompassed all areas including producing, acting, directing, and arts leadership. She received her education at ASU under the direction of Marshall W. Mason and at the New Actors Workshop in New York. Robyn served as Artistic Director of Theater Works and was a founding member of the acclaimed Algonquin Theater Co. She has received 38 Arizoni Nominations and 14 awards for her work in theater including Best Director, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Best Guest Artist.

Robyn has been featured in the Arizona Republic’s “Who’s Who of Women in Theater.” Most recently, Suze’s Prescott Center for the Arts received a nomination for the 2020 Governor’s Arts Awards, the 2020 Prescott Chamber Business Excellence in Arts & Culture Award, and on a national level, the 2020 Twink Lynch Organizational Achievement Award. Noted with this national acknowledgment were Robyn’s ability to pivot SPCA staff and resources to create PCA Serves to address the needs of its mostly elderly patron population, as well as services to the broad community during the pandemic. Additionally, under Robyn’s leadership, and with board support and approval, PCA undertook a capital campaign for the existing campus and add new spaces to better serve our communities, especially our youth. The “Setting the Stage” Capital Campaign was launched in 2018 to fully realize PCA’s vision and mission, preserve and remodel its Main Stage, and build a Studio Theater to expand rehearsal and classroom space, youth programs, and an additional art gallery for visual arts programming. While PCA shelved the campaign and served the community they received an anonymous cornerstone gift re-launching the campaign which recently broke ground in July 2021.

“As surprised as I was [to receive the ATHENA Award],” Robyn said, “one thing that is very clear to me is that I certainly didn’t receive this award on my own.  Every step of the way I have always had great people working alongside me; teaching me, providing guidance and when times required it—a shoulder to lean on. I am truly blessed.”

Prescott Woman Magazine and Quad Cities Business News host the ATHENA Awards. The event this year was sponsored by Northland Cares, SCORE, Prescott Valley Chamber, Findlay Prescott, Pinnacle Bank, Allan’s Flowers, Back Alley Wine Bar, Dignity Health/YRMC, Little Dealer Little Prices, Northern AZ Social, and Goods from the Garden.

For more information visit www.prescottathena.com.