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December 15, 2009

Ella Jenkins was one of seven musicians among 50 artists who received a United States Artists (USA) Fellowship for 2009.

Each year since 2005, USA, a grant-making, artist-advocacy organization dedicated to supporting America’s finest artists, has awarded unrestricted grants to select artists.

Through a rigorous evaluation process, panels of experts in the arts selected the 55 winning artists (including five collaborative pairs) from among 348 nominated applicants from 45 states. USA Fellowships are awarded to artists of all career stages who demonstrate artistic excellence, unique artistic vision, and significant contributions to their fields.

The USA Fellowship winners were announced at a ceremony at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica on December 14, 2009. The event included several live performances, and featured a live stream broadcast on

Ella Jenkins has been called “The First Lady of Children’s Music.” She first began creating songs for children as a volunteer at a recreation center and in subsequent education jobs. For over 50 years Jenkins has been performing international folk songs and original compositions in schools and in television appearances on Mister Roger’s Neighborhood, Sesame Street, and Barney. She was one of the first to record on Moe Asch’s Folkway’s Records, which later became Smithsonian Folkways, and for which she has recorded 29 albums since 1959. She has received numerous awards, including a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2004 Grammy Awards.

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U.S. print media inquiries: Matt Hanks, or Mark Satlof, Shore Fire Media,, or 718.522.7171.

Radio & Promotional inquiries: Mark Gustafson, Shore Fire Media, or 202.275.1156

Sales & Marketing inquiries: John Smith, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, or 206.568.8144