Renee Balter, Dorothy Bangs and Richard Paradise will be honored next week with the Martha’s Vineyard Museum’s annual Martha’s Vineyard Medal.
The museum awards the medals annually to community leaders in honor of their commitment to preserving the Island’s history, arts and culture.
Mrs. Balter helped start the Oak Bluffs Association in 1990 and later helped reinstate the Oak Bluffs Historical Commission and create the Cottage City Historical District. Mrs. Balter, an artist, is also a founding member of the Martha’s Vineyard Center for the Visual Arts. Her friend and fellow Oak Bluffs resident Skip Finley will present Mrs. Balter’s award.
Mr. Paradise is the founding executive director of the Martha’s Vineyard Film Society, a non-profit organization which now has 1,900 members and an annual audience of 30,000. In 2012, the society opened the Martha’s Vineyard Film Center, which shows a variety of films year-round. Mr. Paradise’s award will be presented by Oak Bluffs poet and film enthusiast Jennifer Smith Turner.
The medal will be presented posthumously to Mrs. Bangs, who was a Vineyard resident for 67 years. She was a long time volunteer at Windemere, the Tisbury Senior Center and the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, and she was a leader in the annual Daffodil Days fundraiser that supported the American Cancer Society. Mrs. Bangs died in April 2013 at age 88. The award will be presented to her children by family friend and Mrs. Bangs’ former music student Denys Wortman.
The medal ceremony will take place Monday, August 11, at 5 p.m. at the Federated Church in Edgartown; the event is free and open to all. The Martha’s Vineyard Museum’s annual meeting will precede the medal ceremony, and there will be a reception on the museum lawn, around the corner from the church, after the ceremony.