Iona Blake Dobbins Scholarship Fund for the Visual Arts

The “Iona Blake Dobbins Scholarship Fund for the Visual Arts” is awarded annually to students 15 years or age or older. The scholarship can be used to support education in the field of visual arts, either through in person or online learning.

Who was Iona Dobbins?
“First lady of the arts in Rhode Island.”
“A champion for artists and the arts.”
“Our artist in chief.”

These are just a few of the tributes Iona Dobbins earned during her more than 40 years of dedicated service to the arts in Rhode Island. Born in Boston and raised in Franklin, MA, Iona was a graduate of Fisher College in Boston. She came to Rhode Island in 1960 when her husband, Dick, joined the faculty at Brown University.

Iona volunteered extensively, promoted arts in education, and served on nonprofit boards. She was the state coordinator for the New England Foundation for the Arts, founded Business Volunteers for the Arts in Rhode Island and First Night Providence, and helped establish VSA Arts of Rhode Island. She was executive director of the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and was active with the Providence Art Club and the Art League of Rhode Island, serving as the latter organization’s president from 2008 to 2010. Iona died in July, 2012 at age 82.

For information on our 2020 recipients, Medeski Dow and Isabel Mayers, click HERE and HERE

The application process for the 2021 scholarship will be announced early in 2021.

The scholarship fund is held by Rhode Island Foundation. If you wish to make a donation to the scholarship fund, please use this link HERE