North Coast Repertory Theatre will present the third annual San Diego’s Champion for the Arts Award to Jeffrey and Sheila Lipinsky, as part of a community-wide effort to honor individuals who make a difference in the arts. The award will be presented at North Coast Repertory Theatre’s Spotlight Gala on April 22.
The name “Lipinsky” is synonymous with giving in San Diego. Jeffrey and Sheila carry on the tradition of philanthropy established by Jeffrey’s father Bernard and his wife, Dorris.
“Philanthropy has always been important to both of us,” Jeffrey said of the tradition he and his wife, Sheila have preserved and nurtured. “That’s the way we were raised.”
The San Diego’s Champion for the Arts Award recognizes those who have given an extraordinary measure of their time, talents and treasure to benefit the visual and performance arts in the greater San Diego region. This year The Lipinsky Family San Diego Jewish Arts Festival celebrates its 25th anniversary. Established by a generous gift from the late Bernard and Dorris Lipinsky, the festival has been funded ever since by the Lipinsky family.
Jeffrey and Sheila value the arts and arts education. They are longtime major sponsors of The Playwrights Project that teaches literacy and storytelling through playwriting. They generously support local theatre, and Sheila serves on the board of directors of The Old Globe.
Jeff and Sheila were both born and raised in San Diego, and both are graduates of San Diego State University. They have given generously to their alma mater. Their support to San Diego State includes apprenticeships for SDSU students in scenic design, costuming and lighting, musical theatre and scholarship programs, as well as Jewish studies and gifts to the School of Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences for research and graduate studies. Their biggest joy is their children and grandchildren.
Longtime North Coast Rep patron Richard Rovsek, whose wife Jeri chaired the Spotlight Gala in 2015 and 2016, came up with the award concept. Together with the theatre’s artistic director David Ellenstein, they developed the criteria and worked with a committee to develop a list of candidates for the award.