Recognized for her belief in the importance of arts education and her dedication to young people, Mary Folberg is the recipient of the Kennedy Center Award for Excellence in Arts Education 1981, and the Metropolitan Arts Commission Award in 1982, 1988, and 1989. She has been featured in several publications including Images of Oregon Women and Lears magazines. She holds degrees in Literature and Dance and has taught in California public schools and Portland public schools. Founder and long time director of the Jefferson High School Dance Department, she also created the school’s company of dancers, The Jefferson Dancers, and was its director for 17 years. In 1993 she created The Northwest Academy, designed to educate the area’s most creative and intellectual young people.