TACA Announces Stalwart Arts Supporters Donna Wilhelm and Sam Self to be Honored as 2021 Silver Cup Recipients November 16, 2020

Philanthropists Donna Wilhelm and Sam Self at the Nasher Sculpture Center


DALLAS – TACA (The Arts Community Alliance) has announced that Donna Wilhelm and Sam Self will be honored as the 43rd TACA Silver Cup Award recipients, presented by J.P. Morgan. Celebrated each year, TACA Silver Cup spotlights two individuals who have made lasting contributions to arts and culture in our community.

TACA announced the selection of honorees at a reception last Thursday at the Nasher Sculpture Center attended by special guests, including past TACA Silver Cup recipients. At the gathering, TACA President and Executive Director Terry D. Loftis thanked TACA’s past and present Silver Cup Honorees and other generous donors.

TACA Board Chair Tara Lewis said, “I’m proud of TACA’s longstanding tradition of recognizing individuals who’ve contributed to the rich fabric of Dallas’s arts and cultural landscape. This year we’re thrilled to honor Donna Wilhelm and Sam Self, two philanthropists who’ve been faithful arts supporters and who are an inspiration to me personally. They’ve made a notable difference in the vibrancy of our city through their gifts of time, talent, and treasure.”

About the 2021 Silver Cup Honorees

Donna Wilhelm

Author of A Life of My Own, A Memoir, Donna dedicates her book sale profits to build capacity of underserved women, girls and youth education. Her broad philanthropic mission empowers the arts and cultural connection, mental health and environmental conservation.

In her home community of Dallas, she is Life Trustee of KERA, North Texas Public Broadcasting and regional Dallas Theater Center; board member of The Arts Community Alliance (TACA), SMU Data Arts, The Nasher Sculpture Center and past trustee of DFW World Affairs Council. Nationally, she serves as Trustee of National Public Radio, and globally, she supports education-based initiatives in developing world countries.

Donna’s undergraduate education was at CUNY, Hunter College, and her postgrad work in jewelry design was at NY Parsons School of Design. She completed The Philanthropy Workshop (TPW) training, established by The Rockefeller Foundation and continuing alumni global workshops.

During the COVID pandemic, Donna finds solace through her arts training. Using photographs, she creates ink sketches and watercolor portraits to sustain her connection with friends and family members.

Her community awards include AFP2019 Outstanding Philanthropist, Meadows at the Winspear Honoree, TITAS Tom Adams Award, and Bruce Wood Dance Company’s The Bruce Award.

Sam Self

Sam is a stalwart supporter of the arts in Dallas and has been a key link between the business community and the arts. After a 34-year career at Texas Instruments, he retired in 2002 as Senior Vice President, corporate controller and chief accounting officer. Since, he has served in many capacities with Dallas arts organizations, including his role as President and Executive Director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra during a transition period for the organization, in addition to previously serving as Chair of the DSO Foundation and DSO building committee member.

As Don Glendenning, who nominated Sam for the honor puts it, “It is difficult to imagine more impactful volunteer service to the Dallas arts. Sam has been a quiet but key figure in fostering corporate philanthropy for the arts through his tenure with TI and Chairmanship of the TI Foundation.” In addition to serving as Chair of the Texas Instruments Foundation, Self serves as Director of The Eugene McDermott Foundation, using both as a platform to continued promotion of the arts in Dallas.

In addition to his contributions to the DSO, Texas Instruments Foundation, and The Eugene McDermott Foundation, he has served on the board of directors and in committee roles with the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas and as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate (CASA).

Sam received an MBA degree from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and a BS degree in business administration from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina. A native of South Carolina, he and his wife Diana have blended family of four children and seven grandchildren.

To learn more about the TACA Silver Cup luncheon, sponsorship and tickets, please visit taca-arts.org/silvercup. To make a gift to TACA, please contact TACA at development@taca-arts.org or 214.520.3930.

Media Contact: Brett Gray, Brett@BrettGrayPR.com, 214.557.6233

About TACA  

TACA (The Arts Community Alliance) supports excellence and impact in the arts through grant-making, capacity building, and thought leadership. TACA envisions an innovative, inclusive, sustainable cultural sector recognized for its essential contribution to a vibrant, prosperous community. Since its founding in 1967, TACA has worked to establish North Texas’ cultural community as one of the strongest in the nation. TACA’s growing investment in the arts translates to new premieres and productions, impactful residencies and community initiatives, and more opportunities for artists and audiences to connect – all striving to make Dallas a dynamic city and a great place to live and work.

For more information about TACA, call 214-520-3930 or visit taca-arts.org. Connect with TACA on Facebook at facebook.com/tacadallas, Twitter at @TACADallas or on Instagram at @TACADallas.

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