Center for the Performing Arts honors Harveys with 2014 service award

Robert and Helen Harvey of State College are the 2014 recipients of the Center for the Performing Arts at Penn State Distinguished Service Award. The Harveys have helped to ensure the growth of the arts not only at Penn State but also in the community.

“With their fun spirits and passionate support of the Center for the Performing Arts, Bob and Helen Harvey are most deserving of the Distinguished Service Award,” said Barbara Korner, dean of the Penn State College of Arts and Architecture.

“The Harveys’ commitment to the Center for the Performing Arts is inspiring to us all,” said George Trudeau, director of the Center for the Performing Arts. “I am so happy to see them receive this recognition for their long and deep commitment to our programs.”

The Harveys have been Center for the Performing Arts Leadership Circle members since 2006. They first co-sponsored a presentation—Kirov Orchestra—with Glenn and Nancy Gamble. Since then, the couple has sponsored performances by Itzhak Perlman, Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, Martha Graham Dance Company, Paul Taylor Dance Company, Les Grands Ballet Canadiens and Moscow Festival Ballet. They have supported jazz presentations and sponsored parking for various performances.

In addition, the Harveys have volunteered at the Center for the Performing Arts. Bob served as a guide for Eisenhower tours, and Helen recently completed her second term on the Community Advisory Council.

The Harveys have spent a lifetime involved in the arts. They met as musicians in college when they both attended Duff’s Business Institute (now the Everest Institute Pittsburgh). Bob played the alto saxophone and Helen the piano.

Helen went on to earn a master’s degree at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and completed post-graduate work at Carnegie Mellon University. She has participated in an array of dance, theater and graphic design activities.

She and Bob spent a year in Japan while she worked for the Omiya City Board of Education.

Bob retired from People’s Natural Gas Company, while Helen retired after 42 years of teaching English and drama in the Armstrong and Hollidaysburg Area school districts. They have two daughters, Patricia and Ann.

The Distinguished Service Award recognizes significant contributions and support to the Center for the Performing Arts, which has presented the honor annually since 1996.

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Last Updated April 29, 2014