Press Release: Two Top Companies Team Up for 2017 Emmett Award

For immediate release

MEMPHIS, TN - (April 4, 2017) – ArtsMemphis will present its 7th Annual Emmett O’Ryan Award for Artistic Inspiration at a ceremony this Thursday, April 6th, at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art.  The “Emmett” is given each year to a local artist who has demonstrated creative and civic leadership within the Memphis arts community.  The winner receives a $10,000 cash award.

The award is named in honor of Emmett O’Ryan, an avid art collector who was a founding board member of Metropolitan Bank.  The winning artist is selected by a committee composed of Metropolitan Bank associates, members of ArtsMemphis’ Artist Advisory Council, and representatives of Mr. O’Ryan’s family.  The three finalists are:

  • Carl E. Moore, a local visual artist, best known for his vivid, high-contrast paintings.
  • Maritza Davila, a highly regarded printmaker who teaches at Memphis College of Art.
  • Jennifer Sargent, an award-winning fiber artist.

“Emmett O’Ryan was a much-beloved and respected member of the Metropolitan Bank family,” said Phillip May, Market CEO, Metropolitan Bank Memphis. “This award is a wonderful way to honor Mr. O’Ryan’s memory and his contributions to the bank and to the arts while supporting the work of an outstanding artist in our community.”

While Metropolitan will continue their longtime commitment to the award, they are partnering, this year, with the law firm, Butler Snow.  “We are excited to have Butler Snow join us as a partner in the event,” May noted, “as this program has grown over the past seven years to become one of the most significant awards for local visual artists in Memphis.”

“ArtsMemphis is thrilled to see this kind of collaborative sponsorship from leaders in the business community,” said ArtsMemphis President & CEO Elizabeth Rouse.  “Having  two such generous sponsors in Metropolitan Bank and Butler Snow means a great deal to the local artists that we serve.”

About Metropolitan Bank:
Metropolitan, the banking subsidiary of Metropolitan BancGroup, Inc., is a billion dollar financial institution. After its successful acquisition of Bancsouth Financial Corporation and its subsidiary, Bank of the South, in 2008 and its acquisition of a Tennessee state bank charter, Metropolitan currently operates eight full-service banking offices in Mississippi and Tennessee. Metropolitan offers a full range of financial products and services, including personal and business transaction accounts, online and mobile banking and bill payment, mortgages, home equity lines of credit, construction, commercial and consumer financing, treasury management, Xpress deposit, remote deposit capture and merchant card services. For more information, visit 

About Butler Snow
Butler Snow is a law firm with offices in 22 different locations throughout the country, along with offices in London and Singapore.  Butler Snow has been a leader in client service for over 60 years.  Attorneys and professionals at Butler Snow pride themselves on innovation, teamwork, value, service, focus and responsiveness.  This approach allow Butler Snow to provide its clients with an elevated level of legal services.  For more information, visit

About ArtsMemphis:

For more than 50 years, ArtsMemphis has been sustaining Memphis's world-renowned cultural vitality.  ArtsMemphis achieves this mission by amplifying awareness, driving support, and building capacity and connections of artists and organizations through grants and services.  In 2016, ArtsMemphis awarded nearly $3 million in grants to 68 different organizations and 20 individual artists.  For more information, visit

For inquiries or additional information, please contact William Murray, Director of Development and Communications for ArtsMemphis, at 901-341-0401 or [email protected]

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