Grants, Awards & Honors


Adele Filene Student Presenter Grant

College and University Collection Care Grant

CSA Travel Research Grant

Stella Blum Student Research Grant

Small Museum Collection Care Grant

Angels Project

Awards &

Award of Excellence in Costume Design/Technology

CSA Fellow Award

Millia Davenport Publication Award

Richard Martin Exhibition Award

Scholars' Roundtable Honor




CSA Costume Design Award


The CSA Costume Design Award is given annually to recognize excellence in costume design in a production for theatre, film, television, or other media that involves dressing living performers. Award-winning productions demonstrate creative, innovative, and effective approaches to costume design. The designer of an award-winning production receives a certificate, an invitation to present a brief overview of the design process at the National Symposium the following year, and a $500 honorarium to help defray travel and symposium expenses (if the awardee is not a member of CSA, part of the honorarium will be applied toward membership in CSA).


The CSA Costume Design Award, first presented in 2008, reflects the Costume Society of America’s interest in and encouragement of creative visual design. The award has recognized excellence in costume design in various ways over the years: originally awarded for an entire body of work, the current award is given for excellence in a single production.


To be eligible for the award a production must:

  • be for living performers, whether for theatre, dance, opera, film, television, the internet, or other entertainment performances in traditional or non-traditional venues
  • have been performed in the 12 months preceding the nomination deadline
  • Entry Deadline

    Nominations for 2016 must be received by January 31, 2016.

    Selection Criteria

    Productions will be evaluated by:

  • demonstrated creative, innovative, and imaginative approach to costume design
  • effective collaboration with the director, design team, and production team
  • contribution of the costume design to the storyline and characterization of the performers
  • quality of the presentation of costume design renderings
  • quality of executed costumes and overall excellence as represented in submitted images and supporting materials
  • Award Schedule

    Nominees will be notified of the results by April 15, 2016. Award results will be announced at the CSA National Symposium. The award-winning designer is invited to present an overview of the design concept and process at the following year’s CSA National Symposium and will receive a $500 honorarium to help defray travel and symposium expenses.

    Entry Procedure

    Complete the application (see below) and submit electronically (as a single folder using a free large file sharing application such as Dropbox or Google Drive).

    Questions? Contact Karan Feder, Chair, CSA Costume Design Award Committee, at

    Costume Design Award Entry Form

    Designer name(s) _______________________________________
    Email ___________________ Telephone ____________________
    Address ______________________________________________
    Production name _______________________________________
    Production venue _______________________________________
    Production dates _______________________________________

    Provide no more than 25 clearly labeled images (which may include short video clips) that give a visual overview the production, selected costume renderings, realized costumes, and the inspiration/research underlying the creative work of the designer. (All digital images submitted via Dropbox or Google Drive must be sized no larger than 72 dpi. If video clips are submitted, do not upload these but provide a direct Internet link for viewing the file.)

    Also briefly describe the following:
    1) The medium in which the production was presented, including the venue and audience
    2) The concept for the production, including the director’s vision
    3) The collaborative process with the director, design team, and production team
    4) The inspirations and challenges of the creative costume design process
    5) How the costumes advanced the storyline and the characterization of the performers
    6) The costume budget and costume production facilities
    7) The practical production process, detailing how the costumes were executed

    Send submissions to:

    Receipt of entries will be acknowledged within one week.


    CSA Award of Excellence in Costume Design/Technology Recipients

    Award of Excellence in Professional Costume Design/Technology:
    Deborah Nadoolman Landis

    Deborah Nadoolman Landis’s distinguished career includes costume design for films such as Animal House, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Coming to America (for which she was nominated for an Academy Award™), as well as for the video Michael Jackson’s Thriller. In addition to serving as president of the Costume Designer’s Guild, she is also a celebrated author, curator, and professor.

    Professional Award:
    Martin Pakledinaz, 1953-2012

    Martin Pakledinaz designed on Broadway, in regional theatre, and internationally for dance, musicals, opera, and film. His creative talents won two Tony Awards and were shared with aspiring theatre artists through teaching. The award honorarium benefits a student scholarship in his name at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.

    Early Career Professional/Student Award:
    Albulena Borovci

    Albulena Borovici earned an MFA in Costume Design from Carnegie Mellon University in May 2013 and also holds a BFA in Scenography from the Academy of the Arts at University of Prishtina. She has studied at the University of Montana and in 2013 received USITT’s prestigious Zelma H. Weisfeld Design & Technology Award.

    2009 - 2012:
    No award granted

    May Routh

    May Routh is a costume designer in theater, film, and television. Her film work includes: Ronin, Newsies, Splash, My Favorite Year, Being There, and The Man Who Fell to Earth, while her television work includes Andersonville and Luci and Desi: Before the Laughter. Ms. Routh’s work earned two Emmy Award nominations and has been featured in notable exhibitions and publications.


    For application materials, specific eligibility requirements, or more detailed information, please contact the National Office. Include the name of the grant in your request.