Coca-Cola’s Joseph Brake and Acclaimed Artist Steve Tobin to Receive 1st Lifetime Achievement Awards at Inaugural Linny Awards Nov. 10

The ArtsQuest Foundation is pleased to announce that Coca-Cola Bottling Company’s Joseph Brake and renowned artist Steve Tobin will be the recipients of the inaugural Lifetime Achievement Awards at the 1st Linny Awards presented by Cornerstone Advisors this fall at SteelStacks.

Brake, who will receive the Lifetime Achievement – Volunteer in the Arts Award, and Tobin, who will be presented with the Lifetime Achievement Artist Award, will receive their honors during the Linny Awards celebration Nov. 10, 6 p.m., at the ArtsQuest Center at SteelStacks, 101 Founders Way, Bethlehem.

A longtime volunteer in the Lehigh Valley region, Joe Brake has been involved with numerous community, arts and cultural organizations for more than three decades. The Vice President and General Manager of Coca-Cola Bottling Companies of Lehigh Valley and Chester County, Brake currently serves on the boards of the Lehigh Valley IronPigs Charities and Best Inc. and as a member of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce Board of Governors. He has also served as member of the Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America – Minsi Trails Council, a member of the Executive Committee of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce, and a member of the boards of the Bach Choir, Lehigh Valley Partnership and the Miracle League of the Lehigh Valley.

Brake is the recipient of the Priscilla Payne Hurd Award from the Bethlehem Chamber of Commerce, the Lehigh Valley PICPA Service Award from the LifePath Foundation and the Distinguished Citizen Award from the Boy Scouts of America – Minsi Trails Council. He was the honorary chair of fundraisers and campaigns for the American Lung Association, the Bethlehem Rotary Club, Muscular Dystrophy Association and the Good Shepherd Rehabilitation Pediatric Hospital “Gala in the Garden.”He and his wife Mary Pat reside in Coopersburg and are the proud parents of two grown children, Dan and Kelly, and five grandchildren.

An internationally-acclaimed sculptor and glass artist whose work is featured in galleries and collections around the globe, Steve Tobin is an artist whose work has been deeply inspired by nature. A graduate of Tulane University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in mathematics, the Coopersburg resident is perhaps best known for his Trinity Root, the large-scale sculpture placed at St. Paul’s Chapel in Lower Manhattan, New York City, in 2005.

During the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, the chapel had been partly shielded from damage by a 70-year-old sycamore tree. Tobin created the bronze sculpture of the stump and roots of the tree, financing the $330,000 sculpture himself by taking out a home equity loan to do so.

During his career, Tobin has exhibited his work throughout North America including the United States Botanic Garden in Washington, D.C.; James A. Michener Art Museum of Doylestown, Pa.; and the Museum of Art & Design and American Craft Museum in New York City. His iconic root sculptures can be found in major cities around the globe, ranging from Calgary, Canada to Osaka, Japan. In addition, his art is featured in permanent public and private collections including those of the White House, Philadelphia Museum of Art, King Faisal’s Palace in Saudi Arabia and the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Wash.

“As an artist and philanthropist, Linny Fowler had an immeasurable impact on the arts in our region and the Linny Awards are designed to recognize our thriving arts community, including our talented artists, arts educators, students and supporters of the arts,” says ArtsQuest Foundation Executive Director Jeff Parks. “Joe Brake and Steve Tobin are two individuals who truly embody the spirit of what these awards are all about – dedication and passion for the arts and our community.

“Joe has done so much for our region and inspired so many through his generosity and his volunteerism, while Steve has really helped place the Lehigh Valley on the map as a home for world-class artists, so we are truly honored to present these two men with our inaugural Lifetime Achievement Awards.”

The Lifetime Achievement Artist Award and Volunteer in the Arts Award are two of three prestigious honors chosen by the ArtsQuest Foundation Board to recognize distinguished individuals from the region for their longtime commitment and dedication to the arts. Earlier this summer, Oscar and Tony Award winning costume designer Ann Roth of Bangor was named the recipient of the Linnys’ first Pinnacle of the Arts Award. All three recipients will receive their lifetime achievement awards during the 2016 Linny Awards, set for Nov. 10, 6 p.m., in the ArtsQuest Center’s Musikfest Café.

Tickets for the Linny Awards are on sale now at All proceeds from the event will go to support the nonprofit ArtsQuest Foundation, founded in 2002 by Mrs. Fowler. For more information on the ArtsQuest Foundation and the Linny Awards, please visit