Group of four awards on table.

NEA Jazz Masters Fellowships

The NEA Jazz Masters Fellowship is the highest honor that our nation bestows on jazz artists. Each year since 1982, the program has elevated to its ranks a select number of living legends who have made exceptional contributions to the advancement of jazz. For more information, read our brief history of the program.

On April 1, 2023, the National Endowment for the Arts honored the 2023 NEA Jazz Masters—Regina CarterKenny GarrettLouis Hayes, and Sue Mingus—at a concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. The concert webcast is now available on-demand:

NEA Jazz Masters 40th Anniversary Publication

Tribute Concerts (2012-2022) | Photo Gallery

2023 NEA Jazz Masters Fellows


Regina Carter

Violinist, Educator

Kenny Garrett

Saxophonist, Composer, Arranger, Bandleader

Louis Hayes

Drummer, Bandleader

Sue Mingus

Author, Archivist, Band Manager, Educator, Musical Director, Record Producer

Nominate an NEA Jazz Master Fellow!

The Arts Endowment encourages nominations from the public of a broad range of individuals who have been significant to the field of jazz through vocal and instrumental performance, creative leadership, and education.
Make a Nomination!

Recent NEA Jazz Masters Podcasts

Remembering the Late Ahmad Jamal

1994 NEA Jazz Master, Pianist, and Composer

Regina Carter part 2

Violinist and 2023 NEA Jazz Master

Regina Carter

Violinist and 2023 NEA Jazz Master