THE NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS BESTOWS UPON DIANNE THE HIGHEST HONOR FOR JAZZ IN THE U.S.
— JAZZ MASTER
The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Jazz Masters award is widely described as United States’ highest honor for jazz. In addition to Dianne, the 2018 Jazz Masters are pianist Joanne Brackeen, guitarist Pat Metheny and producer Todd Barkan. The new class was inducted in a tribute concert and ceremony at the Kennedy Center on April 16, 2018. Each inductee delivered remarks but did not perform — that task was left to colleagues and peers. Dianne performed at the 2017 induction celebration, as she paid tribute to her friend Dee Dee Bridgewater.