Artist John Ross Palmer’s then-husband, attorney Ryan Lindsay, began regularly writing the John Ross Palmer Art Blog when he joined John’s business in 2009. During Art Chicago 2009, John bragged to the Art Chicago Sales Director, Lisa Witherite, that Ryan writes that Blog “every single day.” While Ryan was pleased with John’s enthusiasm, he then was thrust into the difficult job of typing out and posting the funny, inspiring and informative John Ross Palmer Art Blog every day. But, Ryan got into a groove and began to thoroughly love telling stories about John, their travel adventures, cherished art collectors and, of course, their pets. Over time, the John Ross Palmer Art Blog became extremely popular–with literally hundreds of visitors per day. At the conclusion of 2009, there was a Count-Down on the John Ross Palmer Art Blog with the subject entitled “Noteworthy Collectors & Individuals.” This list was determined solely by Ryan and John. They looked back at the entire year and wrote down names of individuals or organizations that had the most positive impact on the business of John Ross Palmer Art. These individuals or organizations did not always did not have to be collectors of John’s art–they could also be included if they helped us out tremendously in circumstances not related to sales. For example, John and Ryan’s Executive Assistant Amanda Assali made the list because she stuck with them through crushing economic times. Ryan’s former boss, Mr. Donn C. Fullenweider, made the list because he supported Ryan’s new career move and gave his blessing to Ryan’s dream of working with John and promoting his career as a professional artist.
In 2009, the Number One Noteworthy Collector & Individual was Mr. Christopher Brown. Christopher was at the top of the list for several reasons. First, he authored the book The Art of Meaningful Living that featured John's artwork throughout. Christopher orchestrated book signings around the Southwest United States for John and himself as well as a formal book release at the Book Expo America in New York City. Further, Christopher and his wife Melissa acquired a piece from John’s most exclusive series of his career, Satori 2009. Christopher is not just an accomplished author and John Ross Palmer art collector–he is a first class friend above everything else.
In 2010, the Number One Noteworthy Collector & Individual was the Donna & Tony Vallone Family. During 2010, the Vallones became the world’s premier collectors of John Ross Palmer public artwork. They commissioned John to complete a massive mural at their amazing Italian eatery, Ciao Bello. Further, in Ciao Bello, all of the enormous abstract pieces in the main dining area, the Italian-inspired pieces above the glass kitchen and the whimsical pieces in the bar area are all original Palmer’s. At Tony’s, Palmer is proud to showcase three Escapism panels in the San Remo Room, a massive Escapism piece in the wine library and a Tony Vallone biography piece in the back foyer. For the Vallones to showcase John Ross Palmer’s work next to prominent artists such as Robert Rauschenberg and Jesus Morales amounted to one of the greatest accomplishments in his career as a professional artist.
In the Spring of 2011, Ryan and John were treated to dinner with Mr. & Mrs. Vallone at their flagship restaurant, Tony’s. During the dinner conversation, John and Ryan told them how honored they were as well as grateful for their huge support of John and his art career. They then politely asked the Vallones if they could honor them by formally naming this annual prize “The Vallone Award.” They graciously agreed and were flattered by the idea.
Beginning in 2009, the Vallone Award has been presented to Palmer's top collectors each year. it is purely a mathematical determination based on sales.