Mesa Mayor John Giles this week honored Troy Kotsur, a Mesa native and the first deaf man to win an Academy Award, with a key to the city.
The event took place Thursday, Aug. 11, at the Mesa Arts Center with family, friends and supporters gathered, according to a release.
“We’re beyond proud of Troy’s accomplishments and so thrilled to have the opportunity to celebrate him in his hometown,” Giles said in the release.
“Troy’s story is one of perseverance, and he sets a remarkable example of dedication and commitment in achieving one of the highest honors of his field.”
Kotsur was awarded an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in March for his role in the film "CODA."
He was also recognized with a Screen Actors Guild Award, Critics’ Choice Award, Gotham Award, Independent Spirit Award and BAFTA Award for the same role.
Kotsur has been acting and directing for more than 20 years, including as a Tusken Raider on Disney+’s "The Mandalorian," wherein he created an adapted form of sign language for that series and "The Book of Boba Fett."
“It is such a special honor to receive the key to the city of Mesa, the place where I was born and raised, and will always consider home. I’m grateful for the love and support of everyone in the community who have stood by me and supported me through the years,” Kotsur said.
“I’m very proud to be able to share this recognition with my family and friends, right here in my hometown.”
Kotsur’s father, Leonard Kotsur, was Mesa’s police chief.
His brothers, Brian and Kevin, also had careers in public safety, serving as the city of Mesa’s Fire and Medical deputy chief and as chief of police in Avondale, respectively. The actor's grandfather, Joe True, retired from the Mesa Police Department as the city’s first motor officer.
Troy Kotsur is a graduate of Mesa’s Westwood High School and studied at Gallaudet University.
He has collected acting and directing credits that include a role in the Tony-award-winning run of "Big River" on Broadway, several guest appearances on television and directing the film "No Ordinary Hero: The SuperDeafy Movie."