Let me embrace thee, sour adversity, for wise men say it is the wisest course. - William Shakespeare
In January 2010, I was asked to serve as the interim executive director of the Durango Arts Center for three months. Now, after enjoying two-and-half years at the helm, Im ready to embark on new adventures.
Working here has been some of the hardest and most challenging work in my entire career. Yet I loved all the contact with artists and all those, like me, who love and embrace the arts. My last day will be May 18. Peggy Zemach has been selected by the DAC board of directors as my successor, and she will bring a wealth of talents to the position.
I dont want this column to seem like my swan song, but I to want to state what a valuable organization the DAC is to this region.
The DACs board of directors is exemplary and, in particular, Terry Swan, who just left the presidency but who remains on the board, worked with me so well that we enjoyed raising money, increasing membership and ensuring that all our predecessors felt that their hard work had been sustained for those who love the arts. Dr. Rochelle Mann is the newly elected board president, and she is a scholar, an artist and brings a myriad of talents to the board.
While we still have challenges ahead, we remain a center focused on all the arts. We are one of few non-profits with its own building that operates seven days a week, yet we receive no major city, county, state or federal funding.
We operate three art galleries, an education studio and a theater that runs quality plays and serves as a hub for a countless community activities, including KDURs Furniture as Art, Durango Choral Societys Cabaret, Bluegrass Meltdown, Snowdown Follies, Salt Fire Circus, the Autumn Arts Festival, 10-Minute Play Contest, TOP and Durango Chamber of Commerces American Idol, to name just a few.
The board is working hard to assure that we can be the go-to place for artists. Last fall, with the leadership of Mary Ellen Long, we hosted a national exhibit featuring the works of Dr. Seuss. In April, we will have an international exhibit with Textiles Today, with artists from the United States, Italy and Japan.
We just installed our third artists exhibit at the Durango-La Plata County Airport departure lounge, and we are showcasing our second online exhibit. The Friends of the Arts Library brings cutting-edge artists to the Art Library and the DAC Docents continue to guide and teach about our exhibits and artists. DAC is reaching out to local art galleries and other venues exhibiting art by overseeing First Thursdays art walks that will launch June 7.
The list of activities at DAC is too numerous for me to highlight everything, but I assure you there is a lot going on.
I encourage everyone to become a DAC member as we become only better as our membership grows and weighs in what it wants to see transpire at DAC.
Thank you all for your support, and Im honored to have been involved with DAC. I say with pride that the staff is some of the most extraordinary and talented people I have ever worked with, and Im really going to miss them.
All good things must come to an end, but I wouldnt have wanted it to end any other way or with any other people. Unknown
Reach Sheri Rochford Figgs at firstname.lastname@example.org.