David Warner is excited! He’s delighted to be the new Artistic Director of Darke County Center for the Arts, enthusiastic about the upcoming season, thrilled to be working in historic Henry St. Clair Memorial Hall, and invigorated about the challenges ahead. And if you know David, who seems to know almost everybody, you aren’t surprised by any of the above.
David assumed his position with DCCA on July 1, so has already been actively involved in Barbecue and Blues, the organization’s highly successful summertime bash on the Greenville Public Library lawn, as well as the Missoula Children’s Theatre residency culminating in a charming musical production starring local students. But the core of his new job begins now, as David attends the Arts Midwest Conference in Minneapolis where he’ll gain his first opportunity to rub elbows with those creative, energetic, and fascinating folk who are are his colleagues, useful educational and professional development opportunities will be offered, and skilled artists will showcase their talents. Need I say that David is really excited about all of this?
And DCCA officials are excited about David’s taking on this challenge. He had been serving on the DCCA board for a couple of years when previous Artistic Director Keith Rawlins, the first person to serve in that position, announced his decision to retire after a 15-year stint finding and scheduling all the artists on DCCA’s itinerary, overseeing all aspects of DCCA presentations, plus many more duties and chores. As David and the other trustees considered what to do next and who they might find to take over this vital job, David realized that he really, really wanted to do it—the only complication being that he already had a full-time job that he loved.
David works for local electric-motor maker Ramco, so he went to Ramco president Dan Seger to discuss the possibility of taking on this part-time, but quite time-consuming job that he found so very appealing. Knowing David’s work ethic and time management skills, his boss said “Go for it; we’ll support you in any way we can,” thereby fulfilling the company’s statement of purpose which is “to improve the lives of our employees so they can strengthen their families and communities.” Actually, Ramco’s philosophy dovetails perfectly with the commitment David and his wife Sharon share to serve the community they have always called home.
David’s qualifications for this job are many. His musical career began when he was a very young high school student and his school band director enlisted the talented young drummer to join him as he performed with local bands at clubs in Dayton; his long experience as a musician has taught David a great deal about performance and production. Additionally, he gained management skills useful to almost any position through his on-the-job training at Darke County employers including Witt Plastics, GTI, and Klockner Pentaplast as well as at Ramco. The always busy 1983 Grenville High School graduate is involved in many local organizations and events including The Gathering at Garst, where he has for the past few years booked the outstanding entertainment performing throughout the festive weekend.
As for his plans for DCCA’s future, David stated, “I want to build on the legacy of all those who have gone before, maintaining the quality and diversity people expect from DCCA.” In addition to the wonder of presenting artists in Memorial Hall, David enjoys the variety of the Coffeehouse Series, and is awed by the impact of Arts In Education. “The start of my interest in music came when I was in third grade; after closely watching the drummer at an in-school concert I went home and announced that I wanted to learn to play the drums. AIE programs leave a lasting impact,” he stated.
As David excitedly embarks on his new adventure, arts lovers eagerly anticipate experiencing the results of his endeavors to bring the best available programs to our community. Sounds as though exciting times await us all!
Marilyn Delk is a director of the Darke County Center for the Arts and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.