The Oregon Arts Commission and Trust (director search) stakeholder survey results are in
and fascinating to dig through (especially all of the write ins, just scroll down).
1st thing, there has been no statement describing why Christine D'Arcy was let go... though some of us were tipped off that something was odd months before. I'd prefer the state would just be transparent before I go publishing off of what scraps I and many others know. Not knowing this crucial bit of information makes attracting good applicants more difficult. There is a widespread transparency problem that any new director will need to fix, but who fixes the state run oversight?
Communication was easily the highest ranked category and people seemed very insistent on it being an arts person not a business person.
It also seems like Oregon is growing up, because many pointed out how many Oregonians just don't care what is being done in other states and insisted that the new director not be an isolationist. I believe this is crucial since support for the arts in Oregon is limited compared to other states (including California and Washington). We need to develop and keep competitive advantages and that takes innovative new thinking rather than rewarding cloistered navel gazing. Also, diffusing the Eugene & Portland vs. the rest of the state polemics is obviously a good thing.
I'm uncertain why it seems the two jobs in two agencies seem to be perpetually toggled together. Something important might be gained if the Cultural Trust and Commission were run by separate entities, though the cost savings by combining them is obvious. Overall the whole magoo here is obvious except for why the previous director had to go. You just can't hire someone new if you can't be honest about what happened with a predecessor. D'Arcy was good at her job so the smokescreen from Salem seems very odd and designed to protect those who still have their jobs.
There will be a meeting on Monday
to ratify the hiring criteria so the search can begin.
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