Today I am the Executive Director of the Downtown Association of Santa Cruz, a role which I’m frankly pretty passionate about, and have had the honor to serve in since fall of 2008. I am the co-founder, along with my good friend Kirby Scudder, of First Friday Santa Cruz, an amazing, monthly arts and community focused event that has been going on in Santa Cruz for over a decade. I continue to direct First Friday with my wife Abra Allan, who is the Director of Motion Pacific Dance and among many things produces Santa Cruz Dance Week. I have been very fortunate to serve this community and to be enriched deeply by this community in a number of ways. I had a short tenure as the Director of the 418 Project, a center for dance and movement presentation, exploration and education. I helped David Jackman to build and run SoSayWe, a late night eatery and cultural epicenter from which many an artistic collaboration was born. We produced many years of the 7th sense fashion show, creating a vehicle for dozens of artists. I served for many years on the City’s Arts Commission. I helped Crystal Birns and others launch Pecha Kucha Santa Cruz, I have worked in the performing arts as a Stage Manager, Designer, Company Manager, Engineer, Production Manager, Publicist, Rigger, Producer, and just about anything else that needed to get done. Someday I will attempt to list the hundreds of inspiring artists who I have had the pleasure to work with.
For most of my life, I have found myself, in one way or another working to build community. From my early days in Santa Cruz, working in collaboration with performing artists to the work I am doing with the local business community and countless projects in between, there seems to be a thread of bringing people together.
Some of the things I get excited about:
Dance as performance
Basketball. Everything about it
A really good scotch
Well crafted stories