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Mancos Creative District shakes up leadership

Group seeks new hire to replace two co-directors

The Mancos Creative District plans to change its leadership this spring by hiring a single director to replace its two current co-directors.

Sarah Syverson and Carol Mehesy have shared leadership for about a year, but Syverson announced March 19 they both plan to step down. Both plan to stay involved with the district on a volunteer basis, but they will leave their paid positions by the end of April. The district is accepting applications through April 2 for a director.

Syverson said she started working for the Creative District after stepping down as director of the Montezuma School to Farm Project because she thought the part-time job would leave more time for her own creative works, like the popular Raven Narratives storytelling series, which she organizes alongside Tom Yoder. But she said that turned out not to be the case.

“I always throw myself into these director positions,” she said. “I haven’t had the time for my creative pursuits that I promised myself.”

As a volunteer, Syverson said she hopes to incorporate those pursuits into the Creative District. She is involved with a playwriting group from Silverton, and she said they may bring plays to Mancos. The Raven Narratives will be in Mancos this year with a “storytelling slam.”

In the past, Mehesy has been primarily in charge of the district’s grant writing, and according to Syverson, she will continue to help the new director in that area as needed. Mehesy was on vacation and unavailable for comment.

The job description for the director includes grant writing and fundraising, as well as planning and marketing district events, coordinating volunteers, communicating with Colorado Creative Industries and other duties.

Job qualifications for the director include a degree in a related field, at least two years of management experience and skills in public relations, managing a budget, communication and other areas. Syverson said the district has received a few promising applications.

“I’m really excited about the potential applicants,” she said. “It’s a cool step forward.”

The co-directors’ last official day on the job will come at the end of April, but Syverson said they will be available to help train the director. In the meantime, she said she will be planning the Creative District’s Grand Summer Nights series of artistic events, which starts May 26.

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