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Delaware Arts Alliance hires new executive director

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The Wilmington-based Delaware Arts Alliance (DAA) has a new leader.

Neil Kirschling is the organization's new executive director, taking over Monday, June 27, 2022.

He succeeds Jessica Ball who left the Arts Alliance last November to become the director of the Delaware Division of the Arts (DDOA).

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Delaware Arts Alliance
Neil Kirschling

“My personal passion for a long time has been performing and being a patron of the arts," said Kirschling. "And I’ve worked in advocacy and policy now for nearly a decade. So to get to marry what I do at work with what I love outside of work, I just couldn’t be more excited for the opportunity.”

Kirschling comes from Rodel, a nonprofit that does statewide advocacy work in education.

He says his priorities include relationship building so the Delaware Arts Alliance can remain a unifying voice in the arts and culture sector.

Kirschling and the group’s board hope to start that work with a listening tour to hear from members and non-members which will help Kirschling familiarize himself with the key players and organizations around the State.

He says that includes artists, patrons and anyone working in the arts.

He says he also hopes to hit the ground running in other areas.

“Some other big priorities for the year I know will be to support the State’s arts and culture caucus down in the General Assembly and also help implement a $1 million grant we received from ARPA funding to really promote the creative economy as essential to the State’s economic development, as we continue to come out of this pandemic,” he said.

Kirschling says the arts sector is not out of the woods just yet and it’s important to remember just how big a hit many organizations took during the COVID pandemic.

So he also encourages all Delawareans to get out this summer and enjoy a concert, go to a museum or see a show to support the arts.

Delaware Public Media' s arts coverage is made possible, in part, by support from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency dedicated to nurturing and supporting the arts in Delaware, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts.