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Simpson named executive director of Arts project - UPDATE
By Rick Mann, Staff writer / Frisco Enterprise
Monday, November 24, 2008
Former Frisco Mayor Mike Simpson was hired Monday as the executive director of the Arts of Collin County, replacing James Baudoin who resigned in July. The board of directors for the arts project make the announcement at the Allen City Hall.
Simpson was named the new arts director after a subcommittee of the Arts of Collin County Commission narrowed the field from 50 nationwide applicants. His relationship with the cities of Collin County and his passion for the arts project were two of the main reasons stated for his hiring.
“We’re excited to have Mike in this role,” said Steve Matthews, president of the ACC. “He has been a success in everything he has done. His established relationships in the community, countless accomplishments as mayor and knowledge of public and private financial projects make Mike uniquely qualified to help lead [this project].”
Matthews said the ACC felt Simpson was the best-suited candidate for the position.
“As the mayor of Frisco, Mike was one of strongest champions,” Matthews said. “He spent his time as mayor of Frisco enriching the lives of those who lived in Frisco. Now he will have an opportunity to do the same thing for all the people of Collin County. He knows all the players in the area and brings with him lots of contacts. No one knows the process better than Mike.”
Raising the necessary funds to get the project under construction is Simpson’s first order of business.
“These are tough economic times but I read everyday about people giving money for projects they deem important,” Simpson said. “I’m excited about the opportunity to raise the money we need to get started.”
The ACC needs close to $20 million before ground can be broken on the property located southeast of Custer and State Highway 121 in Allen. Simpson believes he has the right plan to get the funds in.
“I want to continue going after the large naming gifts,” he said. “Every performing arts hall has naming opportunities and this is no different, whether it’s for the land or the building. We will continue to seek large contributions.
“We will also involve everyone in the county. Individual families who have children who perform and might perform in this hall just might want to contribute. We want to make it easy for them to do so. This arts hall will be very important to those families and important to the future of the kids,” he said.
The final point to his plan is to involve everyone else.
“With the first two parts we have both ends of the contributing spectrum. We also want to include those people who want to give $10,000, $15,000, $50,000. We want to make sure that everyone who wants to be involved can be involved.”
I SAY FRISCO IS NOT THAT BIG OF LOSERS THAT WOULD GIVE IN TO THIS
LOOK, EVEN WITH A TERRIBLE ECONOMY THESE WINDBAGS ONLY KNOW HOW TO TRY AND FLEECE MORE MONEY FROM THE PEOPLE
THEY HAVE NO SHAME AND THAT IS WHY THEY ARE PROFESSIONAL POLITICANS
Now, the community of Frisco and the whole of Collin County has a unique opportunity to distinguish itself from other urban sprawl areas in the country. To establish itself as an art center makes a lot of sense on many levels. It is about fostering and enriching community in a manner that elevates the quality of life for our citizens and our community’s identity And the opportunity to set aside a choice area of land as an art park will not last forever. We cannot wait until cookie cutter strip malls and subdivisions have consumed every open field before thinking about such a plan. Now is the time.
This is an excellent plan. It is the kind of thing that folks In the future will reflect
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