The Inside Scoop - Our Latest Board Meeting

I didn’t know what to expect as I drove to McKinney to attend my first Verdigris board meeting. When I pulled up to the charming house, just a few blocks from the lovely historic downtown, I was greeted by Kyra, one of our board members. She wore a cooking apron and a kind smile. As I entered the home, I encountered a busy sea of good-natured conversation, some familiar faces and some new to me. The aura of the home was warm and cozy, and I was immediately greeted by Kyle and Phil, the owners of The Cultured Cup, who were passing out their very own delicious tea cocktails. I greeted Rachel, another new member of the board on the fundraising committee, and we briefly chatted about life and especially her adorable infant son. To be honest, it was probably best for me that her son was not in attendance that evening: the last time he was at a meeting I barely heard two words in many attempts to get his attention or coax him to giggle.

I was honored to meet RafiQ, a Design Strategist and the co-founder of Arttitude (an art platform for LGBTQ+ artists and communities). With his warm smile and genuine interest, I felt like we had long been friends. Similarly, I was finally introduced to Stephen, the incredibly talented visual artist who painted all of the images seen in the most recent Verdigris booklet announcing our 2018/19 season. I had already followed him on Instagram and am a huge fan of his artwork.

After the conversations began to lull and fifteen minutes had passed since the top of the hour, our chef extraordinaire, the same Kyra, gathered us at one long table and explained our South American inspired cuisine for the evening. Everything from the curry spiced beef to the dark flourless chocolate cake was full of her culture and experience. We were all in for a big treat!

It was inspiring to be at a table with so many artistic, professional, and kind people. A few members of the board, like myself, sing in the Verdigris ensemble. Others, I had seen in the audiences at our Verdigris performances. Still others were from the Dallas arts community and had eagerly jumped on board (literally) to be of service to our thriving, new non-profit. Sam sat across from Cannon, the presenter for the evening.

Yes, Cannon covered logistics in his presentation and mapped out game plans for committees and individuals board members, but the heart of the meeting was in the energy. Each person spoke about their vision for Verdigris and their inspiration in being a part of such of a unique organization. As we shared ideas, talked about upcoming events, and marveled at the success of last season, I found myself proud and humbled to be a part of this colorful group of caring individuals. The feeling of inspiration was palpable in this little space. A beautiful energy engulfed the evening for me and I felt uplifted and honored by the end of it. I left with a full heart and an eagerness to take action. I am so very grateful for Verdigris, the kind heart of artistic director, Sam, and the exciting direction and warmth of the individuals who make up our board. Look out Dallas! Here we come!

Lauren Stroh