We are delighted to announce the appointment of Kathryn Tarter German of Asheville, North Carolina, as our new Executive Director!
A native of Berea, Kentucky, Katy grew up immersed in traditional song, dance, and music. She has served for 15 years as Assistant Director of Berea's Christmas Country Dance School; has been a staff member at family dance camps in Massachusetts, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Idaho; and was Program Director in 2017 for CDSS's Family Week at Pinewoods. She served as a member-at-large on the CDSS Governing Board from 2001-2007 (the first person nominated as part of our intentional effort to bring younger voices to the governing body) and she rejoined the Board in 2016.
As Director, Katy will reside primarily in Asheville, and will combine remote supervision with on-site work with our Massachusetts-based staff. Katy envisions new opportunities to connect CDSS's 300 affiliate groups in the United States and Canada, using technology to create a national conversation centered on traditional arts.
Before accepting the CDSS position, Katy worked as Agency Relations Manager for the MANNA FoodBank in Asheville, supervising a remote team that works with 200 partner agencies to end hunger in western North Carolina. For this work, she was honored by the Asheville Chamber of Commerce as part of its "40 Under 40" program in 2015, recognizing young professionals who demonstrate excellence in their career field.
CDSS President David Millstone said of the Board's selection, "Katy's deep roots give her a heartfelt appreciation of how these tradition-based activities are a powerful way to bring people together. Her understanding of new technologies will help CDSS connect with younger generations to strengthen communities in today's changing culture."
CDSS contracted with TSNE Mission Works in Boston, MA, to guide us through the 10-month executive transition process. Doug Plummer, Transition Committee Chair, is thrilled with the outcome. "Katy brings the best of two worlds for us - deep non-profit management experience, and a lifelong experience of CDSS as an enterprise that changes lives. She is the leader we need to build a sustainable organization."
Katy sent this message to us all: "I am deeply honored to be chosen for this role, especially at this time in the organization's history. CDSS has not only held a place in my heart, it also played an integral role in developing the song and dance community that raised me. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to dedicate my professional life to this organization. Let's spread the joy!"