For Bill Hopper: Arts more than a position

Published 6:06 pm Tuesday, July 19, 2022

For Bill Hopper, being president of the Troy Arts Council was more than a position. Not a calling as such but more than just a position.

“I’m not an artist but I appreciate art and have great admiration for those who are,” Hopper said. “It has been an honor to serve as president of the Troy Arts Council for five years and to be a part of furthering the arts in Troy and Pike County.”

Bill Hopper

The presidency of the TAC was not a position Hopper sought.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“Joel Williams was president of the Troy Arts Council and he ask me to be on the board,” Hopper said, laughing. “I didn’t know, he was thinking that, moving forward, I might consider being president.”

Although it was not a position, Hopper sought, he was willing to accept the responsibility of heading a very artistic and knowledgeable board.

“I learned as we moved forward and I had to learn fast,” Hopper said. “I enjoyed learning about art and artists and being among those who know and appreciate art and work to move the arts forward.”

Promoting the arts during COVID-19 was challenging but the TAC turned to visual programming as a way keep the arts alive when the community was “safer at home.”

Although, not fully recovered from the pandemic, arts organizations are striving for ways to bring live entertainment back to the forefront.

“Times have changed and we have to find new ways to showcase art entertainment,” Hopper said. “My term as TAC president actually ran out in 2020 but I continued as president because there wasn’t a lot we could do.

“But, the pandemic changed many things and I realized that now is the time for young people to become more involved. The world is different and they need to step up and move the arts forward.”

That forward movement, Hopper said, could include the joining together of local arts organizations to work for the common good.

Hopper said his interest in the arts will not diminish. He is chairman of the Johnson Center for the Arts board of directors and on the planning commission.”

“I will be involved in the arts in some way because I know how important the arts are to our city and our county,” he said. “The arts make a difference in lives and in communities. I want to remain a part of that.”

Dave Camwell is now president of the TAC president ; Maggie Hammond is vice president. The new board members are Olaf Lieb, Jaye Henderson, Ryan Wagstaff, Carrie Jaxon, Shequetha McKenzie, Teresa Sims and Kelly Ware.