DetNews: Freep columnist Riley gets new Detroit Arts gig
The City of Detroit announced Saturday that Detroit Free Press columnist Rochelle Riley has been appointed the city’s director of arts and culture.
The position is newly created, a news release said, and Riley is expect to work with artists, entrepreneurs, cultural organizations and philanthropic founders “to advocate for, promote and develop arts and culture.”
Mayor Mike Duggan said he’s wanted to fill this role for some time, but it wasn’t until Riley that he believed he had found someone with the “stature and passion needed” for the position.
“Rochelle has the respect and credibility to build relationships between the City and its major cultural institutions and potential funders, as well as budding artists and entertainers. She will serve as the strategic leader and coordinator for all of our efforts to support Detroit’s creative community,” Duggan said in a statement.
Riley accepted a buyout from the newspaper in February. She is expected to start in her new role on May 27.
In a statement, Riley said she understands that arts, culture and entertainment are a way of life in Detroit.
“Detroit does not have a creative corridor. Detroit is a creative corridor, with people filing in from around the world every year. It is time for Detroit to not just celebrate its past and better support its present but to create a future where innovation and new art and music and theater and dance are not just welcome, but celebrated and supported. The arts and culture and entertainment industry is a multi-billion industry in this city, one that can produce jobs and opportunities that will re-establish Detroit as a thriving creative epicenter,” she said.