Interview With Diana Pappin: Board Member of the Year
You’ve had a long history with the RSO Board of Directors. How many years have you served and what offices have you held?
I have served on the RSO Board of Directors for many years. This year will finish my second 9 years of service. I’ve served 6 three-year terms, or a total of 18 years. While on the board I have had a variety of positions, Vice-president and President for two years. I was the President during the 50th Anniversary of the Symphony. I have also chaired a variety of committees and for the last three years, I have served as treasurer.
How has the RSO evolved during your time with the organization?
The board has taken on more ownership and responsibility for the Symphony. This is demonstrated by their commitment to fiduciary responsibility and fundraising. I believe the board has gone from good to great.
You’re serving your fourth year as treasurer. Under your leadership, what are you most proud of?
Through generous donors the RSO has developed an endowment and a reserve account that will ensure the longevity of the RSO. I am very proud of this. The finance committee carefully monitors expenditures and prepares a realistic budget that serves as a guide for what we do through the year. Last year we implemented two new software programs that will enable us to track our donors and monitor our income and expenses more efficiently. Conductor Guy Victor Bordo and Executive Director Monica Koechlein provide board direction, and strong board leadership.
What are some highlights that come to mind when you think of the RSO?
The growth of professionalism, outstanding quality of performances that Guy has produced, the growth in our endowment, and the fact that we even have an endowment, the expansion of our outreach to the community and adding additional children’s concerts.
Why is the RSO such an important part of the make up of this community and region? In addition to providing high quality arts programming for our region, having a debt free symphony adds to quality of life that encourages economic development. The RSO is another asset that we have to share with those looking for a place to grow their business or relocated their families. Richmond is very proud that a community of our size has a “sound” thriving symphony orchestra.
What did it mean to receive the Ginger Gray President’s Award this year? I am deeply honored to be the second recipient. What’s so very humbling is that everyone else has worked so hard with their gifts, vision and oversight—I have just presented the information to the board. We have seen tremendous growth in support from our community.