By Morgan Lampman
Kevin Warner, professor of dance studies in Appalachian State University’s Department of Theatre and Dance, has been selected as the new Sharpe Chair, a position that works with the Hiddenite Arts & Heritage Center to provide accessible and quality art and cultural heritage programming to the Alexander County community.
The six-semester appointment includes a seventh semester to work with the new chair and is funded by an endowment established by Hiddenite Arts & Heritage Center founders R.Y. and Eileen Lackey Sharpe. Warner will be responsible for working with the Center’s staff and board to develop arts and other community programming at the Hiddenite Center.
Warner succeeds Jody Servon, Department of Art professor who served as Sharpe Chair from 2015-2021. Other previous Sharpe Chairs include: Teresa Lee (Department of Theatre and Dance); Ed Pilkington (Department of Theatre and Dance); Eric Reichard (Department of Sustainable Technology); Max Smith (Hayes School of Music); and Scott Meister (Hayes School of Music).
“I am excited to collaboratively work with the center’s staff, board, representatives from Alexander County Schools and other community members to pick up where Jody’s outstanding work leaves off,” Warner said about his new role. “I am confident in my ability to hit the ground running, and it will be a privilege to serve Appalachian State University and Hiddenite Arts and Heritage Center in this role.”
Warner earned his M.F.A. in Dance from Temple University and a B.A. in Print Journalism and Dance from The Pennsylvania State University. He completed post-graduate work in Early Childhood, Elementary and Music Education. Warner’s work in the world of the arts is extensive--he is a member of the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction’s “Arts Education Think Tank", a former panel member for the North Carolina Arts Council artist-in-residence grants panel, and he has presented at the National Association of Schools of Dance and National Dance Education Organization annual conferences.
Prior to coming to App State, Warner worked at the State University of New York College at Brockport where he served as the chair of the Department of Dance from 2013-2015, and as director of the Interdisciplinary Arts for Children Program from 2008-2013. During his time in New York, Warner was the advocacy chair of the New York State Dance Education Association, and a co-director of the Hunter Institute on Young Children.
Warner served as the project coordinator for the Appalachian Arts in Education Partnership, a federally funded consortium of Appalachian State University, local schools and area arts councils in northwestern North Carolina, and from 1998-2004 he served as a national consultant for the Modern Red Schoolhouse Institute, during which he implemented a Comprehensive School Reform Design (CSRD) for teachers in economically disadvantaged schools.
Warner’s service at App State includes serving on the Chancellor’s Accountability Team for Diversity and Inclusion and the Title IX Hearing committee. He served as chairperson for the Department of Theatre and Dance from 2015-2019.
Department of Theatre and Dance
The Department of Theatre and Dance is one of seven departments housed in Appalachian’s College of Fine and Applied Arts. Its mission is to facilitate transformative experiences for students and the public, which cultivate compassionate, creative and collaborative communities through theatre and dance. The department also offers coursework for integrated learning through the arts to the general university student population. Its dynamic co-curricular production program provides exemplary theatre and dance experiences to departmental students, the university community and the region. Learn more athttps://theatreanddance.appstate.edu.
College of Fine and Applied Arts
Appalachian State University’s College of Fine and Applied Arts is a dynamic and innovative group of seven academic departments, bringing together a variety of perspectives, experiences and real-world education to provide unique opportunities for student success. The college has more than 3,000 undergraduate and graduate majors. Its departments are Applied Design, Art, Communication, Military Science and Leadership, Sustainable Development, Sustainable Technology and the Built Environment, and Theatre and Dance. Learn more at https://faa.appstate.edu.