Photo by Martin Boling

UPDATE: The members of the Waldron Task Force have been named. They are as follows:

  • Jenn Christy, musician and president/owner, One Pulse Entertainment
  • Trent Deckard, Monroe County Council Member 
  • John Fernandez, former Mayor, City of Bloomington 
  • Bryony Gomez-Palacio, Bloomington Arts Commission, chair, and principal, UnderConsideration design and marketing firm
  • Heidi Harmon, financial consultant, Charles Schwab Bloomington
  • Gloria Howell, Director, Indiana University, Neal-Marshall Black Culture Center
  • Cindy Kinnarney, Regional President, German American Bank
  • Mary Krupinski, architect and president/owner of Kirkwood Design Studio
  • Meg Lagodzki, visual artist and owner, Meg Lagodzki Fine Art
  • Martha Moore, founder/owner, FAR Center for Contemporary Art
  • Laura Newton, Assistant Director/COO, Visit Bloomington
  • A. John Rose, founder/owner, Textillery Weavers
  • Susan Sandberg, Bloomington Common Council Member-at-Large
  • Jo Throckmorton, owner, Blue Ace Media/Jo Throckmorton Filmworks
  • Travis Vencel, Director of Development, TWG real estate development company
  • Ron Walker, Vice President, Operations, CFC Properties
  • John West, commercial broker/owner, FC Tucker Realty

In December, the task force will meet to discuss the immediate, short-term uses for the building.

Mayor John Hamilton has appointed Miah Michaelsen and Valerie Peña as co-chairs of the Waldron Recommendation Committee, which will advise the City of Bloomington on the future of the John Waldron Arts Center building, 122 S. Walnut.

Earlier this year, Ivy Tech Community College–Bloomington announced that it would be returning the Waldron building to the City in early 2021. The Waldron has been used as a community arts space since 1991, a legacy that continued when Ivy Tech acquired the building in 2010.

Michaelsen, deputy director of the Indiana Arts Commission, and Peña, assistant vice president and chief of staff for the Office of Government Relations & Economic Engagement at Indiana University, will work alongside additional committee members to explore future uses and ownership of the building.

A Capstone class of Indiana University graduate students, led by Professor Mark Levin, will do a feasibility study to assist the committee in its decision making. In addition, a coalition comprised of Cardinal Stage, the Bloomington Playwrights Project, and Pigasus Institute has submitted a proposal to manage the building going forward.

The City of Bloomington is still seeking committee members and invites interested people to nominate themselves or other residents for consideration. Contact Mary Catherine Carmichael, City of Bloomington director of public engagement, at [email protected] or 812-349-3406.

“I look forward to working with the committee as we re-envision the future of this downtown landmark,” said Mayor John Hamilton in a press release. “For over a century, the Waldron has played a key role at the city’s center, and as we welcome ideas and suggestions from all corners, I’m confident that we will find a way to ensure that it remains a source of vitality for our downtown.”