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Daniel Sheehy

DANIEL SHEEHY, Director and Curator, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, Washington DC

AFS member 1976-2014, Executive Board 2005-2008; PhD UCLA 1979, Ethnomusicology; Director & Curator, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings 2000-2014; Director, Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage 2008-2012; Acting Director, Smithsonian Latino Center 2007-2008; Director, NEA Folk & Traditional Arts 1992-2000, Assistant Director and specialist 1978-1992; Fulbright-Hays scholar, Mexico 1977-1978. Co-edited South America, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean (1998) volume of the Garland Encyclopedia of World Music, 1998; author, Mariachi Music in America: Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture, Oxford University Press, 2006; AFS Américo Paredes prize 2010; Benjamin A. Botkin Prize 1997; 3 Grammy awards, 4 nominations; Alliance for California Traditional Arts board 2003-2014 (President 2013-2014); National Council for the Traditional Arts board 2005-2014; Association for Cultural Equity board 2007-2014; Society for Ethnomusicology First Vice President 2005-2007. 

The AFS membership embodies the best of two worlds: a first-rate academic grounding, and decades of experience in opening doors to a more inclusive cultural sector. We must continue to strengthen and expand our position through broadening our own ranks with the voices and aspirations of a diverse membership. Cultural difference is at the core of our values, and reflecting this in our leadership strengthens our capacity to network and to ally ourselves with a host of cultural comrades. Our institutional diversity has moved far beyond the academic-public dyad. More folklorists in the academy reach beyond the confines of the campus in their accomplishments, and they train an updated generation of folklore professionals with a 360 vision for the value of folklore expertise.  Museums worldwide seek greater civic relevance and social engagement, and folklorists have fruitfully plied their expertise in service of this cause. Thanks to our own successful leadership, we have diversified the geographic arena of our membership and our domain of action, forging international alliances to advance thinking about critical issues worldwide in cultural heritage policy and practice. A future filled with promise awaits us, and critical to realizing our potential as a major asset to the public good is recruiting AFS leaders with a broad, assertive vision and next-level-up thinking. With more than 36 years of networking at the National Endowment for the Arts, the Smithsonian, and NCTA, ACTA, and ACE boards, I would be pleased to play my part in making this happen as a member of the Nominating Committee. 

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