Watershed Welcomes New Executive Director in June

David S. East

EDGECOMB – The Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts Board of Trustees is pleased to announce that David S. East will be joining the organization as its new Executive Director in June 2024. East comes to Watershed with over 20 years experience as a ceramic artist and educator, 15 of which, in a leadership role. East’s work includes an arts practice, education, curatorial work and writing as well as a long and varied involvement with Watershed. 

Currently, serving as the Faculty Advisor of Ceramics at the Maryland Institute College of Art, David S. East has taught and been a visiting artist at numerous locations including University of Missouri-Columbia, Alfred University, Kansas City Art Institute, and the Tainan National College of Art, Taiwan. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally including in the GICBiennale Incheon, Korea, solo exhibitions at the Jane Hartsook Gallery, Greenwich House Pottery, NY, NY, Schulman Project, Baltimore, MD and many others. He has received numerous awards including, Individual Artist Awards from the Maryland State Arts Council, the Lighton Foundation, and the McKnight Foundation.

On behalf of the Watershed Board of Trustees, Lynn Duryea, Watershed Founding Trustee expressed, “We are thrilled to have David S. East step into the role of Watershed’s Executive Director. David brings years of administrative and educational experience and a deep understanding of the field of ceramics. He has first-hand knowledge of Watershed, as past staff member, resident artist and an Advisor to the Watershed board. David is the ideal person to help guide our mission and programming as we embark on our next chapter with expanded facilities.”

David S. East is engaged in a thoughtful onboarding process in collaboration with Sadie Bliss, Watershed’s Interim Executive Director. The two dedicated and experienced leaders will work side-by-side for six weeks in Summer 2024 to ensure a smooth leadership transition. During 2024, Watershed leadership, staff and board look forward to an inspiring summer residency season, the annual Salad Days event also serving as a celebration of Watershed’s new Commons building, the fall residency partnership with the Color Network, many workshops and kiln firings. The campus transformation led by past Executive Director Fran Rudoff has paved the way for year-round programming, which Watershed is poised to bring to life; expanding and offering more time and more space to artists working in clay.

David has a long history with Watershed; he has attended three residencies, served as an advisor to the board 2014 – 2017, has worked in various service functions over the years and was the cook and co-residence manager in 1995. As he prepares to step into his next role of Executive Director, David shares, “Watershed is singular amongst ceramic arts and residencies centers. Its focus, on the potential of dialogue, on community, and on the singular impact of time and space and its role in expanding creativity is profound. I am humbled and so excited by the opportunity to serve Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts. Watershed has changed and enriched the lives of so many, including my own, and I am thrilled to carry this work forward.”

David will join Watershed as Director in June. He, with his wife Catherine, a textile designer and artist, and son, Ronan will make the move to Maine from New York City this summer.