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Leaders of Van Go to step down at the end of the year

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Eliza Darmon and Kristen Malloy, co-executive directors of Van Go, are leaving their positions at the end of the year.

The move was announced Friday in an email to donors to the nonprofit arts-based employment program that serves Douglas County young people.

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“Given their dedication to Van Go for well over a decade, neither of them came to their decisions lightly, and will now support Van Go as members of our broader Van Go family,” the email states. “Their parting gift is a fortified foundation, a healthy financial picture, and a talented staff dedicated to inspiring young lives through art, work, and community. For this, and all of their investments, we are deeply grateful.”

Katie Winter, the incoming board president, will serve as interim director.

“Together, with Eliza and Kristen in contract roles, an incredible Van Go Staff and dedicated Board, we will guide the agency through this transition,” according to the email. “This collaborative leadership approach to navigating change will serve as a powerful model for the youth we serve.”

Molly Adams / Lawrence Times Van Go Co-Executive Directors Eliza Darmon, at left, and Kristen Malloy speak during the 2023 Benchmark ceremony.

Darmon and Malloy have served as co-executive directors since January 2021. Darmon previously served for 12 years as Van Go’s development director; Malloy was director of programs for 10 years, according to their respective LinkedIn pages.

The organization seeks a new leader “to model the virtues of balance, joy, and responsibility in order to pass them to the next generation,” according to the email. The ideal candidate “knows that creativity does not just apply to artwork; is committed to empowering a community and not directing it;” and “believes in constant regeneration and the ability to create things anew.”

Van Go celebrated its 25th anniversary last year. Learn more about the organization on its website, van-go.org.

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