The International Storytelling Center has hired Kiran Singh Sirah, a prominent folklorist, as its new executive director.
Sirah's appointment concludes the national search that began last December when Jimmy Neil Smith, ISC founder, president emeritus, and founder of the National Storytelling Festival, retired from the organization.
Sirah is a proven advocate for the arts who has spoken about the power of story at the United Nations Headquarters, where he delivered the keynote address at Rotary International UN Day in 2012. A Rotary World Peace Fellow, he comes to Jonesborough from Chapel Hill, N.C., where he earned a master's degree in folklore at the University of North Carolina.
The new leader has long been involved in arts programming, community service and human rights in his former home in Glasgow, Scotland, where he spent more than 10 years in museum and charity management. A native of the United Kingdom, he brings international perspective to the ISC, an organization that's dedicated to improving the lives of people around the world through the power of storytelling.