LEAD — Advancing the mission of the Homestake Opera House through community collaboration, building membership, and targeted fundraising is something Jan Bloom is very excited about.
Bloom, who has lived in Spearfish since 2012, will start her new position today as the development irector at the Homestake Opera House.
As the former kindergarten librarian for Mountain View Elementary School, Bloom said she first became interested in the Homestake Opera House last year, when COVID-19 shut the schools down and she began looking for ways to get out of the house. Bloom found a perfect job, giving summer tours for the Sanford Lab Homestake Visitor’s Center. During those tours, the history, mission and story of the Homestake Opera House was always one of her favorite topics to discuss among the tourists.
“I told the story of Phoebe Hearst and how she wanted the opera house to serve as a community center,” Bloom said. “I am naturally attracted to the performing arts and I always have been. I really love the history of the all the Black Hills and I love sharing the history. I love telling people about this unique place and the history, it’s connection to the Homestake Mine and why it’s important. I own a home in Deadwood too, so I love Deadwood. But I really like to illustrate the differences between Deadwood and Lead. Even though they are sister cities, there was such a vast difference in the livelihood of people who lived in those places.”
Bloom brings a wealth of experience in grant writing, and building community partnerships. Before moving to Spearfish in 2012, she worked in health and human services, writing federal grants and reporting. She has also worked with Wyoming Public Radio, where she did program and community development to advance their mission.
“I’m excited to get back into that arena,” she said. “I’ve done a lot of grant writing. I’m on a couple of boards in Spearfish and I do a lot of fundraising and development activities. I am really anxious to get back into it as a profession.
As the development director, Bloom will be responsible for increasing memberships at the Homestake Opera House and building community partnerships. A large part of her job will also be writing grants for the operation and restoration of the opera house.
“I’m a strong believer in collaboration in the community, so I’m hoping to collaborate not just with other nonprofits, but also with businesses so we can work with helping them also,” she said.
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