Rural America COC Scholarship Opens Doors of Possibility in Cultural Breadbasket of US Music History
Today I've been awarded a scholarship to join the new Rural America Chamber of Commerce by founder and visionary Sherri Powell and her team! The significance is not lost on me that the news arrived on such a day of observance - International Women's Day! Sherri's "Open Doors" Scholarship Program is giving hope to aspiring rural entrepreneurs like me who have been traditionally challenged by invisibility and a lack of access to opportunity, hungry for a chance to mobilize their small business ideas and achieve financial security during a global pandemic and approaching post-pandemic world.
From the hometowns of Tina Turner (Nutbush, TN), Johnny Cash (Dyess, AR), the Everly Brothers (Shenandoah, IA) and Alan Freed (Salem, OH), to a countryside oasis where the King became a cowboy (Elvis Presley - Circle G Ranch, Horn Lake, MS) and an agricultural firmament of "The Three Stars" that continues to shine (Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, JP Richardson/Big Bopper - Surf Ballroom, Clear Lake, IA), my work has been heavily focused on helping rural communities tell the stories of their singular contributions to American popular music through the authentic sensory medium of architecture. With this new scholarship program, a door has opened for me to the possibility of achieving greater recognition for the cultural breadbasket of rural America that so richly nourished and cultivated much of our nation's musical legacy!