SISTER BAY, WI (May 9, 2016) – Midsummer’s Music Festival’s Board of Directors named Russ Warren Executive Director following the recent retirement announcement of Mark Kunstman.
Russ was hired as Midsummer’s Marketing Director in 2015 for the organization’s historic 25th anniversary season. With enthusiastic support of the organization’s Marketing Committee, he was instrumental in attracting record high attendance for the year. Russ stated, “When I was hired, I was just excited to be a part of the Midsummer’s Music team. Today, I’m honored to be selected by the Board as Midsummer’s Executive Director. I’m extremely appreciative of Mark’s guidance and camaraderie over the past year and the way we worked together successfully as a team during the busiest concert season that Midsummer’s had ever produced. I look forward to continuing Mark’s high standards.”
Midsummer’s co-founder and Artistic Director Jim Berkenstock said, "We are extremely pleased and feel very fortunate that Russ agreed to accept the Executive Director position. Russ has proven to be a very valuable addition to our team since he came on board a little over year ago as Marketing Director. I and all of my colleagues on the Board look forward to working with him with a keen sense of excitement as we enter our second half century providing world-class music in Door County."
Mark began work with Midsummer’s as a part-time roadie in 2010, helping to haul equipment, chairs and signage, and to set up concert venues. Over time, Mark became more involved with the day-to-day operations of the organization and, in 2013, was offered the Executive Director position. Under his tenure, the number of in-season concerts has grown, and Midsummer’s has actively collaborated with other arts organizations in Door County. In 2015, Mark was elected President of the Peninsula Arts & Humanities Alliance.
Mark said, “I’ve been blessed to be a part of this incredible organization, to meet so many wonderful people including musicians and supporters, and to enjoy some of the finest music performances in Door County. It’s been a joy to work with a Board of Directors that is as engaged and dedicated as Midsummer’s.”
"Midsummer's Music is deeply indebted to Mark for his extraordinary devotion to Midsummer's Music during his time with us. He joined us at a critical moment and has provided strong and effective leadership including a stellar celebration of our 25th season last year. We wish him and his wife, Kathy, a very enjoyable retirement," stated Berkenstock.
Midsummer’s 2016 season begins June 17 with the Opening Night Gala at Birch Creek, as the first of 34 ensemble concerts through September 5. The complete season schedule is available at MidsummersMusic.com or by requesting a brochure at 920.854.7088.