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For nearly a decade, Darryl Rodriquez was the unseen force behind the sights and sounds of the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute at Quartz Mountain. He proudly served as the Institute’s Production Manager, meeting the considerable site and stage needs of this distinguished multidisciplinary arts academy for high school students, before losing his life in a tragic accident while travelling to Quartz Mountain in the summer of 2011.
Those lucky enough to have known Darryl remember someone focused more on people than praise. “Whether he was directing, teaching, being a friend, or father, he wanted to see those he cared about succeed,” says longtime friend and colleague Rob Ward, “and he wanted to be a part of that success without the recognition.”
In honor of his lasting impact on the lives of others, Darryl’s friends are establishing the Darryl C. Rodriquez Endowed Scholarship Fund at the Oklahoma Arts Institute Foundation. The Grandfield, Oklahoma native had a special heart for the young artists at OSAI, and the scholarship fund bearing his name will help ensure that generations of students will be able to attend the program at no cost to them or their families.
This scholarship will give special consideration to students with limited financial resources, especially those from rural areas.
“Darryl loved the Oklahoma Arts Institute, I think in part because of its focus on kids like him,” Ward remembers. “He came from modest means, from a very small Oklahoma town, and went on to be an artist in every sense of the word. He achieved a great deal as an actor, scenic designer and director, and—like so many others—Darryl found his spark during the summers at OSAI. Though he never attended as a student, he really identified with those kids who come to Quartz Mountain wide-eyed and leave with a purpose.”
After so many years staging “Quartz Mountain magic” from behind the scenes, Darryl will remain an indispensible part of this one-of-a-kind program. The Darryl C. Rodriquez Endowed Scholarship Fund guarantees that the spark he found at the Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute will continue to ignite new generations of gifted young artists.
Donations to the Darryl C. Rodriquez Endowed Scholarship Fund may be made online or by contacting Director of Development, Shana Gibelyou, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 405-605-7500, ext. 303.