Orange County School of the Arts (OCSA) Founder and Executive Director Ralph Opacic Announces Retirement | News


SANTA ANA, Calif., April 1, 2021 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — After greater than three a long time shaping the panorama of arts schooling in Southern California and throughout the nation, Orange County Faculty of the Arts (OCSA) Founder Ralph S. Opacic, Ed.D, introduced his retirement from his full-time place as the college’s government director, efficient on the conclusion of this college yr. OCSA’s Board of Trustees voted unanimously yesterday night to nominate Teren Shaffer, the OCSA Basis’s government vice chairman, as the college’s second president & CEO starting July 1.

About Ralph Opacic

Opacic leaves a powerful 34-year legacy, which started as a younger man’s dream. His love of performing propelled him to California in pursuit of an expert music profession. Nevertheless, he quickly found that his actual ardour was to encourage the following technology of younger artists by arts schooling. Armed with a bachelor’s diploma in music, he grew to become the choir director at Los Alamitos Excessive Faculty, the place he reworked a choir program with 30 college students right into a thriving program of 300 college students. In 1987, Opacic secured a state grant to help his imaginative and prescient of making a world-class arts college taught by skilled working artists that gives a pathway to varsity and a profession within the arts. OCSA began as an after-school program with simply 4 conservatories. Shortly outgrowing the placement in Los Alamitos, Opacic started the seek for a brand new dwelling. Mayor Miguel Pulido invited Opacic to relocate OCSA to Santa Ana. Recognizing a singular alternative to develop the college and be part of the revitalization of midtown Santa Ana, Opacic crafted a marketing strategy that, with the help of the group, resulted in OCSA opening its doorways in 2000 as a stand-alone constitution college.

Beneath Opacic’s management, OCSA is acknowledged as one of many premier arts faculties within the nation, providing a rigorous college-preparatory tutorial program and pre-professional arts coaching in 16 conservatories. OCSA now serves a scholar physique of almost 2,300 college students from over 100 cities all through Southern California. The 350,000 sq. foot city campus is unfold throughout 10 industrial and historic buildings. OCSA graduates are recruited by the nation’s prime universities. One of many cornerstones of Opacic’s plans for OCSA was additionally to offer a wealthy outreach program which provided accessible artwork actions and lessons to the area people. Opacic’s management has enabled OCSA to lift greater than $100 million over the previous 34 years, as an funding within the hopes and goals of the college’s passionate and proficient college students. Persevering with his imaginative and prescient to share OCSA’s profitable and revolutionary curriculum fashions with different communities in Southern California, California Faculty of the Arts ― San Gabriel Valley (CSArts-SGV), the primary regional campus, opened in 2017 to serve almost 1,200 college students. Along with his extraordinary work with OCSA and CSArts-SGV, he has introduced his deep expertise and strategic considering to arts faculties throughout the nation by his nationwide management positions with Arts Faculties Community and his nonprofit consulting companies. All through his illustrious profession, the creativity, ardour, tenacity and imaginative and prescient of Opacic has impacted the lives of tens of hundreds of scholars with the pioneering teaching programs and dynamic studying surroundings he designed and carried out.

“A visionary chief and dreamer, Dr. Opacic has constantly introduced OCSA to new heights, devoting his profession to creating alternatives for college kids,” stated Gary Humphreys, Chair of the OCSA Board of Trustees. “Over the previous three a long time, he has expanded OCSA’s tutorial house tenfold, developed 16 arts conservatory applications, created a scholar sponsorship program that permits all college students to obtain the identical expertise no matter their household’s monetary capability, and a lot extra. The Board of Trustees, in addition to OCSA school, employees, and directors are grateful for his legacy and promise to uphold the college’s dedication to excellence for a few years to return.”

“Main this group has actually been the best honor and privilege of my skilled profession,” Opacic stated. “Because of my extraordinary colleagues and so many beneficiant group supporters who stood beside me through the years, OCSA has made numerous goals come true, mine included. I’m assured that our mission will thrive as I hand the torch to Mr. Teren Shaffer. His ardour for and dedication to our faculty is immeasurable, and I can consider nobody higher suited to step into this function.”

About Teren Shaffer

The college’s mission shall be carried on by Teren Shaffer, who has been working alongside Opacic for the previous 4 years as government vice chairman of the OCSA Basis and CSArts Basis. Shaffer started his tenure at OCSA in 2011 as music director and conductor of the acclaimed Frederick Fennell Wind Ensemble. He was shortly acknowledged for his management, being promoted to director of the Instrumental Music Conservatory after which to dean of arts. In his present place as government vice chairman, he performs a key function in strategic planning for the group and has expanded academic alternatives for college kids, together with the celebrated Grasp Artist Collection, the Creators & Innovators Collection, a two-day faculty honest, and extra, along with main the event, public relations, advertising, graphic design, and particular occasions departments at OCSA and the sister campus, CSArts-SGV.

Shaffer is a extremely lauded arts supervisor, music educator and conductor, profitable many prestigious awards together with The Kennedy Heart’s Stephen Sondheim Inspirational Instructor Award, the Arts Faculties Community Dr. Denise Davis-Cotton Rising Chief Award, Stanford College’s Distinctive Educating Award and Orange County Division of Training’s Excellent Arts Educator Award. He led the Frederick Fennell Wind Ensemble to change into a finalist in The American Prize for Wind Ensemble Efficiency and to current a live performance on the Music for All Nationwide Live performance Band Competition. In 2014, the ensemble was the primary highschool band from Southern California to carry out on the Midwest Clinic. That is the most important annual music convention of its variety, internet hosting almost 20,000 educators and performers from greater than 30 international locations.

Shaffer serves as vice chairman on the nationwide board of administrators for Arts Faculties Community and hosted the nationwide convention at OCSA in 2018. Beforehand, he was on school at Chapman College and likewise served as basic supervisor for the Orange County Youth Symphony. Shaffer earned a grasp’s diploma in orchestral conducting from the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music and bachelor’s levels in instrumental conducting, music efficiency and music schooling from Chapman College.

“I’ve identified Mr. Shaffer for a number of years whereas my two daughters attended OCSA,” stated Chair of the Basis Board of Administrators Vince Foley. “Mr. Shaffer is extremely nicely ready to steer OCSA into its subsequent chapter. He’s a artistic, devoted and passionate educator and administrator who has an array of expertise that makes him exceptionally certified to additional develop and implement the college’s mission.”

“As a musician, the mission of OCSA is near my coronary heart,” stated Shaffer. “From my first day as a trainer, I used to be captivated by the dedication and keenness of OCSA’s college students, and impressed by the creativity and innovation of our school and employees. OCSA actually gives a essentially totally different academic expertise for college kids. I’m extremely grateful to Dr. Opacic for his visionary management and for being a pivotal mentor in my life. I’ve realized a lot from him throughout my 10 years at OCSA, and I look ahead to his continued help as a strategic advisor following his retirement. As we transfer ahead into OCSA’s thirty fifth anniversary, I’m honored and thrilled to steer our distinguished college into the long run as president & CEO.”

About Orange County Faculty of the Arts

Established in 1987, the nationally acknowledged Orange County Faculty of the Arts (OCSA) gives an unparalleled arts and tutorial schooling in a artistic, difficult and nurturing surroundings to a various scholar physique passionate concerning the arts, making ready them to achieve their highest potential. As a tuition-free, donation-dependent public constitution college, OCSA serves greater than 2,200 college students in grades seven by 12, offering college-preparatory lecturers and pre-professional arts coaching by 16 totally different conservatory applications.

OCSA has been acknowledged because the No. 1 Constitution Excessive Faculty in California by Area of interest. The U.S. Division of Training and Nationwide Endowment for the Arts have acknowledged OCSA as a mannequin arts schooling program. OCSA has acquired the excellence of “Distinctive Constitution Faculty in Particular Training” by the Nationwide Affiliation of Particular Training Academics (NASET) for 2017, 2018 and 2019. OCSA’s counseling program is the primary Seventh-Twelfth grade program in California to be named as a nationally Acknowledged American Faculty Counselor Affiliation Mannequin Program (RAMP).

OCSA has been named as one in all California’s Gold Ribbon Faculties for 2017 and is an Arts Faculties Community 2017-2022 Exemplary Faculty. OCSA is constantly named one in all America’s Greatest Excessive Faculties by U.S. Information & World Report and is accredited by the Western Affiliation of Faculties and Faculties (WASC). For added info, go to

Media Contact

Julia Gutierrez, Orange County Faculty of the Arts, +1 (714) 560-0900 Ext: 3246,



SOURCE Orange County Faculty of the Arts


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