MIDDLEBURY, VT—The Vermont Folklife Board and Staff are thrilled to announce the appointment of Ian Drury as full-time Director of Young Tradition Vermont at Vermont Folklife. Drury will succeed Mark Sustic, founder and long-time director of Young Tradition Vermont (YTV), formerly a stand-alone nonprofit that joined forces with Vermont Folklife in July, 2022. “I’m excited to have YTV continue at Vermont Folklife with Ian taking the baton,” said Sustic. “I've known Ian and his family for decades as friends, educators and traditional arts practitioners. It's an honor to know that YTV can continue as a Vermont Folklife Program with someone I know and deeply respect as Director.”
The Young Tradition Vermont Director at Vermont Folklife is responsible for managing YTV’s many programs, including the Young Tradition Festival, May 4-7 2023; the weeklong Trad Camp, July 2023; Fiddleheads; Touring Group; the Instrument Petting Zoo and Instrument Loan Program, and the Youth Commission, among others. Drury will continue to integrate YTV’s operations with those of Vermont Folklife to ensure its programs thrive with increased administrative support, and enhancing Vermont Folklife’s reach among young Vermonters. Working closely with Vermont Folklife’s Executive Director and staff, Drury will develop a vision for the future of YTV programs at Vermont Folklife that continues to ensure young people have opportunities to be inspired by, learn, share and serve through traditional music and dance.
“I couldn’t be more excited about Ian joining Vermont Folklife. His passion and enthusiasm for engaging youth in traditional music and dance is palpable and joyfully contagious,” said VT Folklife Executive Director, Kate Haughey. “Ian brings a unique set of experiences and skills to VT Folklife’s staff and we are happy to welcome him and get to work building on YTV Founder Mark Sustic’s incredible suite of YTV programs.”
Drury comes to Vermont Folklife from Saxon Hill School, where he has served as Director of Education since 2018. He has worked in early childhood education for 20 years and holds a degree in that field and communication science. Drury brings expertise in Developmentally Appropriate Practice, the Reggio Emilia Approach and Anti-Bias Curriculum to Vermont Folklife. He believes strongly in the value of music in all learning environments as a tool for building connections between people and communities, and bringing the joy of musical exploration and discovery to all ages.
Drury has a life-long connection to traditional music and dance, having been raised in Vermont by parents steeped in Franco-American, Irish, and other traditional music and dance communities. He is passionate about making Vermont’s traditional music and dance accessible to individuals and our greater community to ensure every family is valued, seen, and supported.
"It is a great honor to have been selected for this position. This is a role I feel born to,” said Drury. “I look forward to working with Vermont Folklife and people all around the state and beyond to sustain and promote Vermont's traditional music and dance. This is, in a beautiful way, an opportunity to continue the work of my departed mother, Martha Pellerin, and Mark Sustic in passing on traditional music and dance to our state's youth. What a joy!"
Drury lives in Essex Junction, Vermont with his wife Aricha and their four kids. He loves his work, hiking, paddle boarding, playing the accordion, banjo, drums, guitar, and mandolin, his dog, and spending time together as a family.
Founded in 1984, Vermont Folklife helps deepen our understanding of each other by engaging with communities across the state to document and share everyday expressions of tradition, innovation, and culture.