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Governor Kasich Reappoints Darryl Mehaffie, Dr. Farid Naffah, and Neal Zimmers to OAC Board

On July 6, Governor John R. Kasich reappointed Darryl Mehaffie of Greenville, Dr. Farid Naffah of Cortland, and Neal Zimmers of Granville to the Ohio Arts Council (OAC) board for terms ending July 1, 2023.

“For the last several years, Darryl, Farid, and Neal have all worked to strengthen investment and innovation in the arts while serving on the Ohio Arts Council,” said OAC Executive Director Donna S. Collins. “I am delighted that their efforts will continue well into the future.”

Mr. Mehaffie is a retired school teacher who taught fifth and sixth grades at Northmont City Schools in Englewood, Ohio, from 1966-1996. Gov. Kasich first appointed him to the OAC board in 2013 and later named him an Ohio Commodore in 2016. Mr. Mehaffie currently serves on the Edison State Community College Board of Trustees, and he also sits on the board of the Darke County Center for the Arts and served as its past chairman. In addition, Mr. Mehaffie continues to serve the Greenville community as a trustee of the Garst Museum and the Darke County Historical Society. He has previously served on the State Board of Education as an appointed member-at-large and as chairman of the Ohio Association of Community Colleges from 2009-2011.

Dr. Naffah is a gastroenterologist in private practice at Avamar Gastroenterology, Inc., in Warren. Born in Beirut, Lebanon, he graduated from Columbia University as a Phi Beta Kappa member and remained in New York City to earn his M.D. from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He then completed a residency at the Mayo Clinic and a fellowship at Johns Hopkins Hospital. While at Johns Hopkins, he earned a master’s degree with honors in computer science from the university’s School of Engineering. Dr. Naffah joined the staff of the Cleveland Clinic in 1988 before entering private practice. He has published several articles and book chapters, lectured in the United States and abroad, and appeared in The Best Doctors in America, in addition to his contributions as a local arts philanthropist.

Mr. Zimmers is a practicing attorney. He graduated from Denison University and The George Washington University Law School. He previously served 18 years on the OAC board, as a legislative appointee for eight years from 1983 to1991; appointed by Gov. Taft for a term from 2004 to 2009; and appointed again by Gov. Kasich in 2013. A former two-term Montgomery County court judge, he also served 20 years as a state senator representing Greater Dayton and the Miami Valley, serving a term as President pro tempore. After retiring from public office in 1994, Mr. Zimmers was Ohio Vice-President of CSX Railroad for 10 years. A strong supporter of the arts and an advocate of their value to society, he currently serves as a member of the Granville Arts Commission and as a director of the Eichelberger Foundation in Dayton, which has provided more than $1 million to Dayton-area arts and cultural organizations in recent years. He is also currently vice-chair of the Granville Board of Building and Zoning Appeals.

The Ohio Arts Council is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. Connect with the OAC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, or visit our website at


Article by Justin Nigro, Operations & Public Affairs Director

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