Hi, I’m Jay Ruby. I work as a cultural navigator and creative networker who is passionate about community service. I am a son of the American Revolution – with deep roots in Pennsylvania. I came to Arizona three decades ago as a Rust Belt refugee with Appalachian values: invest in the community, help others, question the status quo. My Republican grandfathers taught me two guiding principles about protecting our liberty: create dialogue and question authority.
My favorite founding father said, “It is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority.” I admired Benjamin Franklin for that quote and for advocating to abolish slavery in our original constitution.
I graduated from Antioch College where I took very seriously the school’s motto. “Be ashamed to die until you have won a victory for humanity”.
Winning victories for humanity and questioning authority are the values that underpin my work in the arts, where I believe it is necessary to be realistic and ask for the impossible. My performance work inspires productive discussions and creates experiences and forums to engage, build, and sustain community.
I have developed and overseen multi-year, international projects with cross-cultural ensembles numbering 20 plus persons. I have secured national grant funding, produced multiple events simultaneously while touring, and managed human resources with sensitivity while interfacing with diverse communities. My theater company thrives when there is open communication between the cast, crew, audiences, local businesses and officials. As Executive Director, I research, start conversations, and facilitate consensus, hearing the cries of we the people and creating a coordinated response.
Our legislature and the people it represents function much like an ensemble theater. I am running for State Representative in Legislative District 1 to renew the art of dialogue in the Arizona State House to improve the quality of life for all of us. I look forward to sharing this journey with you.