Segerstrom Center president leaves after 12 years

In a sudden development, Terrence Dwyer is out as president of the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa after 12 years on the job.

His departure was revealed Friday evening in a news release that shed little light on the circumstances of Dwyer’s exit, though it said he announced he “will pursue other opportunities.”

The center’s board of directors “thanks him for his many years of service,” the statement added.

“The center is sincerely grateful for his many accomplishments during his tenure,” the release stated, citing the opening of the School of Dance and Music for Children with Disabilities, the Center for Dance and Innovation and the Julianne and George Argyros Plaza.

“Dwyer expressed his gratitude for the time he has spent with the center, said he has been honored to have served the center and wishes the center every future success,” according to the statement.

Dwyer and a Segerstrom Center spokesman could not be reached for additional comment Monday.

Executive Vice President Judy Morr and Chief Financial Officer Brian Finck will lead operations while the center searches for a replacement for Dwyer, according to the center.

Meanwhile, Jennifer Turner, the Segerstrom Center’s executive vice president and managing director, has been named the next president and chief executive of the Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville, according to a report last week by the Nashville Tennessean. She will start there in May.

“I’m extremely excited about the diversity of programming that TPAC offers, both on the stage and working throughout its community,” Turner said in that report.

The Segerstrom Center is home to some of Orange County’s best-known cultural and performance spaces, including the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall, Samueli Theater and Judy Morr Theater.

Last month, the Costa Mesa Planning Commission approved a master plan to build the new location of the Orange County Museum of Art on the Segerstrom campus, as well.

However, Dwyer — in his capacity as Segerstrom Center president — appealed that decision to the City Council, citing concerns about site access, parking, outdoor activity space and building design and use and whether the museum would be sufficiently integrated with existing facilities.

The appeal is still pending, according to the city.


This article was originally published at 4:35 p.m. It was later updated with additional information.