Dr. Norman L. Fagan

Norman L. Fagan was the first commissioner of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History and had a profound impact on the cultivation of the state’s traditional arts and culture. An early advocate of recording, documenting, preserving and presenting the folkways of West Virginians, he is credited with founding the Vandalia Gathering in 1977 and ensuring the festival’s growth through its first years. As commissioner, Fagan also was instrumental in the effort to build the Cultural Center in the State Capitol Complex as a nationally acclaimed showcase for West Virginia performers, artists and craftspeople. Photograph by Michael Keller.


Brooks Smith