Dorthaan Kirk is one of the co-founders of WBGO-FM 88.3, with thirty-nine years of experience in project management related to institutional development, public relations, music publishing, and artists’ management and development. As WBGO’s Director of Community Relations and Special Events, her duties range from producing to promoting concerts in venues throughout New York and New Jersey. Dorthaan schedules on-air guests, manages ticket giveaways and ad promotions at Jazz venues. She also curates WBGO’s Art Gallery, WBGO’s Kids Jazz Concert Series, and WBGO’s Gateway Concert series throughout the year.
Dorthaan handles the booking of artists to be exhibited at the galleries, Concert series, and securing venues for the WBGO Children concert series, and the acquiring of complementary gifts for the children in attendance. In January 2016, The New York Times named Dorthaan Kirk, “Newark’s First Lady of Jazz,” after becoming the widow of the late Saxophonist Rashaan Roland Kirk, and an ambassador of Jazz Music.
Outside of WBGO, Dorthaan curates and hosts a unique series of jazz brunches at New Jersey Performing Arts Center which they named the brunch, “Dorthaan’s Place”. In her spare time, she is very active in her church, Bethany Baptist Church in Newark. There she serves on the lecture committee that presents various programs of interest to the Community, and is also president of the Jazz Vespers Committee. She is still considered “Nana”, by her grandchildren, who love when she cooks weekends dinners for the entire family.