Promoted Foundry officials prove their metal

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Leadership at the Walla Walla Foundry is changing shape as the business adjusts to major growth.

Dylan Farnum has been promoted to president, and Dave Anderson to chief financial officer, according to an announcement Tuesday from Foundry owner Chief Executive Officer Mark Anderson.

The Foundry has grown more than 10-fold in sales in 1991 and expanded its services to become the broadest-ranging foundry in the country, he said.

“Because of the broader service offerings and the increase in complex projects it was imperative that we expand the company leadership,” Anderson said in a prepared statement. “With 110 employees and such tremendous growth, it made perfect sense to build a stronger executive leadership team to ensure we will continue to deliver the quality of service our customers expect.”

Farnum, a 1996 Columbia University graduate, was introduced to the Foundry as a client on a project for a New York artist in 1998. Once the project was completed, Anderson recruited him to stay on as a fine art fabricator. Within a couple of years he took charge of setting up the technical infrastructure to create digital enlargements of artwork, as well as managing complex large-scale projects, the announcement explained. In 2004, he branched into business development, project management and technical innovation for the Foundry. Since then a number of “next generation artists,” including Maya Lin, Kiki Smith, Matthew Day Jackson, Jeff Koons and Matthew Barney from New York, and Paul McCarthy and Thomas Houseago from California, have become clients.

Dave Anderson joined the Foundry after graduating from then-Walla Walla College in 1992 with a degree in business administration. He first worked as supervisor of accounting, when the Foundry had 20 employees. His responsibilities have steadily grown to include project estimates and scheduling, facilities management, material acquisition and logistics. He oversees daily operations as well as financial management responsibilities.

The more than 30-year-old Foundry, created by Mark and Patty Anderson, has grown to be the largest contemporary art foundry in the nation, specializing in resin, wood and bronze casting along with its computer numeric control and digital 3-D technologies.

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