Since his retirement from Hasbro, Inc. in 2012, Terry Scott hasn't been able to sit still. The rustic wood Trestle table in the heart of his living room seems to be his creative zone. His laptop and notes are spread out and there’s rock & roll playing in the background. Randi, his wife of 40 years, is puttering in the veggie garden while his dogs Montana and Kito are by his feet.
The doors in their eastside home are open to let in the cool Benicia breeze—along with a constant stream of fresh ideas. Terry is always open to them. And at the end of every day he asks himself one important question: “Did I make a difference today?”
Terry now serves as the Chair of the Benicia Arts and Culture Commission, a volunteer commission charged with creating and promoting arts and culture in our creative town. He’s been a key player in demonstrating the economic impact of the arts, and for the past 18 months has been spearheading a growing public art movement. Thanks to Terry and the commission’s Public Art Committee, Benicians are seeing artist-rendered traffic light boxes popping up throughout the city, and in the months ahead we can anticipate many more artful benches, murals, picnic tables and whimsical surprises in our neighborhoods. “We wanted to take hidden gems, those objects you see every day that you don’t notice, and turn them into wow moments,” he said.
Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Terry is a creative soul with an entrepreneurial spirit. After graduating with degrees in art and journalism from Kent State, he got a job as a reporter for the Palm Beach Times, and soon started his own investigative magazine called South Florida Today. He sold it when he was just 25 years old, then moved back to Cleveland, met Randi on a blind date and launched his career in advertising. Within a decade Terry was running his own advertising and events agency. When it began to consume him, he knew it was time to walk away.
In 1996, Terry answered an ad for Cap Candy in Cleveland that would change his life. He became the Chief of Research and Development and within a month, Hasbro, Inc. purchased Cap Candy and several other businesses. Terry eventually became the Senior VP of Global Creative Services for Hasbro and was transferred to their headquarters in Napa.
It’s been six years since Terry retired from his global post and settled here in Benicia, eventually putting his heart and soul into the Benicia Arts and Culture Commission. Along with public art initiatives, the commissioners advocate for local performing and visual and literary arts organizations, along with the Benicia Film Festival—a major fundraiser for the commission.
“We talk about Benicia as a hidden gem, as an artist community, but the manifestation of our artist colony is not visible from the outside,” he said. The public art initiative is changing that. “Public art tells your brain to look for beauty, to see and enjoy your surroundings. It makes us more aware and brightens our lives. There is an emotional connection. Public art does that.”
For more information about the BACC, and call for artists see: beniciaartsandculture.org.