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Artistic Encounters: Meet The Artist

Artistic Encounters -Meet the Artist essentially takes the artist from behind the camera and welcomes them into the Blue Ridge PBS studio.  This provides our arts loving audience the opportunity to meet the featured artist while they introduce their works one on one. Specially curated pieces from their collection will be on display during the reception and for several weeks afterwards with many available to take home by making a donation to Blue Ridge PBS. Additionally, each artist will donate one piece to Blue Ridge PBS which will then be auctioned the night of the artist’s reception. Proceeds benefit the artist and Blue Ridge PBS so it may continue its mission of enriching people’s lives by providing educational, informational, and cultural programming that fills a unique role as a positive and lifelong resource for the communities we serve.


Rich Davis and one of his photos

Rich Davis: Retired Naval Aviator, Captain Rich Davis bought his first DSLR about 12 years ago. After fumbling about for a year shooting on automatic, a couple of professional photographer friends taught him how to shoot in manual mode. He then fell in love with the craft and dabbled with infrared for about 6 years or so when a friend gave him an old, converted camera. He’s been doing more infrared photography since a few years before he retired, but it is now the main focus (pun intended) of his photography.

Davis began his naval career with his birth at Portsmouth Naval Hospital, Portsmouth, Virginia. He is a second- generation Naval Aviator. As a child, Davis attended elementary and high school in Virginia ultimately graduating from Naples American High School in Naples Italy. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Finance from Virginia Tech and a Master of Science degree in National Resource Strategy from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces, National Defense University. He was commissioned through Naval Reserve Officer Training in May 1990 after serving in various roles in the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets at Virginia Tech which is one of six Senior Military Colleges in the United States. He was designated an Unrestricted Naval Aviator in April 1992. He is also a qualified joint specialty officer.

Davis spent nearly half of his 28-year naval career living in Virginia including the Hampton Roads area and Alexandria, Virginia.

Ashore, Davis served as a flight instructor with Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light Four Zero and as a plank owner in the Weapon Tactics Unit/Wing Weapons School where he served as Weapons Officer and Special Projects Officer. He served as an Afghanistan action officer, South- east Asia action officer and executive assistant on the Joint Staff, Strategic Plans and Policy Directorate (J-5) prior to taking command of the World Famous Swamp Foxes of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 44. Davis next served as Anti-Submarine Warfare and Aviation Section Head in the Surface Warfare Directorate on the Navy Staff and Airborne Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance Section Head on the Secretary of Defense Staff. His final tour on active duty was as the Chief of Naval Operations Chair, The Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Resource Strategy, National Defense University. Captain Davis led an industry study on Robotics and Autonomous Systems while on staff at the Eisenhower School.

His personal decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal with gold star, the Air Medal, four Navy Commendation Medals, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, and various unit and campaign awards. He has accumulated more than 2,900 hours in Navy aircraft.


Thursday, February 22 from 4 –  7 pm


Weekdays, February 26 – March 15 from 1 – 4 pm

The reception/exhibit are completely free of charge and are held at Blue Ridge PBS: 1215 McNeil Drive, Roanoke, VA 24015. 

In order for the series to continue we need funding and artists! Please reach out to

Artistic Encounters - Visionaries 

Recognizing and supporting Blue Ridge PBS’ artist series, Meet the Artist 

  • Brenda Barksdale
  • Anne and Curt Steele
  • Ann Martyn 


Support this series  -Pledge Now!