Art Center to be named after councilman

Sunday Times Newspapers

WYANDOTTE – The Wyandotte Art Center may soon get a new name, but longtime residents will recognize it.

Councilors passed a resolution Monday to name the Wyandotte Art Center after Councilman James DeSana.

In a letter to the council, Mayor Joseph Peterson suggested the name be changed to James R. DeSana Arts and Cultural Center in honor of DeSana, 81, who spearheaded the efforts to begin the facility at the former Masonic Temple.

“Thanks to his insight, we now have a cultural facility that meets today’s demands for a place where our residents of all ages can showcase their talents,” Peterson said in the letter.

The center, 81 Chestnut St, offers youth theater, lectures, paintings, music and a variety of other art-centered activities.

The name change will follow two other buildings named for notable residents: The Benjamin F. Yack Recreation Center, named after the city’s first recreation superintendent and the William R. Copeland Center, named after state Rep. Bill Copeland.

Peterson cited DeSana’s years of service to the community as another reason for the change. DeSana served on the City Council from 1957 to 1961, from 2001 to 2005 and from 2009 to the present. He was mayor from 1961 to 1969, from 1987 to 1997 and from 2005 to 2009. He was a Wayne County commissioner from 1969 to 1976 and a state senator from 1976 to 1986.

A street in the city is also named for DeSana.