It has not only been a pleasure to work alongside David as a co-teacher, but also to observe his work with the students. He empowers students on the Reservation in a unique way and gives them ownership of their communities through photography and reflection. During an intensive summer course, we combined photography with writing to prompt students to think critically of their surroundings and themselves. His process allows students to engage with hands-on activities that give them true knowledge of what they're doing. David displays tremendous patience with the individuals that he works with and ensures understanding before moving on to the next step of the learning process. The photographic process instills a sense of individual pride in the products students create.
- Alexander Herlich, Salish Kootenai College Upward Bound, Pablo, Montana

David J. Spear, Director, Co-founder

David J. Spear is Director and co-founder of A VOICE-Art Vision & Outreach In Community Education. David oversees project development and implements programming for A VOICE.

He is a Montana Arts Council teaching photographer and a part-time instructor at Salish Kootenai College. David developed Our Community Record at Two Eagle River School, a project that encourages students to explore and document their community, culture, and history through storytelling and photographic studies. He has also taught photography at New York University and the Maine Media Workshops. In 1984, David developed the International Center of Photography's Community Outreach Program for underserved communities of New York City and was its primary instructor through 1997.

Author of the monograph Gas Smells But Not Like Skunks, David has exhibited his work in Europe and throughout the United States. His publication credits include, among others, New York Times Magazine, German Geo, Columbia Journalism Review, Granta Magazine, and Ode Magazine. In 2012 and 2000 he received the Howard Chapnik Grant for the Advancement of Photojournalism. In 2004 he received a Puffin Foundation Grant, and in 1995 was named the Ernst Haas Photography Educator of the Year.

His work has been shown in Montana at the Holter Museum of Art, the Missoula Art Museum, Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art and in Butte, Montana by the Butte Silver Bow Archives. His photographs have been collected by the Missoula Art Museum, the Montana Museum of Art and Culture at the University of Montana, and the Salish Pend d'Oreille Culture Committee, and is held in private collections throughout the United States.

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