Delfin Vigil has been hired as the Petaluma Arts Center’s new executive director. Vigil will replace Val Richman, who retired after serving as executive director for 3-1/2 years.

Vigil served in leadership roles at Project Open Hand in San Francisco and Legal Aid of Marin. He also worked as a breaking news and in-depth features reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, where he covered issues ranging from immigration to independent music and film, the center’s Monday announcement stated.

A native of San Francisco and life-long Bay Area resident, Vigil is the author of two books, including “NIKKO: Concrete Commando” (Rumpus, 2010) a collaboration with artist Paul. In 2013, Vigil collaborated with Bay Area Hip Hop pioneer Lyrics Born on a 12” single that was shortlisted for a Grammy nomination.

“My true passion is with the arts and I am honored for the opportunity to contribute directly to my community,” said Vigil, a resident of Petaluma since September of 2008. “I’m looking forward to exploring new and creative ways to help the Petaluma Arts Center reach new heights as it passes the ten-year anniversary of building community through art.”

Vigil takes up the post on Monday, Dec. 11. The Petaluma Arts Center is located at 230 Lakeville Street, three blocks east of downtown, next to the SMART station.