Darryl Fairchild, trusted and respected community leader, is a true product of Dayton. Not only was he born and raised in Belmont, he has spent almost his entire life in our city, getting to know its neighborhoods, its streets, its gathering places and especially its people. He currently lives in the Dayton View neighborhood with his wife and their daughter, who attends Dayton Public Schools.
Fairchild has a long history of serving the people of Dayton. He was the founder and community organizer for Lift Greater Dayton, an organization of faith groups, unions and schools which worked to better our city. Lift’s predecessor, VOTE!Dayton, was part of the largest nonpartisan voter mobilization effort ever in Ohio in 2008. Fairchild founded the Greater Dayton Interfaith Forum and served as Executive Director of Greater Dayton Christian Connections. He served on the steering committee which started the Dayton Dialogue on Race Relations, and he led the city’s response to aid Hurricane Katrina victims. He currently serves on the Greater Dayton Premier Management Board, and is the Manager of Chaplain Services at Dayton Children’s Hospital.
Fairchild was born in Belmont, the second child of an NCR employee and a Miami Valley Hospital nurse. He lived almost next door to his church and only a few blocks from his grandparents. He walked to school and to nearby shops, the library, the movie theater and playing fields, and was well known in the neighborhood because for nine years he delivered the local newspaper. During the 1970s’ busing, Fairchild was transferred to Residence Park School and he later attended Dunbar High School. By this time he was an honor student, a varsity athlete and a student government leader. After two years and the making of friendships which would prove to be lifelong, he was reassigned to Belmont High School, where he continued his leadership roles in student government and from where he graduated. Sadly, his father died during this period of his life, which meant a lot of part-time and summer jobs so that he could afford to attend college.
He graduated from the University of Cincinnati, where he studied psychology, worked as an RA, became a triathlon competitor and was inspired by the writings of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King. Sensing a call to ministry, he enrolled at United Theological Seminary and, still working hard at various jobs to pay tuition, he graduated a few years later. He then attended the Joint Doctoral Program of the University of Denver and Iliff School of Theology. While in Denver, at the age of 26, he had the bicycle accident which damaged his spinal cord and left him partially paralyzed.
In addition to the leadership roles listed above, Darryl Fairchild was on staff at United Theological Seminary, was recruited and served as Executive Director of Greater Dayton Christian Connections, worked on the Sharen Neuhard for Congress campaign, and pastored a Dayton area church.