What steps will you take to ensure the financial health of Pentacle Theatre?

I believe the key to the financial health of Pentacle Theatre is providing consistently high-quality productions that will appeal to a diverse audience. As we emerge out from under the cloud of Covid, we need to find ways to expand our membership and bring audiences back into the theater. During this process, it would be my goal to be a part of making wise, informed financial decisions, including exploring outside sources of revenue, and taking steps to maintain the high quality of theater expected by our current patrons that will also draw in the next generation of theater-goers.

 

How will you represent the theater?

My main goal in representing the theater would be to build consensus and cohesiveness between Theatre leadership and Pentacle members. Additionally, I see my role as a board member as serving as an ambassador to the community at large, helping to spread the word about what an incredible cultural treasure Pentacle is and has been for over six decades.

 

What volunteer work have you done for Pentacle Theatre?

My volunteer work at Pentacle extends back almost fifty years when I first became involved. I have served on the Governing Board for multiple terms, holding the offices of President, Vice President, and Secretary at various times. I have directed, assistant directed, and run both lights and sound for a variety of productions. I have been on the Play Reading Committee (now the Script Reading Committee) several times, serving as chair as well as a regular member. I also served as the Pentacle Theatre Historian for close to ten years, during which time I created the beginnings of a database to capture and preserve the participation of volunteers in all aspects of Pentacle productions. I have been active in committees formed to celebrate Pentacle anniversary functions, including serving as co-chair for Pentacle’s Fiftieth. Finally, I have appeared as an actor in 60+ Pentacle shows in a wide variety of musical and non-musical roles. I consider being selected as a lifetime member of Pentacle Theatre one of the greatest honors of my life.

 

What is your day job? What is your level of responsibility at this job? What other relevant experience or education will you bring to board service.

I recently retired from a lifelong career in education. This career started as a classroom teacher where I taught speech, drama, and language arts for 20 years at Central High in Independence. During that time, I chaired the committee that put on the state speech tournament, later moving exclusively into the drama position where I directed close to 40 productions at the high school level. My more recent work was with the Oregon Department of Education where I worked as an assessment specialist, organizing and supervising large groups of teachers and other educators in developing and scoring state tests. My work as a leader in these activities has given me experience in coordinating large projects, building consensus among diverse groups of people, and following established policies to meet demanding timelines.

 

Please describe the skills and core competencies that you will bring to the board.

Once of the most important attributes I would bring to the board is my deep love and passion for Pentacle Theatre. While this is not something that would be considered a “skill,” I think a sense of passion is incredibly important to effectively participate in any project. As stated in earlier responses, I have significant experience in leadership roles both within and outside my theater life. I consider myself a willing “team player” and recognize the importance of being, above all, a good listener who carefully considers the ideas and opinions of others during a decision-making process.

 

What do you like most about Pentacle Theatre?

While there is much to like (or love) about Pentacle, the aspect that I appreciate most is the opportunity to work with so many talented, dedicated people in a truly creative environment.

 

Tell members why you want to be a member of the Pentacle Theatre Governing Board.

It feels as though Pentacle is at a bit of a crossroads as we recover from the “down” period brought on by the pandemic. I think my long history with the Theatre can be a valuable asset as we navigate this period of recovery. This history has given me perspective on those things that have worked in the past and those that have been ineffective. At the same time, I have learned from experiences in my own life to embrace change when it can make a positive difference. From a personal standpoint, my recent retirement gives me ample time to pursue volunteer activities, and serving on the Board is one I feel particularly well-qualified for. Lastly, I feel that Pentacle Theatre has afforded me so much that has enriched my life, it is only natural for me to want to give back.

 

Please describe your goals for your three-year term, if elected.

My major goal would be to make decisions based on what would be best for the current and future financial and artistic health of the Theatre. This entails putting aside any personal agendas and truly exploring what is best for the greater good of the Theatre. I would also make it a goal to increase membership and volunteerism in the Theatre. An integral part of the longevity of Pentacle has been its volunteer base, which has responded over and over when there has been a need to pitch in and complete a variety of projects large and small.

 

Pentacle Theatre is on a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion journey. Please describe your commitment to this kind of work and why it is important in an arts organization.

In my most recent position, our staff was deeply involved in diversity, equity, and inclusion work. As a member of that staff, I attended multiple workshops and participated in small and large discussions to promote DEI within our work environment. Additionally, as we developed test questions and selected reading passages for inclusion on state tests, we constantly endeavored to make the test relevant and fair to the remarkably diverse student population that we served. This type of engagement is also critically important to arts organizations, particularly those who produce live theater. An awareness of the cultural diversity in our community should inform the productions we schedule for our seasons. And the greater the diversity in our community of directors, crews, and actors, the more we will be able to produce a variety of shows that call for diversity in casting. I would also be an advocate to explore more opportunities for non-traditional casting as a means of being more inclusive and expanding our audience.