I began my work in theater as a small child by creating fully conceived productions with kids from my neighborhood and have since gone on to work as a professional theater artist and educator with numerous theaters and educational institutions. I have directed over 80 productions and also have extensive experience in playwriting, improvisation, and puppetry.
I have over 25 years theater arts and education experience. I currently am faculty member at the renowned Emerson College where I teach a variety of theater courses including courses in theater education, directing/coaching young actors and puppetry. I also serve as Vice President of the Boston Area Guild of Puppetry. I have an extensive directing experience have directed over 80 full-scale stage productions. I founded the theater program and served as its chair for fourteen years at the nationally award winning Anoka Middle School for the Arts. I served six years as a faculty member at the College of Saint Scholastica where I taught multiple Arts Integration courses. I co-founded Young Artists Initiative (YAI), whose purpose was to provide arts education and performance opportunity to youth who were typically underserved. I served as its Artistic Director for eight years. I am also grateful to have been a guest presenter at various conferences across the country on topics such as arts integration in the classroom, playwriting, puppetry and how to create learning environments that are inclusive for all youth.
My advocacy work for youth has been featured in media outlets across the country such as CNN, Rolling Stone Magazine, Mother Jones Magazine and the New York Times. I was a featured presenter at President Obama's first ever LGBTQ Youth Summit. He was also featured in the award-winning documentary film Same Difference.
I was awarded the Ordway Center's Education Award for Community Commitment, the Center for Excellence in School Counseling and Leadership's (CESCaL) Educator of the Year Award, the Anoka-Hennepin District 11's TOP Teacher Award, runner up for GLSEN's Teacher of the Year and the Senator Allan Spear Award for Community Commitment.
A complete list of my work in the areas of directing, education, playwriting and youth advocacy can be found on the My Work page of this site.
ARTS ADMINISTRATION Vice President Boston Area Puppetry Guild. New England Area Theater Department Chair Anoka Middle School for the Arts Anoka, MN Artistic Director Young Artists Initiative (YAI) Saint Paul, MN Artistic Director Historic Mounds Theatre Saint Paul, MN Artistic Director Anoka Children’s Theatre Anoka, MN Production Manager Hey City Theatre Minneapolis, MN Managing Director/ Caught In the Act Improv Troupe Macomb, IL Artistic Director Company Manager Western Illinois Children’s Theatre Macomb, IL Special Events Coordinator Playworks Prior Lake, MN Company Manager CLIMB Theatre Inver Grove, MN Board Member Playhouse 15 St. Francis, MN
COMMITTEE WORK IN COMMUNITY ARTS AND ARTS EDUCATION Metropolitan Regional Arts Council Served on the committee that evaluates and assess arts grant applications from various organizations across the state of Minnesota, then decides which organizations receive funding from the state’s legacy funds which are used to support and build the arts in Minnesota.
Perpich Center for the Arts Education Served on the committee that created the benchmarks that would be implemented by the Minnesota Department of Education to be used by school administrators and peer evaluators to assess the work of arts educators. I also provided advisement and feedback in the development of Minnesota’s K-12 Arts Standards.