Dr. Monica White Ndounou (Convener)
Dr. Monica White Ndounou is an Associate Professor of Theater and the 2017-2018 Sony Music Fellow at Dartmouth College. She is the President of the Black Theatre Association (BTA), a focus group of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education (ATHE) and the founder of the Pay-It-Forward All-Career Level Mentorship Program. Her interdisciplinary research projects span a broad range of topics. Professor Ndounou is currently working on several projects including but not limited to a book, documentary film and digital archive exploring black American contributions to developing acting theories and practices.
Dr. Nicole Hodges Persley
Associate Dean Nicole Hodges Persley is an associate professor of theatre and served as acting chair and chair of the department from spring 2016 to fall 2017. She also served as a co-director of the School of the Arts during the fall 2017 semester. As associate dean, she will work to build proactive efforts to ensure attention to DEI concerns at the institutional and individual level. Professor Hodges Persley is a sought-after campus facilitator and speaker on issues of diversity and inclusion in higher education and the arts. She is an award-winning teacher, mentor and community leader whose scholarship and creative work offer important strategies to address racial and social injustice.
Ekundayo Bandele founded Hattiloo Theatre in Memphis, TN, in 2006. He’s directed many of August Wilson’s plays and played King in ‘King Hedley II.’ He’s the author of ‘If Scrooge was a Brother’. From 2012 – 2014, he spearheaded a $4.3M capital campaign that resulted in the construction of Hattiloo’s venue that opened debt-free in 2014. In 2016, he raised $900,000 to build the Hattiloo Development Center, which opened in April 2017, also debt-free.
Anthony D. Meyers
For over twenty years, Anthony Meyers has provided guidance and support to nonprofit organizations, corporate and private clients in marketing, sales, programming, special events, and fundraising. He has produced preview events, conferences, workshops, and galas for international arts organizations, government officials, colleges, film festivals, tourism agencies, visual artists, and financial firms.
Anthony has served in administrative, management, and consulting roles for companies throughout the New York tri-state area, and has developed programs in New York, New Jersey, Cincinnati, and Miami. He was a We Are the Bronx management fellow through the Center for Community Leadership through the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC). And he has developed key partnerships between nonprofit organizations and corporate stakeholders during many of his full-time positions as well as consultancies. As a creative, Anthony was awarded a BRIO Award in Screenwriting from the Bronx Council on the Arts. He was awarded artist residencies at Jacobs Pillow (choreography), Space One Eleven (Visual Art), Southern DanceWorks (Choreography), and Casita Maria (Creative Writing). His visual art has appeared in exhibitions in New York, Alabama, and Texas. Anthony’s personal essay, “My Own Protection: A Fortieth Anniversary Status Report,” was published in Black Gay Genius: Answering Joseph Beam’s Call (Vintage Entity Press, 2014).
Anthony currently works full-time as an Arts Program Specialist for the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, managing a diverse grantmaking portfolio of over 140 nonprofit cultural organizations. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University and is pursuing a Master of Science degree in Organizational Change Management, and a Post Masters Certificate in Leadership and Change, at The New School. He serves on an internal Diversity Committee at the Department of Cultural Affairs, on an LGBT Policy Taskforce for Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr, and is a steering committee member of the Stonewall 50 Consortium.
He is a regular speaker at colleges and universities, sharing his career experiences in arts administration. Anthony is in discussions with Tufts University to teach a course on arts administration and leadership. In 2017, Anthony created Leading ChangeMakers, an education and empowerment program that cultivates leadership from within for racially diverse nonprofit arts administrators. Programs include workshops, upcoming training programs, and consulting services. He brings expertise in audience development, program and event management, fund development, advocacy, and serves as a coach to cultural professionals.
Ms. McCord is President and CEO of EQ, The Equity Quotient, a national training and organizational development firm dedicated to supporting nonprofits interested in becoming more just and equitable community partners, with equity, diversity, and inclusion as outcomes of their work. EQ’s expertise and its curriculum provide Dismantling Racism training for the field of arts and culture, grounded in an analysis of the history, policies, and practices of the field.
Keryl McCord is a veteran arts manager and administrator with forty years of experience in many facets of the arts. Her background includes managing director of two equity theater companies: Oakland Ensemble Theater Company, a five-hundred seat equity theater in downtown Oakland, CA, and Crossroads Theater Company, New Brunswick, NJ, the only black run LORT theater at the time, and the first such company to receive the Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theater. Crossroads Theater Company also received 4 Tony nominations for It Ain’t Nothing But the Blues, transferring to Broadway in 1999.
Ms. McCord led the League of Chicago Theaters/ League of Chicago Theaters Foundation, leaving Chicago to take a post at the National Endowment for the Arts as Assistant Director of Theater Programs, and then Director of Theater Programs in 1991.
She served on the executive committee of the National Black Theater Summit on Golden Pond in 1998, convened by the late Pulitzer Prize winning playwright, August Wilson. She was a founding board member, and Senior Vice President of the African Grove Institute for the Arts (AGIA), Newark, NJ, of which Mr. Wilson served as chairman. She remained with AGIA until Mr. Wilson’s passing, when she then went on to serve as Director of Institutional Development for New Jersey Symphony Orchestra.
In December 2016, after more than seven years as Managing Director, she retired from Alternate ROOTS to launch EQ. ROOTS is a 40-year-old nationally recognized, regionally focused network and service organization for activist artists in the South. Ms. McCord was responsible for overall day-to-day management, including fundraising and development, shepherding the organization through a period of unprecedented growth.
She recently completed a three-year term as an Advisor for the New England Foundation for the Arts, National Theater Project, and has served as a panelist for the Joyce Foundation, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts, among others.
Additionally, for the past three years Ms. McCord has served as a consultant for Dance USA’s Engaging Dance Audiences program and is currently, an advisor and facilitator for its new program, Dance Fellowships to Artists, funded by the Doris Duke Foundation.
Keryl is chair of the board of Working Films, based in Wilmington, NC.
EQ has conducted Dismantling Racism training and consulting with organizations such as: • League of Chicago Theaters, Chicago, IL • University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Winston-Salem, NC • University of North Carolina School of the Arts, High School, Winston Salem, NC • The New Jersey Theatre Alliance, Princeton, NJ • Paper Mill Playhouse, Milburn, NJ • New Music USA, New York, New York • Cleveland Public Theatre, Cleveland, OH • Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP), Washington, DC • The High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA • League of American Orchestras, New York, NY • DePaul Theater School, Chicago, IL • Fractured Atlas, New York, NY • National New Play Network, Washington, D.C. • New England Foundation for the Arts, Boston, MA • Alternate ROOTS, Atlanta, GA • United Scenic Artists 829, New York, New York • Theatre Sound Designers and Composers, New York, New York • Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Washington, DC • Dance USA, Washington, DC • University of Alabama, Department of Theatre and Dance, Tuscaloosa, AL • California Presents, San Francisco, CA
Mary Lou Aleskie