Theatre Building head let go; deluge for Huff
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#1 Jul 21, 2009
Congrats to Keith Huff and Chicago Dramatists! And boos and hisses to the board of TBC.
#2 Jul 24, 2009
The trouble started back in the 90s when some folks believed that the decreasing availability of resources for not-for-profits would be ameliorated by having corporate-types on their boards. In my 30 years in the field I never saw any one issue that did as much systemic damage as this. I am sure there are some nice people with MBAs, I just haven't met any yet. Nearly universally when these folks are on nfp boards their egos become time bombs within the heart of the organization. They must hold sway over decisions, they have no idea of the arts, they have no conception of building community, their ear holes grew over in babyhood, they are contemptuous of the actual artists and the administrative staff, they can't add and subtract, they really have no idea of fundraising or grants writing and, as in the case of the TBC, they ultimately destroy the organization. Young artists take note...corporate people on your board are the kiss of death. For the most part, they could not care less about fund raising.
A beautiful arts organization which was a true incubator for creativity and talent in America will soon be a memory. Alas, it already is. Of course, the funders won't touch them now.
#3 Jul 24, 2009
You couldn't be more accurate, Loretta. This is the heart of the problem, exacerbated by the fact that there are few good citizens who want to really help such organizations and who are capable of "getting or giving."
How downright nasty can you get, firing Joan on her 25th anniversary of working to keep this place alive? As I understand it, these folks have not been raising necessary funds on their part, but they are going to hire someone yet unknown who is just going to come in and do miracles...probably because they'll be paid so well! And you're right, the present funding sources will not continue to ante up for an organization that becomes destabilized.
As co-founder of Theatre Building, I dearly hope the community...advisors, friends, workshop members, actors and artists will rally round Ms. Mazzonelli and save this company. She's done a good job, and let's face it, her retirement is not so far off...having time and her input into find a good replacement would be oh so wise...
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