Jeffrey Woodward named managing director of Syracuse Stage
Jeffrey Woodward named managing director of Syracuse StageJanuary 23, 2008SU News ServicesSUnews@syr.edu
Timothy Bond, producing artistic director of Syracuse Stage and the Syracuse University Department of Drama, and Elizabeth Hartnett, chair of Syracuse Stage’s board of trustees, have announced the appointment of Jeffrey Woodward as managing director of Syracuse Stage, effective March 24.
Woodward, 49, will be Syracuse Stage’s third managing director in its 35-year history. As managing director, Woodward will report directly to and work closely with Bond, concentrating on strategic planning and the overall direction of the theatre. He will also oversee the day-to-day business and operations of Syracuse Stage — including fundraising, finance, marketing, board relations and personnel — and he will share oversight of Syracuse Stage’s production and education departments with Bond.
Woodward’s appointment is the result of an extensive international search conducted by a committee of Syracuse Stage and SU professionals, assisted by Gregory Kandel, a partner in the leading arts executive search firm Management Consultants for the Arts (MCA), headquartered in Cos Cob, Conn. The same firm assisted in the placement of Bond as producing artistic director in July 2007.
“Jeffrey brings to Syracuse Stage the exceptional skill and talent he honed while working at one of the nation’s pre-eminent regional theatres,” says Bond. “I am thrilled he has accepted our offer, and I am eager to begin a partnership in the exciting work of building the future for Syracuse Stage and the Syracuse University Department of Drama.”
The McCarter Theatre Center’s artistic director, Emily Mann, praised Woodward’s contribution to the Tony Award-winning theatre in Princeton, N.J. “Jeffrey and I have had an extraordinary partnership for the past 17 years, during which time McCarter has become a world-class institution with national prominence,” Mann says. “In addition to his strong leadership and business acumen, what distinguishes Jeffrey from other managers is his passion for the work on our stages. While he will be missed here, I know that Syracuse Stage will be the happy beneficiary of his transformative leadership.”
Woodward joined McCarter in 1991. During his tenure, the theatre’s operating budget more than doubled, the cash reserve and endowment grew from $300,000 to more than $12 million, and ticket and contributed income reached record levels. Woodward also oversaw a campaign to build a $14.1 million addition to McCarter, the Roger S. Berlind Theatre, which was completed in August 2003.
“This is a wonderful opportunity and a good fit for me,” says Woodward. “During the search process, I quickly became impressed by Tim, who is an exceptional and well-regarded artist. I was also taken by the passion and commitment of the board of trustees and staff.”
“It is an ideal situation when you can replace a valued and experienced leader with a valued and experienced leader,” says board chair Hartnett. “Jeffrey’s contribution to the success of the McCarter Theatre proves his ability, and his passionate commitment to theatre will mean an exciting time ahead for our patrons, staff and artists.”
In accepting the position at Syracuse Stage, Woodward joins a theater that enjoys a unique symbiotic relationship with the SU Department of Drama, one of 18 such programs in the country. Only four of the programs focus on professional actor training for undergraduate students, and of these, SU’s Department of Drama is the largest.
“One of Jeff’s many strengths is that he already has a real sensibility for the relationship between a professional theater company and a professional training program,” says Carole Brzozowski, dean of SU’s College of Visual and Performing Arts. “He is committed to furthering the integration of our drama programs with Syracuse Stage, and this will mean many new and exciting opportunities for our students. I look forward to working with him on our shared vision.”
Woodward is the past president and a trustee of ArtPride New Jersey, a statewide lobbying organization for the arts; a trustee and secretary of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national service organization of nonprofit theatres; and the secretary for the League of Resident Theatres, a national collective bargaining and management association. While president of ArtPride, he successfully led a campaign to restore state funding for the arts after it had been completely eliminated and helped establish a new hotel/motel tax that now funds the arts in New Jersey.
He has served as a panel chair and an onsite evaluator for the National Endowment for the Arts and as a panelist for the NEA/TCG Theatre Residency Program for Playwrights, the Leading National Theatre Program of the Duke and Mellon foundations, and the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Woodward was a member of the New Jersey Department of State Transition Team in 2001, the TCG Executive Director Selection Committee in 2006 and the 2007 search committee for the New Jersey State Council on the Arts executive director.
Woodward has worked for the Hartford Stage Company, the Mark Taper Forum, Northlight Theatre and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival; has served as a consultant to numerous organizations, including the University of Chicago, the Court Theatre, Rider University/Westminster Choir College, Arizona Theatre Company and the Weston Playhouse; and is a trustee of the Princeton Summer Theatre. In spring 2001, Woodward, under the sponsorship of the U.S. State Department, traveled to South Africa to serve as a management consultant to the Baxter Theatre Centre and the Grahamstown Festival.
Woodward received a B.A. from Pomona College and an M.B.A. from New York University.