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News Release: Business Leaders and Art Educators Join National Foundation Board

Chapter Leaders standing in front of the nation's capitol building

The Educational Theatre Foundation (ETF) is pleased to announce the appointment of Krista Carson Elhai, Peter Hagan, Elwood Hopkins and Allison Rawlings to a term on the National Board from 2020 to 2023. The ETF National Board of Trustees is composed of prominent leaders across a diverse range of industries, including entertainment, finance, hospitality, law, education, and nonprofit theatre, all with a common passion for theatre education.

Krista Carson Elhai, Theatre Educator, California
Elhai has taught theatre for 36 years, at both Hemet and Claremont High Schools in California, where she has directed more than 300 productions. Serving on the California Thespian board since 1993, she is a former chapter board president and California Chapter director for 11 years before serving two terms on the Educational Theatre Association’s national board. She was instrumental in the creation of EdTA’s west coast benefit Thespians Go Hollywood, and in honor of that work, was named the EdTA National Volunteer of the Year in 2017. Elhai has received the EdTA California Teacher of the Year Award and has been inducted into both the California Thespian and EdTA’s National Hall of Fame. She is co-director of Theatre Teacher Bootcamp, an intensive workshop for theatre teachers offered in the summer months and currently serves on the College Board’s Pre-AP Arts Committee.

Peter Hagan, President, Dramatists Play Service, New York
Hagan’s theatrical publishing industry experience spans more than 25 years. He began his career at the William Morris Agency, and subsequently worked at Writers and Artists. He was theatre department head at The Gersh Agency and at Abrams Artists Agency, representing writers, directors, and designers. His clients included writers Alan Ball, Don DeLillo, Ariel Dorfman, Jules Feiffer, Horton Foote, Beth Henley, and Romulus Linney, among many others. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia.

Elwood Hopkins, Founder, Emerging Markets, California
Hopkins is a national expert on urban policy, place-based initiatives, and funder collaboratives. He founded and, for 20 years served as President and Managing Director of Emerging Markets, Inc., which helped major financial institutions and supermarket operators open branches in low-income neighborhoods nationwide. Hopkins is currently presidential scholar of the Kresge Foundation and an advisor to the USC Center on Philanthropy and Public Policy and the California Executive Roundtable on Philanthropy and Equity. He has also worked with the Aspen Institute Roundtable on Comprehensive Community Development, Chapin Hall Center for Children and Families, Harvard University’s Executive Session on Philanthropy, and USC’s “Prioritizing Place” and “Drawing on Detroit.” He is the author of Collaborative Philanthropies (Rowman & Littlefield 2005). In 2018, Hopkins founded the Craig Zadan Memorial Fund, to support ETF in honor of the late theatre and film producer Craig Zadan.

Allison Rawlings, Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications, NBCUniversal, California
Rawlings oversees communications for the network’s brand strategy digital initiatives, diversity/inclusion pipeline programs, executive thought-leadership, and crisis communications. Before joining NBC, she was head of public relations for DreamWorks Animation where she led all communications efforts for the global entertainment company. A theater-lover at heart, Rawlings has spent much of her career working with or for non-profit arts organizations. In addition to serving as the longtime director of communications for the Geffen Playhouse, she has worked on brand strategy for Center Theatre Group, publicity for the Hollywood Bowl, and was on the team that helped open Frank Gehry’s Walt Disney Concert Hall.

ETF provides essential financial support to enhance excellence in theatre education and to expand access to school theatre programs for every child, putting them on a more positive life path. ETF is the philanthropic arm of the Educational Theatre Association, which is the home of the International Thespian Society, an honorary organization active at more than 5,000 schools, that has inducted more than 2.4 million theatre students since its founding in 1929.


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