OPERA America Announces 2013 National Opera Trustee Recognition Award Recipients

Cherie Shreck, Des Moines Metro Opera (Indianola, IA)

Cherie Shreck's lifetime contributions to Des Moines Metro Opera have been so significant that the organization recently named her an honorary member of its Board of Directors. She was a member the Board for a total of 14 years between 1989 and 2007, including serving as president of the Board of Directors, Executive Committee member and guild president. Ms. Shreck has demonstrated dedication to the financial well-being of Des Moines Metro Opera by organizing the first Salisbury Challenge to raise $1 million and establishing the Des Moines Metro Opera Foundation over 20 years ago. The Challenge ended up raising more than $4 million. Additionally, Ms. Shreck helped to lead the Apprentice Artist Endowment Campaign, the second Salisbury Challenge and the Robert L. Larsen Legacy Campaign. Her leadership has resulted in the Des Moines Metro Opera Foundation making an annual disbursement of nearly 25% of the annual company operating costs. Keenly aware of the importance of exposing individuals of all ages to the joys of live theater, Ms. Shreck brings new patrons to opera performances each year and has been a member of the Des Moines Metro Opera Guild since its inception. Stated Artistic Director Michael Egel, "Any compliment given, award lauded or applause rendered for the company is in part similarly accorded for Cherie...[she] is the epitome of an active and vibrant Board member who believes that the arts help define who we are not only as a community, but as a society as a whole."

Timothy J. Wagg, Opera North (Lebanon, NH)
Timothy Wagg has been an Opera North volunteer continuously since 1996 after retiring from a career with Consolidated-Bathurst in Canada. Since that time, Mr. Wagg has served on the Board of Trustees, the Advisory Committee and chaired the Finance Committee. He has created a new revenue source for Opera North by managing sponsors and underwriters for the season playbill, securing $25,000 for the company annually. Mr. Wagg works tirelessly to make opera more accessible to larger audiences. In addition to attending all Opera North performances and recruiting newcomers, he analyzed Opera North's demographic data, resulting in a 6% ticket sales increase. Mr. Wagg has obtained recognition and support for Opera North through his many corporate and nonprofit relationships. As Executive Director Pamela Pantos noted, "While the funds are vital to Opera North's bottom line, the bonds that have developed have solidified Opera North's reputation as a willing community partner." Mr. Wagg revolutionized the accounting and financial practices of Opera North by updating protocols, securing a payroll system and managing reporting networks. Mr. Wagg also prepares the Opera North annual audit. After 16 years of dedicated service, Mr. Wagg is "a permanent fixture" at Opera North and a board member who exemplifies the generosity and commitment of an award-winning trustee.

OPERA America's commitment to recognizing excellence in governance is shared by its sister organization, Opera.ca, the Canadian national association for opera. Opera.ca honors
Arthur R.A. Scace, Q.C., a long-time volunteer leader and past president and chairman of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Opera Company, as the 2013 recipient of its National Opera Directors Recognition Award.

OPERA America will pay tribute to these 2013 honorees and celebrate their remarkable achievements at a dinner and reception on Friday, February 22, in New York City.

The National Opera Trustee Recognition Program is made possible by the generous support of Bank of America.