Deborah Stewart Joins 16th Street as Managing Director
North Berwyn Park District's 16th Street Theater announces that Deborah Stewart has joined Artistic Director Ann Filmer in leading 16th Street as the theater's new Managing Director. Stewart comes to 16th Street from Steppenwolf Theatre where she was Director of Foundation and Government Relations for the past nine years. Before that, Stewart worked with Filmer at Chicago Dramatists as Development Director when Filmer was Producing Director. Stewart began June 23 following the departure of Eddie Sugarman who left 16th Street to lead the Theatre of Western Springs.
"I am honored Deb has joined me in leading 16th Street, says Filmer. "We are so lucky to be bringing on a woman who has such a deep knowledge of and experience in development, finances and the Chicago theater scene as a whole."
"I am delighted to be joining 16th Street in this new role," states Ms. Stewart. "I love 16th Street's mission as a place where audiences are invited to experience not only their own stories, but to experience their neighbors' stories and stories of 'the other.' 16th Street offers such an intimate and personal theater experience that often can take folks - many of them not your mainstream theater-goers - out of their comfort zones to break down barriers - geographic, linguistic, cultural, historical - and get them in dialogue about important issues. 16th Street has a unique place in the Chicago area's theater ecology and I am excited to now take an even more active and driving role in its continued growth and envisioning."
DEBORAH STEWART has served as a member and treasurer of The 16th Street Theater NFP Board of Directors since 2009. She now joins the 16th Street staff as Managing Director after a nine-year stint as Director of Foundation and Government Relations at Steppenwolf Theatre Company. Prior to Steppenwolf, from 2001 - 2005 she was Development Director for Chicago Dramatists. She was Managing Director for Illinois' oldest professional outdoor theater, Festival Theatre in Oak Park from 1997 - 2001; and free lanced as a grant writer specializing in the arts and arts education for some years before that. She received an M.A. in European History from the University of Chicago and a B.A. from the University of California-Santa Cruz. Deb is a 20+ year resident of Oak Park where she has lived with her husband Roy Plotnick and raised two now-grown sons.