WaterTower Theatre Re-elects Derek Blount as Pres. of the Board of Directors

WaterTower Theatre (WTT) has announced its slate of new Board officers and Board members at its recent Annual Meeting held this month. Derek Blount was re-elected for a second term as President of the Board of Directors. WTT also announced the election of new Board Officers which include John Ackley, Vice President; Buddy Frazer, Secretary and Katie Myatt, Treasurer. Each of these officers were re-elected for a second term.

WTT welcomes the appointment of Maureen Anderson, Rosalind Benjet, Holly Canterbury and Barbara Daseke to the Board of Directors.

The WaterTower Theatre 2011-2012 slate of Board members is:

Derek Blount, President; John Ackley, Vice President; Buddy Frazer, Secretary; Katie Myatt, Treasurer and Board members Maureen Anderson, Rosalind Benjet, Barbara Bigham, Caryn Blackwell, Anita Braun, Holly Canterbury, Ben Cunningham, Barbara Daseke, Elizabeth Fratantuono, Jeanne Hooker, Alan Hunn, RoBert Mayer, Jr., Terry Martin, Larry McCallum, Karol Omlor, Allie Theisen and Lori Ward.
Derek Blount joined the WaterTower Theatre Board of Directors in 2006 and has served in the roles of Board Treasurer, Co-Chair of The Corporate Council, Board Vice President and in September 2010 was elected President of the Board of Directors.

Professionally, Derek serves as Area President for Sovereign Bank, a Dallas-based financial institution and past corporate sponsor of WaterTower's annual fundraising Gala. In his role with the bank, Derek focuses on corporate banking including commercial real estate lending, mergers & acquisitions, equipment financing and working capital loans. Derek's professional experience prior to Sovereign includes corporate lending roles with international banking syndicate Credit Lyonnais (now Credit Agricole) and helping establish the Dallas commercial banking division for Hibernia Bank (now CapitalOne Bank). Derek began his banking career with JPMorganChase through completion of their executive training program and later serving as a commercial banking officer. A Texas native, Derek received both his BBA in Finance and his MS in Marketing from Texas A&M University. Derek is an active member of American MENSA, an enthusiastic traveler and an avid runner. He married Bethany (Harrison) Blount in June 2011.

"We're extremely pleased to announce the re-election of Derek Blount as President as well as Derek's executive committee and these four new appointments to our board," says Terry Martin, Producing Artistic Director and Chair of the Board Resources Committee. "Derek brings an extensive business, banking and community background, along with an innovative approach to leadership and a strong record of commitment to the community. I'm very pleased Derek agreed to serve another term as our President. With his youthful vigor and energetic optimism, Derek and his Board are committed to finding new and creative ways to advance our artistic and educational mission. Our new roster of Board members bring unmatched enthusiasm and unique experiences to the table. We are excited about being able to apply that passion and dedication to our work here at WaterTower Theatre."

"WaterTower Theatre is adding valuable new expertise to our Board with the inclusion of four active, long-time Addison residents in Maureen Anderson, Roz Benjet, Holly Canterbury and Barbara Daseke," said Derek Blount. "Each member brings a unique perspective to our mission of opening minds to inspire people to experience and embrace live theatre, and we look forward to benefiting from their considerable talents and knowledge of the Town of Addison. "

"Barbara brings an extensive background in non-profit volunteer leadership and fundraising, and an extraordinary track record of achievement, while Holly has established a distinguished history as one of Addison's leading citizens in the Town of Addison. Roz offers a wealth of education experience and knowledge which, combined with Maureen's extensive marketing and sales background, make their individual strengths tremendous assets for WaterTower Theatre," said Blount. "My special thanks to Board member Terry Martin for his exemplary leadership as Chair of the WaterTower Theatre Board Resource Committee in identifying these new Board members."


Maureen T. Anderson
Maureen Anderson is a prominent Addison resident and has served on a number of civic and volunteer organizations locally including the North Dallas Chamber of Commerce. She has been in the real estate industry for more than 20 years, many of them associated with Ebby Halliday Realtors, and has achieved top accreditations as a real estate and marketing professional including her CRS, ABS and SRES certifications. Born in India, she lived in London and studied in Heidelberg, Germany, obtaining her Bachelor of Arts degree, before coming to the United States. Maureen brings extensive sales and marketing experience to the Board as well as public relations and event planning. Maureen is a charter member of Women of WaterTower Theatre (WOW!) and serves on both the WOW! and Spotlight Gala Steering Committees.

Rosalind Benjet
Rosalind (Roz) Benjet is a long-time subscriber and patron of WaterTower Theatre, and a former Trustee and Board member. She, and her husband Merv, have been long-time residents of Addison. Roz is a retired teacher of English literature and composition. She has served on numerous non-profit boards, including a past member of the WaterTower Theatre Board. She is actively involved in the Congregation Shearith Israel, Jewish Family Services, the Addison Business Association and the Dallas Jewish Historical Society. Roz is a charter member of WOW!

Holly Canterbury
Holly Canterbury has lived in Addison for more than 25 years. She is the former owner of Holly Enterprises/Del Mar Scientific. A member of Christ Anglican Church in Plano, Holly was on the Vestry of St. Mathias Anglican Church. One of the longest serving members of the Addison Business Association, she started the original Carnival at Oktoberfest in Addison and served as ABA's President and Treasurer for many years. Holly has been a patron and subscriber of WaterTower Theatre for many years and currently serves on the Spotlight Gala and WOW! Steering Committees.

Barbara Daseke
Barbara Daseke is the owner of Barbara Elliott Interiors and, with her husband Don, has been a long-time resident of Addison. She is one of the most dynamic non-profit fundraisers in North Texas, having served most recently as the Chair of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra's AT&T Gala and has worked on many other fundraising events for organizations such as the Dallas Museum of Art, Southern Methodist University and TACA. Last year, she served as Co-Chair, with Anita Braun, of WaterTower Theatre's 2011 Spotlight Gala and is the Chair of the 2012 Spotlight Gala. Barbara currently serves on the Boards of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, TACA and SMU Meadows School of the Arts. Barbara is a charter member of WOW! and also serves on its Steering Committee.

WaterTower Theatre has become a theatrical force through its consistent excellence and sharp programming. Combining Broadway-quality productions with the beauty of an intimate playing space, WTT provides experiences that are powerful and insightful, intense and uplifting. WTT provides the community with an opportunity to examine man's conditions from all perspectives and promotes growth through humor and drama.
Now in its 16th season, WTT began life in 1996 with 136 brave subscribers. Today, with over 2000 subscribers and a budget of $1.3 million, it consistently earns rave reviews in The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer, and other local publications. With 110 Dallas Theatre League Leon Rabin Nominations and 32 wins to its credit, as well as 18 Dallas Fort Worth Theatre Critics Forum Awards, WaterTower Theatre is home to the finest local talent.

A committed and intrepid producer of new work, the theatre has presented 5 world premiere productions and 14 regional premiere productions to date. WTT's tradition of world premiere programming includes the musicals Song of Motherhood and Blind Lemon: Prince of Country Blues. Dramatic world premieres include Free Fall with Sandy Duncan, Baptized to the Bone by Dave Johnson (which is enjoying healthy post-WaterTower Theatre life) and A Country Life, Producing Artistic Director Terry Martin's southern adaptation of Anton Chekhov's Uncle Vanya. Both Blind Lemon and A Country Life earned WTT a Dallas Theatre League Leon Rabin Award for Best New Work.

WTT is privileged to make its home at the Addison Theatre Centre, an award-winning flexible theatre space that can be reconfigured to accommodate each new production. WaterTower's expanding artistic vision, deepening service to the community and growing audiences have led to a unique partnership with the Town of Addison, one aimed at the development of an exciting destination for patrons to experience the best in theatrical and performing arts.

WaterTower Theatre is a Constituent of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), the national organization for the American theatre and a member of the Dallas Theatre League.

Terry Martin's long and distinguished career in the theatre has established him as one of this country's leading actors, directors and arts administrators. As WaterTower Theatre's Producing Artistic Director for the last 14 years, Terry has placed an indelible stamp on the professional theatre scene in Texas through is stewardship of one of the nation's fastest growing theatres. During his tenure at WaterTower Theatre, the company has received 110 Dallas Theatre League Leon Rabin award nominations and 18 Dallas-Fort Worth Critics' Forum awards.

His work as both an actor and director has won him numerous awards including the Dallas Theatre League Leon Rabin award, the Dallas-Fort Worth Critics' Forum award, and the Column awards. In 2005, he received Dallas Theatre League Leon Rabin Awards for his own original play, A Country Life, both for his direction and for Best New Work.

Terry began his professional career in New York City where he spent 12 years working in theatre, television and film. While there, he directed and acted at The Village Theatre Company, Carnegie Hall Studios and Theatre at St. Marks, as well as television appearances on ABC's One Life to Live and NBC's To Serve and Protect.
As an actor, Terry's wide ranging repertoire is highlighted by his 2008 WaterTower Theatre performances in Blackbird, for which he won a 2008 Dallas Critic's Forum Award, as well as The Woman in Black for which he was nominated for a 2000 Rabin Award for Best Actor and Latterday Plays for which he was nominated for a 2002 Rabin Award for Best Actor. In 1998, he won the Dallas Theatre League Leon Rabin Award for Best Actor for his performance in The Only Thing Worse You Could Have Told Me. At Fort Worth's Stage West, Terry's performance in Lips Together, Teeth Apart won him the 1997 Dallas Observer Award for Best Actor.

Terry's extraordinary body of work as a director at WaterTower Theatre includes a number of influential, award-winning productions such as Our Town, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, Sweeney Todd, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, A Country Life, Take Me Out, Cabaret, Little Shop of Horrors, The Laramie Project and The Crucible. Equally comfortable directing a large, Broadway-style musical such as The Music Man or an intimate play like Doubt, Terry is widely acknowledged as one of this country's most influential directors working today. He is a proud member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers. Terry directs the 2011-2012 season opening production of Spring Awakening as well as productions of Rockin' Christmas Party, The Diary of Anne Frank and Smokey Joe's Café this season.

He attended the University of Alabama and has trained professionally with Sanford Meisner, Fred Kareman, Wynn Handman, Sally Johnson and Lehmann Byck.

He is a committed mentor and teacher and teaches on-going classes in the Sanford Meisner technique at WTT and has periodically served as an adjunct professor of acting at the University of Texas at Dallas.

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