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Dame Rosemary Squire To Present Martha Richards With 2020 Women In the Arts & Media Coalition VintAge Award


The ceremony will include speakers who have worked with Ms. Richards throughout her illustrious career.

Dame Rosemary Squire To Present Martha Richards With 2020 Women In the Arts & Media Coalition VintAge Award

The Women in the Arts & Media Coalition will host a digital presentation of the 2020 VintAge Award, which celebrates the voice and vision of women in the arts and media as they age.

The 2020 Elsa Rael VintAge Award honoree is Martha Richards, the Founder and President of WomenArts, originally The Fund for Women Artists, an affiliate member organization of the Coalition. The award will be presented to Ms. Richards by Dame Rosemary Squire, Co-Founder of Ambassador Theatre Group and Trafalgar Entertainment and the first woman to be named UK Entrepreneur of the Year.

The event will be co-hosted by Avis Boone and Yvonne Curry, Co-Presidents of the Coalition, along with Shellen Lubin and Mary Hodges, Co-Presidents of the League of Professional Theatre Women, the organization which founded the Coalition through the concerted efforts of Elsa Rael, for whom this award is named and who will also be in attendance.

The ceremony will include speakers who have worked with Ms. Richards throughout her illustrious career including Paul Tetreault (Director of Ford's Theater in Washington, DC), Alice Tuan (nationally-acclaimed, internationally-produced Chinese American playwright), Rebecca Strang (former Marketing Director at StageWest), Christine Young (Director of the Honors College at University of San Francisco; co-author of Not Even: A Study of Gender Parity in Bay Area Theatres), Jovelyn Richards (writer, performance artist, storyteller, radio host, and diversity consultant), Deborah Magdalena, (founder of Spoken Soul Festival/SWAN Day Miami), Melinda Pfundstein (Executive Director of Statera Arts in Cedar City, UT), Sophie Dowllar (2019 recipient of the StateraArts' Martha Richards Visionary Woman in Leadership Award), and Mary Watkins (composer of Fannie Lou Hamer). The presentation will also include performances by award-winning singer/songwriters Lydiah Dola and Jennifer Hill.
Dame Rosemary Squire is one of the most prominent women in British theatre of the modern era. The business that she co-founded in 1992, Ambassador Theatre Group, went on to become the world's number one live-theatre company. She is currently co-founder, Joint CEO and Executive Chair of Trafalgar Entertainment, a premium international live entertainment business and home to the newly announced Trafalgar Theatre (set to open Spring 2021), Trafalgar Theatre Productions, Trafalgar Releasing, Stagecoach Performing Arts, London Theatre Direct, Luke Shires Marketing, Jonathan Church Theatre Productions, Chiswick Cinema and More2Screen. In 2014, she made history as the first woman to be named EY UK Entrepreneur of the Year. She was a National Member of the Arts Council England Board for 10 years, was Chair of two major appeals for Great Ormond Street Hospital and is currently Joint Chair of The Hall for Cornwall. Respected advocates for cultural industries in the UK and internationally, Rosemary and her husband/business partner, Sir Howard Panter, topped The Stage 100 for seven consecutive record-breaking years. In 2007 Rosemary was awarded an OBE for Services to Theatre and in 2018 received a Damehood for Services to Theatre and Philanthropy. In 2019, Woking Borough Council bestowed Honorary Freedom of the Borough upon Rosemary and Howard, both long-serving members of the community.

Martha Richards served as the Executive Director of WomenArts from January 1995 until her retirement in June 2020. During her 25 years with WomenArts, Richards was a tireless fundraiser and advocate for women in the arts, and she created a variety of programs designed to increase the visibility and opportunities for women artists in all genres. Prior to WomenArts, Richards served as Executive Director of Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College and as Managing Director of StageWest, a regional theatre in Springfield, Massachusetts. She has written and lectured extensively on arts and cultural policy issues. Richards has been frequently recognized for her commitment to women and to the arts. In April 2006 she was one of three U.S. nominees (with Quincy Jones and Wynton Marsalis) for the prestigious international Montblanc De La Culture Award for outstanding service to the arts. In April 2009 she was inducted into the BayPath College 21st Century Women Business Leaders Hall of Fame for her work in philanthropy. She has been honored as one of three "founding mothers" of the Women's Fund of Western Massachusetts. In 2018 StateraArts created the annual Martha Richards Visionary Leadership Award in her honor. Richards has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California Berkeley and a J.D. from the University of California Hastings College of Law. She was one of the founding directors of California Lawyers for the Arts.

Saturday, November 14 at 3pm EST/12pm PST via Zoom. Admission is $10 for members of any of the Coalition's member organizations and $15 for non-members. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit

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