McCarter Announces New Leadership Team Members

Donya K. Washington named BOLD Associate Artistic Director with Joe Peacock as Director of Development.

By: Apr. 17, 2024
McCarter Announces New Leadership Team Members
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McCarter Theatre Center has announced two significant appointments to its leadership team: Donya K. Washington as the new BOLD Associate Artistic Director and Joe Peacock as Director of Development.

Donya K. Washington joins McCarter from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (OSF), where she has been pivotal in her role as Director of Repertory Producing. During her nine seasons at OSF, Washington served as Lead Producer on several acclaimed productions including Rent, The Three Musketeers, Once on This Island, and The Tempest. Washington's directorial works span a variety of themes and narratives, including the ripple, the wave that carried me at People's Light Theatre and Shutter Sisters at The Old Globe. She holds an MFA in Directing from Brown University/Trinity Rep and a BFA from Tisch School of the Arts at NYU.

McCarter Artistic Director Sarah Rasmussen commented, “I've known Donya and her work for 15 years,” said Sarah Rasmussen, Artistic Director at McCarter Theatre Center. “She is a beloved and deft director and producer at multiple large theatres, as well as, a great artist and teammate.”

Washington added, “I'm so excited to get started. My mom grew up in Trenton, so I've spent my life coming to the area and am thrilled to get back to a place that's within driving distance to Halo Farms and the Columbus Farmers Market. I'm a big believer that theatre is a team sport, I can't wait to learn how McCarter plays the game and meet my new teammates.”

The position of BOLD Associate Artistic Director is supported by a major grant from the BOLD Theater Women's Leadership Circle. "We are thrilled that Donya Washington will take on this important role at McCarter," says Carol Dunne, director of the Helen Gurley Brown BOLD Theater Women's Leadership Circle. "Donya's career trajectory within the BOLD Circle from early career at the Alliance Theater to now BOLD Associate Artistic Director at McCarter is, indeed, a full circle that signifies the power of women promoting women in the American theater."

The grant's aim is to advance the artistic leadership of women in professional theatres nationwide. At McCarter, Donya will help lead the artistic department with season planning, project development, and producing in addition to pursuing her own directing work.

Joe Peacock brings over two decades of fundraising expertise to his role as Director of Development, most recently as Chief Philanthropy Officer for Cincinnati Opera. During the Opera's centennial in 2020, Peacock spearheaded efforts to raise nearly $1M in additional funds for special programming and artistic initiatives. Amid the pandemic, he also managed both fundraising and box office operations for 2021's Summer at the Summit festival, an outdoor event that drew more than 10,000 attendees. Thanks to his efforts and a $1.3M grant from the Mellon Foundation, Cincinnati Opera continued to produce workshops and commission new opera throughout the crisis.

McCarter Executive Director Martin Miller noted, “Joe Peacock's remarkable track record in building community support for the arts makes him an invaluable addition to our team. His colleagues describe him as a mentor, a compelling fundraiser, and a strategic thinker. His experience will be crucial as we work to expand McCarter's artistic ambitions and mission-driven service to the community.” 

Peacock added, “I believe that great art elevates our community and teaches us how to relate to the diverse world around us. I am excited to help grow the impact of McCarter Theatre Center for the Princeton community and beyond.”

For more information about McCarter Theatre Center's upcoming season and programming, visit

About McCarter

McCarter is one of the country's flagship theatres and a vibrant center for community and for the performing arts. Located on the campus of Princeton University, the company is an independent nonprofit, serving as a nationally renowned, multi-disciplinary creative hub of arts and ideas, offering theatre, music, dance, spoken word, and educational programs for all ages. A two-time Tony Award winner, McCarter's legacy of artistic excellence traces back to the theatre's first performances in 1930. Thornton Wilder's Our Town, Kaufmann & Hart's You Can't Take It with You, and William Inge's Bus Stop all had their premieres on the McCarter stage, paving the way for a long history of collaborations with playwrights to launch remarkable works that have gone on to tens of thousands of performances reaching millions of audience members around the world. The company is equally revered for presenting global artists on its stages, including Alvin Ailey, Yo-Yo Ma, Samara Joy, Hasan Minhaj, Jon Stewart, Caetano Veloso, Rhiannon Giddens, Patti Smith, Esperanza Spalding, Lake Street Dive, and Herbie Hancock, among many others. Of the 100,000 community members who directly participate in the company's work every year, more than 5,000 are students taking part in McCarter's robust educational offerings in Princeton, Trenton, and in schools throughout the region. McCarter leads with values of “justice and joy, and beauty in belonging,” creating stories and experiences that enliven minds, expand imaginations, and engage communities. 


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