Artists Rep Announces New Managing Director

Artists Rep Announces New Managing Director

Artists Repertory Theatre is pleased to announce that J.S. May will join Artistic Director Dámaso Rodríguez to lead the company as Managing Director at a transformative time in the company's 36-year history. His selection follows a six-month national search by Artists Rep's Board of Directors. May is an expert strategic management and fundraising leader whose experience includes work at some of the region's most significant nonprofit organizations and civic institutions. May will begin his role immediately.

"After an extensive search and interview process involving dozens of highly-qualified applicants, we are pleased and honored to announce that J.S. May will be joining Dámaso Rodríguez to jointly lead Artists Rep," said Mike Barr, Chair of Artists Repertory Theatre's Board of Directors. "His impressive management experience with nonprofits in Portland, and his proven marketing and fundraising skills, make him a great fit at the right time for our organization."

"Artists Rep is at an extraordinary moment in their history," said Artists Rep's new Managing Director J.S. May. "From the $7.1 million gift that allowed the organization to pay off the mortgage and provide financial stability to the potential sale of half the block, Artists Rep is poised to be more than just a theatre. With world-class artistic leadership from Dámaso Rodríguez and continued collaboration with ArtsHub partners, Artists Rep has the potential to foster more arts initiatives as a thriving arts center in Portland. All these elements enable Artists Rep to expand their mission of providing intimate, provocative theatre, and I am delighted to be joining this team."

"I am thrilled that J.S. is bringing his vast experience as a leader, strategist, and fundraiser to Artists Rep," said Artistic Director Dámaso Rodríguez, who has also been serving as Interim Managing Director since December 2017. "His passion for our mission is inspiring. I can't wait to partner with him on all that's ahead for Artists Rep at this exciting and transformational time for our company."


J.S. (John Stuart) May is a seasoned fundraising and communications professional who has worked with a wide range of local, regional, national, and international nonprofit organizations. He has helped raise more than $500 million over the course of his career.

For eleven years ending in 2018, he was the chief fundraising, marketing and communications officer, and strategist for the Portland Art Museum - Oregon's premier visual arts institution with an annual attendance of more than 325,000. For the seven years prior to his tenure at the Portland Art Museum, J.S. led the fundraising practice for Metropolitan Group, a Portland-based social marketing firm that works to create a more just and sustainable world. For the six years preceding Metropolitan Group, he led the growth of the region's leading pediatric teaching and research hospital as executive director for the Doernbecher Children's Hospital Foundation at OHSU. Before Doernbecher, J.S. spent six years supporting the expansion and growth of the region's most trusted media source as the director of corporate support for Oregon Public Broadcasting. A graduate of the University of Oregon, J.S. has volunteered for numerous nonprofit organizations, serving multiple terms as president of the board for both the Portland Schools Foundation and the Portland Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals. He currently serves as president of the Cycle Oregon board, and is a past board member for the Creative Advocacy Coalition. J.S. is an avid yogi, cyclist, and reader.


Artists Repertory Theatre's mission is to produce intimate, provocative theatre and provide a home for artists and audiences to take creative risks. Artists Rep is Portland's premiere mid-size regional theatre company, and is led by Artistic Director Dámaso Rodríguez and Managing Director J.S. May. Founded in 1982, Artists Repertory Theatre is the longest-running professional theatre company in Portland. Artists Rep became the 72nd member of the League of Resident Theatres (LORT) in 2016 and is an Associate Member of the National New Play Network (NNPN).

Artists Rep's 2018/19 season can be found here.

Artists Rep has become a significant presence in American regional theatre with a legacy of world, national, and regional premieres of provocative new work with the highest standards of stagecraft. The organization is committed to local artists and features a company of Resident Artists, professionals of varied theatre disciplines, who are a driving force behind Artists Rep's creative output and identity.

RESIDENT ARTISTS-Artists Rep productions feature the work of a core group of over two dozen multidisciplinary theatre professionals. Hailing from around the country, the Resident Artists are nationally renowned and award-winning actors, directors, writers, designers, and educators who have chosen to make Portland and Artists Rep their artistic home. Working together and independently, they create inventive and theatrically rich experiences for audiences while playing a major role in defining Portland's cultural landscape.

TABLE|ROOM|STAGE-Established in 2015, Table|Room|Stage (T|R|S) is Artists Rep's new play program that offers development opportunities for local and national playwrights, and ensures that underrepresented voices are heard on stage. This program strives to make a meaningful impact on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the theatre field by mandating opportunities for women writers and writers of color, and cultivating the next generation of theatre-goers. Artists Rep is committed to bringing the exciting work of women, transgender, and non-binary writers and writers of color to its stages with this program. Artists Rep's first completed T|R|S commission was The Talented Ones, by Yussef El Guindi (premiered April, 2017). The second T|R|S commission was The Thanksgiving Play, by Larissa Fasthorse (Sicangu Lakota) (premiered April, 2018). The third T|R|S commission will be Wolf Play by Hansol Jung (to premiere March, 2019). Current playwright commissions include: Linda Alper, Dael Orlandersmith, Steve Rathje, and Andrea Stolowitz. T|R|S is also developing work with playwrights Anthony Hudson and Susannah Mars. To learn more about all the projects, playwrights, and programs of T|R|S visit here.

EDUCATION-The 2018/19 Artists Rep season launched a robust education program with a dedication to programs that help develop theatre artists and arts professionals. These education opportunities focus on engaging and elevating our community by offering professional-level classes, coaching and workshops with our Resident Artists and guest artists. These classes serve artists seeking professional development, as well as curious community members who can take classes on subjects such as dramaturgy, script-writing, acting for communication, and more. With the innovative Student Ambassador Program, students learn about the inner-workings of a major nonprofit professional theatre, meet once per month, see shows for free, and participate in discussions with leading theatre artists and professionals. The purpose of the program is to introduce students to the full range of skills and ideas that are essential to running a professional theatre and to foster the next generation of arts leaders and professionals. Access and enrichment continues for schools and educators who enjoy ticket discounts, school programming, and workshops. Artists Rep's pre- and post-show discussions have been enhanced to include post-show mingling with the cast, director and staff, and a dedicated conversation with production designers.

ARTSHUB-Artists Rep is also home to the ArtsHub, where a diverse range of artists and arts organizations find a home and thrive with access to affordable administrative, performance, and rehearsal space, as well as myriad support services. The ArtsHub serves as a community arts center, where performance venues and lobbies buzz with creative energy and Portland's arts-loving audiences gather. Over the past year, Artists Rep hosted 324 rehearsals and more than 600 performances, events, and other happenings by 51 groups. To learn about the arts organizations of Artists Rep's ArtsHub visit here.

Artists Repertory Theatre receives generous support from our community of patrons, including significant leadership gifts from: Anonymous, The Collins Foundation, The Robert & Mercedes Eichholz Foundation, Ronni Lacroute, The James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation, Regional Arts & Culture Council, The Shubert Foundation, and David & Christine Vernier. Additional Corporate and Foundation support comes from: Advance Gender Equity in the Arts (AGE); Hotel deLuxe; Jackson Foundation; Kinsman Foundation; Oregon Arts Commission, a State Agency; Oregon Cultural Trust; The Oregonian/OregonLive (media sponsor); Rafati's Catering; and US Bank.

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