Arena Stage Names New Board Chair

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater announces that Judith N. Batty, a Trustee since 2010, has been elected by the Board of Trustees to a three-year term as Board Chair, effective July 1, 2016. Beth Newburger Schwartz, who served in that position since July 2013 and as a Trustee since 1993, will begin a new role as Board President. Outgoing Board President David Shiffrin, a Trustee since 1992, will continue to serve on the Board as a Vice Chair.

Of the Board changes, Artistic Director Molly Smith shares, "Judith Batty is deliberate, enthusiastic and committed to the theater. We have had an excellent Board Chair with Beth Newburger Schwartz and look forward to Judith's major talent as a leader. She will bring her business acumen to the role, as well as her amazing and deep connections to the Greater Washington area. I know she will take the reins of Arena Stage's Board of Trustees with vigor."

"Arena has always relied on inspired board leadership to keep us ambitious and growing in a smart way," adds Executive Director Edgar Dobie. "Beth has been that leader and has worked with Judith allowing for a seamless transition. Time is our most precious resource and Beth has been incredibly generous to Arena in sharing an abundance of her time! Judith brings with her a wealth of knowledge, has demonstrated a profound understanding and appreciation for our mission and has already done a remarkable job of introducing new members from her impressive network. The future looks bright with Judith as Chair."

Officers of the Board also include Vice Chairs Eric Braverman, Edgar Dobie, Vicki J. Hicks, John Lynham and Raymond Sczudlo; Secretary Shawna Watley; Assistant Secretary Richard A. Newman; Treasurer Larry Franks; and Assistant Treasurer Hubert M. Schlosberg. For a full list of the 2016/17 Board of Trustees visit

Dobie and Smith are pleased to announce that Khady Kamara, who joined the company in 2001 and most recently served as Chief Marketing Officer, will move into a newly created position as Associate Executive Director, reporting directly to Dobie. In addition to her current duties overseeing all earned income activities and communications, Kamara will work alongside Dobie on strategic planning, donor cultivation and community/government relations.

On Kamara's new position, Dobie says, "Khady's work as our Chief Marketing Officer has been remarkable in terms of revenue growth, enhanced institutional awareness and attracting and retaining first-class marketing, communications and event team members. Her added responsibilities in the role of Associate Executive Director will further benefit Arena Stage."

"Khady is a powerhouse and we are happy to support her growth as Associate Executive Director," adds Smith. "I can't wait to see her fly with her new responsibilities."

Judith N. Batty retired from ExxonMobil in 2015 after 28 years of service. During her time at ExxonMobil, she worked in a variety of positions in the legal department and public and government affairs department. She has extensive experience in structuring and negotiating complex international acquisitions, divestitures and market entry. During her tenure she has had two overseas assignments. Between 2006 and 2009, Judith was General Counsel of the ExxonMobil affiliate in Tokyo, Japan, and between 1994 and 1996, she was Senior Counsel, and then Acting General Counsel of Mobil North Sea Limited in London, UK. She began her legal career at the United States Department of Justice, through its Honors Program in the Trial Section of the Antitrust Division. Judith is a native New Yorker and received her B.A. from New York University College of Arts and Sciences in 1978 and her J.D. from New York University School of Law in 1981. She has been active in a number of professional and charitable organizations. She is on the Board of Girl Scouts USA, a member of the National Executive Counsel of the Links, Incorporated, one of the largest African American women's service organizations in the U.S., and is a member of the Board of Trustees of Levine Music. She is also an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. She is a past president of ExxonMobil's employee affinity group, Black Employee Success Team (BEST), has served on the Board of Trustees of The Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia and is a past member of the Dallas and London Junior Leagues.

Beth Newburger Schwartz is an entrepreneur who has founded and sold several businesses and is currently heading Richlynd Federal and Epoch Communications. She is known for her work as director of communications for the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Prior to joining the National Trust, she was appointed by President Clinton to co-chair the Presidential Women's History Commission and vice-chair the bi-partisan Congressional Women's Progress Commission. She also served in both Clinton administrations as associate administrator of the general services administration and outreach coordinator for the White House Office of Women's Initiatives and Outreach. Before entering public service, Beth was the founder and CEO of Corabi International Telemetrics, Inc., the company that invented and marketed the patented telepathology process that allows physicians to make diagnoses from a remote location. She was also the founder/president of Owlcat/Digital Research, Inc., the company that developed the first computer-based test preparation products for the SATs. Newburger Schwartz has also served as publisher of Washington Woman Magazine, chairman/CEO of Health Street, Inc., marketing manager of The Washington Post and the director of advertising for the New Republic Magazine. Newburger Schwartz is a former chairman and currently a trustee of the National Children's Museum and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library. In addition to Arena Stage, she also serves on the boards of the Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, President's Council of Cornell Women, ApolloPacs and Boat Owners Association of the United States. The Cornell University graduate shared her love of theater and the arts with her late husband, Richard Schwartz, the founder of BoatUS and an extraordinary philanthropist.

Khady Kamara joined Arena Stage in 2001 and has been an integral member of the communications team, eventually being promoted to Senior Director of Marketing and Communications before taking over as Chief Marketing Officer and ultimately Associate Executive Director. Under her leadership, Arena's sales team repeatedly broke box office records for a number of shows. She successfully administered the upgrade and transition of Arena's ticketing software to meet the ever-changing needs of its growing patron base. Her work was integral in the success of Arena's temporary residency in Crystal City and the opening of the Mead Center for American Theater. During Khady's tenure she pioneered unprecedented efforts to maximize donations with ticket purchases, and group sales and facility generated revenue has more than doubled in scope and range of audiences reached.

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director Molly Smith and Executive Director Edgar Dobie, is a national center dedicated to American voices and artists. Arena Stage produces plays of all that is passionate, profound, deep and dangerous in the American spirit, and presents diverse and ground-breaking work from some of the best artists around the country. Arena Stage is committed to commissioning and developing new plays through the American Voices New Play Institute. Arena Stage impacts the lives of over 10,000 students annually through its work in community engagement. Now in its seventh decade, Arena Stage serves a diverse annual audience of more than 300,000.

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