Chad Bauman Returns to Arena Stage as Associate Executive Director

By: Jun. 21, 2012

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater's Artistic Director Molly Smith and Executive Director Edgar Dobie announce thatnationally renowned arts marketer Chad Bauman will return to Arena Stage in July 2012 in the new role of Associate Executive Director. Bauman was most recently Director of Marketing and Membership for The Smithsonian Associates, and before that he led the communication and audience services efforts for Arena Stage for nearly five seasons. Khady Kamara, who was named Interim Director of Communications after Bauman's departure, has recently been appointedSenior Director of Marketing and Communications.

In this new role, Bauman will oversee marketing and communications, facilities, operations and information technology, as well as manage the strategic planning activities and participate in the fundraising work of the organization. Arena Stage is now reorganizing to more accurately accommodate operating and staffing needs in the building. These changes will help to ensure the continued financial stability of the organization.

"After two full seasons in our new home, Molly and I felt it was an appropriate moment to consider the lessons learned and to review the way we are organized," says Dobie. "With a growing emphasis on earned income, a need to be nimble in our ability to plan for all the future holds, and the expanding list of tasks that require the skills of an experienced administrator, we concluded that it was the right time to add the new position of Associate Executive Director. We feel blessed that Chad is able to return to Arena Stage in this newly minted role. He is most welcome."

"Increasingly my work has evolved to include responsibilities beyond those traditionally found in marketing and communications, such as producing the Grand Opening of the Mead Center and leading institution-wide technology enhancements," says Bauman. "Almost since the time I moved to Washington, Arena Stage has been home for me, so returning will be a pleasure. I look forward to working with Molly, Edgar, the Board of Trustees and the staff on developing a new strategic plan that supports and advances our mission as a national center for American theater."

Before working with The Smithsonian Associates, Chad Bauman was Director of Communications for Arena Stage, where he supervised the marketing, media relations, publications and audience services departments. He joined Arena in 2007 to develop strategies to help guide the company through a 2.5-year transition period while the Mead Center for American Theater was being built. While at Arena, he led a rebranding effort repositioning the 60-year-old resident theater as a national center; reversed a seven-year subscription decline almost doubling the base; reduced patron attrition by 7%; and increased subscription revenue by 105%, total earned revenue by 130%, and the number of new patrons by 90%. During his tenure, Arena set new all-time records for highest-grossing play, highest-grossing musical, highest-grossing week and highest-grossing day in four separate fiscal years.

Previously, he was the Director of Marketing and Communications at Americans for the Arts, where he was responsible for all earned revenue goals, branding and strategic communications. As a speaker and consultant, he has worked with a wide variety of clients including City Theatre Company, Carnegie Hall, The Flynn Center for the Performing Arts, the Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, St. Louis Regional Arts Commission, ArtsMidwest, the Arts & Business Council and the National Arts Marketing Project. He sits on the advisory committee for and is a member of the Board of Trustees for the Contemporary American Theater Festival. He designed the new Technology in Arts Management program at American University that launches this summer and is an adjunct professor in the MFA Producing Program at CalArts and the graduate Arts Administration Program at Drexel University. In 2011 and 2012, Washington Life named Chad one of the most influential leaders under 40 in our nation's capital. He founded the Arts Marketing Blog and has written for DC Theatre Scene and ArtsJournal. He graduated as an Ahmanson Scholar with an MFA in Producing from CalArts, and as a Presidential Scholar in the Honors College with a BS in Education from Missouri State University.

Khady Kamara joined Arena Stage in 2001 and has been an integral member of the communications team through her work in audience services, eventually being promoted to Director of Audience Services before taking over as the Interim Director of Communications. Under her leadership, Arena's sales team repeatedly broke box office records for a number of shows. Kamara successfully administered the recent 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 Kamara's tenure, group sales revenue has more than doubled in scope and range of audiences reached. She also pioneered unprecedented efforts to maximize donations with ticket purchases.

Kamara has a background in management and economics and received her MBA from the University of Maryland. She is the recipient of national and local awards acknowledging her service and professionalism, including the 2009 Outstanding Box Office Award on behalf of Arena Stage from the International Ticketing Association (INTIX) and as a 2009 Offstage Award Honoree from the League of Washington Theatres (LOWT).

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater is a national center dedicated to the production, presentation, development and study of American theater. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Molly Smith and Executive Director Edgar Dobie, Arena Stage is the largest company in the country dedicated to American plays and playwrights. Arena Stage produces huge plays of all that is passionate, exuberant, 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. Now in its sixth decade, Arena Stage serves a diverse annual audience of more than 300,000.

Follow Arena Stage on Twitter @arenastage or or find us on Facebook at


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