DIRECTORS

The Brown Grand Theatre is run by a board of Directors. Without the caring dedicated board of directors our theatre would not be what it is today, a historical landmark in North Central Kansas bringing quality entertainment to you!

 

Current Board Members: 

 

 

 

 

Name: Monte Wentz, President

Job Affiliation: Wentz Eye Care, P.A.

Job Title: Optometrist

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"Since 1999."

What is your favorite show?

"I have great memories of working back stage for Steel Magnolias when I was in high school."

What interested you in theatre?

"My passion is preservation of historic buildings."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"I am on my second year as president of the board of directors. I hope that I am able to provide good leadership to the board, a general historical viewpoint of board decisions, and knowledge of caring for historic buildings."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"When I was seven, my grandfather was volunteering as construction supervisor during the restoration of the Brown Grand. I loved going down to the building to see him and watch the restoration process, and wishing that they would let me climb on the scaffolding that reached up to the proscenium arch."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"I would love to see the Brown Grand used more by the community. I also hope that in the near future we can replace the seats, making the theatre going experience more comfortable for all."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"My first real job in Junior Highschool was as a tour guide at the Brown Grand on weekends. I loved showing off the building and seeing the amazement on people’s faces when they walked into the theatre for the first time. Preservation of historic buildings is my passion, but I firmly believe that a good restoration includes those buildings being used. My hope is that the current board of directors can successfully balance the preservation of the building while making theatre and music come alive for the residents of North Central Kansas."

 

 

 

 

 

Name: Sam Sacco, Vice President

Job Affiliation: Retired

Job Title: Concordia City Commissioner

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"2 years."

What is your favorite show?

"OZ"

What interested you in theatre?

"Keeping its history alive."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"Business experience, being an active member of the Brown Grand Players and a Concordia City Commissioner."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"Directing OZ."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"Bringing it back to its grander days."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"It is an important part of history that needs to not only be preserved but enjoyed by all."

 

 

 

 

Name: John Paul Breault, Secretary/Treasurer

Job Affiliation: Walmart, Inc.

Job Title: Bakery/Deli Department Manager

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"4 years."

What is your favorite show?

"Into The Woods"

What interested you in theatre?

"Have been interested in theatre from a young age; have been involved in productions at Concordia High School, Cloud County Community Theatre, Rome Little Theatre in Rome, Georgia and here at The Brown Grand."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"My experience with the State of Georgia as an Activity Therapy Department/Rehabilitation Services Coordinator brings many skills in the area of volunteer management, grant writing, event planning, resource management, and community relations."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"Growing up in Concordia when the theatre was a movie house always made me wonder why we were watching movies in Cinderella’s House."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"As a board member my goals and dreams for the theatre are financial stability, variety of events and bringing the Brown Grand into the lives of our community members."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"I retired from the State of Georgia Regional Psychiatric Hospital System as the Activity Therapy Department Coordinator/Rehabilitation Services Coordinator and moved back to Concordia, my home town. As a Registered Horticultural Therapist I developed skills in planning a variety of hospital wide/state wide events, managing volunteers, working in conjunction with The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., and resource management as well as financial program/department management. I have written numerous successful program grants throughout my 25 year career with the State of Georgia. I look forward to providing these services and skills to the Brown Grand."

 

 

 

 

Name: Mikki Nelson

Job Affiliation: Retired

Job Title: Grandmother

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"8 years."

What is your favorite show?

"Missoula Children’s Theatre."

What interested you in theatre?

"I love acting and creating characters."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"Service, doing what needs to be done and rolling up my sleeves and getting it done."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"My first performance with the Brown Grand Players in Mame."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"I want to see the theatre become an even more important part of the community by bringing more quality shows to the theatre."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"Have been involved with many productions here as well as my grandkids being involved and I want to make sure this continues for future generations."

 

 

 

 

Name: Kristina Frost

Job Affiliation: Cloud County Community College

Job Title: Instructor of Social Sciences and Criminal Justice, Social Sciences Department Chair, Academic Advisor

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"2 years."

What is your favorite show?

"Many: opera, plays and magicians."

What interested you in theatre?

"Lifelong interest began in childhood when my parents took me to see Evita in Oklahoma City."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"Collaboration, leadership and service."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"Watching a play that I wrote, my husband directed, and my daughter performed in, come to life on stage."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"I hope to have season tickets, a continued, wide-array of diverse cultural offerings and long lines of people entering."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"I have been an active member of the Brown Grand Players for 8 years and have served as the vice president and president. I am passionate about our local community theatre and bringing diversity and culture to our community while maintaining the historic beauty of the Brown Grand Theatre. I actively serve on committees at the college and within the community and believe that it is vital to share my time and do my small part for our community. The theatre is near and dear to my heart."

 

 

 

 

Name: Melissa Williamson

Job Affiliation: K-State Research & Extension – River Valley District

Job Title: Office Professional

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"Since July 2018."

What is your favorite show?

"Children of Eden."

What interested you in theatre?

"Creativity and Play."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"I have an extensive background in nonprofit fundraising and master’s degrees in music and in arts administration. For seven years, I lived and worked in the Boston arts scene before returning to my Kansas roots in 2018."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"Michael Martin Murphey’s Cowboy Christmas show."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"To have our community see what a gem we have here in Concordia, and to have the Brown Grand flourish as an arts center for North Central Kansas and beyond."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"I was in theatre all throughout high school and was involved primarily behind the scenes. I did make a few acting appearances in Man of La Mancha and Working to sing. Otherwise, I was in the light booth or was calling the show as a stage manager. Since then, I went on to pursue a career in music earning a Bachelors and Masters in Flute Performance. I went back to my alma mater, after grad school, to teach music and launch a Community Music School program at Southwestern College in Winfield, KS. I moved to Boston in 2011 to work on a second graduate program in Arts Administration – learning as much as I could about how to run and manage non-profit organizations. After many internships with the Boston Youth Symphony, the Boston Center for the Arts, and Commonwealth Shakespeare Company (CSC), I took a full-time job in fundraising with CSC – bringing free Shakespeare productions to nearly 100,000 every summer. I then transitioned to an event and fundraising position at Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA where I worked for several years. There I wrote and won numerous grants, ran the largest fundraiser of the year – the School’s annual Gala – and worked with the development team to achieve our yearly fundraising goals. I’m excited to be on the Board of the Brown Grand because I feel I bring many experiences and talents to our team, and I can help generate ideas for the Brown Grand to advance in our community and in our region."

 

 

 

 

 

 

Name: Everett Miller

Job Affiliation: Retired from Cloud County Community College

Job Title: Choir/Great Society Conductor

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"Since its inception."

What is your favorite show?

"Great Society."

What interested you in theatre?

"Its history."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"Just a desire to see this building restored and used."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"When my wife Marlene and I attended a movie here and I looked around and said to her that this would be a wonderful performance venue."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"To keep it looking like new!"

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"I was the one with the idea to buy, restore and get the Brown Grand back to its original glory. I talked to Judy Doyen, secretary to Leon Genette, head of the Chamber of Commerce, and asked her if she thought the community would support buying and restoring the Brown Grand. She said, 'I didn’t know it was for sale. If you’re going to buy something you had better know if it is for sale and at what price?' I called Jack Roney and he said it would be for sale if it were to be used as a performance venue. I said it would be a performance venue. He said in that case it is for sale at $20,000 and he would donate the first $2,000! The rest is history!"

 

 

 

 

Name: Richard Briggs

Job Affiliation: Easy G’s, Cloud County Community College

Job Title: Waiter/Bartender, Artist in Residency

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"Since December 2018."

What is your favorite show?

"Annie Baker’s Circle Mirror Transformation."

What interested you in theatre?

"The feeling of freedom."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"Experienced actor, writer and director."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"My nephews seeing me act for the first time in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"To help usher the theatre into a new year of compelling story telling."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"I moved from LA in August when my partner was hired to teach theatre at Cloud County Community College. The Brown Grand offers a playground where I could only have dreamed of being a part of. With its rich history and exciting future, I am thrilled to be working with these folks."

 

 

 

 

Name: Violette Kjeldgaard

Job Affiliation: Cloud County Community College

Job Title: Theatre Director, English & Speech Instructor

How long have you been a Member of the Board?

"1 month."

What is your favorite show?

"That’s a difficult question. There are so many. Pretty much anything Stephen Sondheim. Amadeus by Peter Shaffer; Arcadia by Tom Stoppard; My Children! My Africa by Athol Fugard; Our Country’s Good by Timberlake Wertenbaker; Noises Off by Michael Frayne; Lend me a Tenor by Ken Ludwig."

What interested you in theatre?

"Initially, acting. I enjoyed being someone other than myself and allowing me to express something I typically don’t. As I became more active I began to have a deeper understanding on the purpose of theatre and how all facets of theatre operate. The communication and tradition of storytelling remains alive in theatre, which is exciting in an age of technology. The ability to shine a light on issues, promote reflexive scrutiny and generate discussion as well as promote connection within

community and purge emotional experiences is what makes theatre so powerful for me."

What skills do you bring to the Board?

"I’ve worked in several positions and many theatres that vary in size. This array of experience, I think could be useful as we attempt to grow the Brown Grand and what we can offering for Concordia and the surrounding community."

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand?

"I haven’t been here very long, but I thoroughly enjoy the structure itself. It’s a beautiful building, and not many people have the opportunity to work in historic houses such as this."

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

"I think we can offer a lot to the community in terms of a wide array of programming. It’d be lovely to

offer educational programs to encourage youth to become involved in the arts, which has been proven to improve learning in all fields. I’d like to see the adult community become more engaged in the arts as well, for our programming to spark intellectual conversations about our experiences in the world."

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working

member on the Brown Grand Board.

"I have a Bachelors in Theatre Arts and a Masters in Actor Training and Coaching. I am

the theatre director at CCCC and have been working in theatre since I was a young

child. I grew up with music and the arts as a large part of my life and was encouraged

and supported by family and friends to pursue that avenue, despite their concerns of a

financially stable future. I hope that my experience and education can revitalize the

Brown Grand and the community."

 

 

 

 

Name: Patricia Owensby Macfarlane, M.D.

Job Affiliation: Virtual Radiologic

Job Title: Neuroradiologist

How long have you been a Member of the Board? Since 2017

What is your favorite show? Michael Martin Murphey at the Brown Grand. And just

about any Broadway musical (Chicago my favorite).

What interested you in theatre? I was introduced to the performing and visual arts as

a young child, by my parents. They especially enjoyed theatre, which was always on the

agenda. Even when we went camping in the Black Hills, arrangements were made for a

special evening at summer stock theatre (Guys and Dolls!) My mother always

purchased the sound track records of the musicals we had seen, and we played them,

over and over and over.

What skills do you bring to the Board? I bring a love of theatre and love of this community,

perhaps some vision and perspective, from a broad life experience.

What is your fondest memory at the Brown Grand? I have many childhood

memories of the Brown Grand from its days as a movie house. Although at the

time we didn’t really understand its historic significance, even as little kids, we

somehow knew we were in a magical theatre.

What are your goals or dreams for the future of the Brown Grand?

I would love to see the Brown Grand become part of the fabric of every child who

grows up here. I would love to see folks come from far and wide to enjoy vibrant

live performances in this beautiful, classic Italian opera house.

Tell us a little about your background and why you are excited to be a working member on the Brown Grand Board. Having never taken the straight road to anywhere, my background includes everything from veterinary assistance to waitressing, bartending, teaching high school chemistry, crewing on a sailing yacht in the Caribbean, owning a retail business, starting a school in a third world country, to serving on the clinical faculty at Harvard Medical School. I have been fortunate enough, thanks to technology, to be able to return to my hometown and practice medicine via teleradiology. I’m a scientist, but have a deep appreciation for the arts - because art makes everything better. I’m excited to be a member of the Brown Grand Board, and I am honored to take my small part in its stewardship.

Chad Miner

Shirley LeDuc

Ty Genette

Jason Grogan, Executive Director

 

If you're interested in serving on the board email us at director@browngrand.org to be sent an application form.