ICYMI: Why the entire board of Seattle's ACT Theatre just stepped down
"A Contemporary Theatre — Seattle’s ACT company — has announced that its entire board of trustees has voluntarily stepped down," said author Mike Davis for KUOW. "The only exceptions are three positions required by law — the chair, secretary, and treasurer."
"The change was sparked when board members read an article in American Theatre Magazine by Michael Bobbitt titled "Boards are broken, so let's break and remake them." Bobbit is Langs' counterpart at the New Repertory Theatre in Watertown, Massachusetts."
"In the article, Bobbitt argues that nonprofit boards are broken, and need to be dismantled and rebuilt. He notes that most boards don’t represent the communities they serve, and points out the tension between creative vision and fiduciary responsibility. That further raises questions around who should direct a theatre's creative vision — board members or artistic staff?"
“What is happening at ACT is the result of unprecedented collaboration between the ACT Trustees and ACT’s world-class staff leadership over multiple years," Dr. Eric Bennet, board chair, said in a statement. "Given that there’s no blueprint for this type of organizational equity and change to draw from, this has meant answering fundamental questions together to chart our path forward. The ACT Board’s restructuring is about trusting that, through equity, we’ll be a more vibrant, thriving theatre and able to bring audiences the most authentic contemporary work."