Merrimack Repertory Theatre Selects Bonnie Butkas as Executive Director
Merrimack Repertory Theatre (MRT) has selected Bonnie Butkas as Executive Director, following an executive search process led by Arts Consulting Group (ACG). She will begin her tenure in Fall 2017.
Ms. Butkas joins MRT from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), where she served as Senior Director of Foundation Relations. In this role, she was responsible for leading the university’s strategic efforts to secure funding from private and family foundations. Under her guidance, RIT secured its first significant gifts from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Henry Luce Foundation. Prior to her time at RIT, she served as the Director of Development at Geva Theatre Center in Rochester, New York. During her tenure, Ms. Butkas oversaw five years of unprecedented growth in the company’s contributed income. She played a key role in a successful $10 million capital campaign to renovate the building and grow the endowment. Ms. Butkas has also served as the Director of External Relations at the York Theatre Company, the Director of Development and Communications at TADA! Youth Theatre, Directing Assistant of The Lion King on Broadway, and the co-founder of Lexington Dance Collective.
Ms. Butkas volunteers with the Association of Fundraising Professionals of Genesee Valley, Girl Scouts of Western New York, and the YWCA of Rochester & Monroe County. In 2016, she co-founded Action Together Rochester, an all-volunteer organization that fights for progressive causes in the Greater Rochester region. Ms. Butkas holds degrees in journalism and dance from the University at Buffalo.
In making the announcement, Search Committee Chair Stephen Irish said, “We were so fortunate to have a very large pool of exceptionally strong candidates to choose from. In the end, Bonnie Butkas clearly stood out as being the most qualified among a distinguished pool of finalists. The MRT Search Committee was unanimous in its selection of Bonnie as the new Executive Director of MRT. We are looking forward to the passion, experience, and professionalism Bonnie will bring to the role.”
“I am thrilled to serve Merrimack Repertory Theatre’s storied history and to partner with Artistic Director Sean Daniels, whose artistic vision, community partnerships, and creativity have laid the groundwork for the next chapter of MRT,” said Ms. Butkas. “I am grateful to the Board of Trustees and staff for their support, and I look forward to becoming part of this incredible community.”
“ACG would like to congratulate Merrimack Repertory Theatre and the search committee on placing Bonnie Butkas as Executive Director,” said ACG Vice President Jenna Deja. “As a strategic and visionary leader, we are confident that Ms. Butkas’ vast experience in theater and institutional growth will greatly benefit MRT as the organization enhances its role as the cultural heart of the Merrimack Valley region.”