Hall of Fame

Established by SETC in 2015, the Southeastern Theatre Conference Hall of Fame recognizes persons, living or deceased, who have made major contributions to the organization. These contributions may be administrative, artistic, and/or financial and have made a significant impact on SETC’s success over a sustained period of time. The Hall of Fame commemorates their achievements and celebrates their meaningful contributions to the organization.

Nominations

Nominations are accepted from Sept. 1 – Oct. 30 annually.

Selection Process / Other Details

  • Who can submit a nomination? Members of the board, SETC staff, or members of SETC in good standing can nominate anyone they feel appropriate.
  • Who makes selections? SETC’s Executive Committee will be the arbiter for who is selected as a member of that year’s class of recipients. Decisions by ExCom will be made by the conclusion of Winter ExCom meeting.
  • How many nominees will be inducted? Five individuals were inducted the first year (2017-2018). Up to three individuals will be inducted each year thereafter.
  • When will nominees be inducted? The induction will take place during the annual Business Meeting at the SETC Convention.
  • Who is eligible? Those individuals who are inducted will have given significant service to the organization but do not have to be members. Individuals who have received the Suzanne Davis Award are also eligible for inclusion in the Hall of Fame.
  • How will inductees be honored? Upon induction, a plaque will be presented to the inductee, and their name will be placed on a “virtual” plaque that is always present on our website.

Virtual Plaque

SETC Hall of Fame Award

In Honor of Dedicated Service That Has Shaped the Southeastern Theatre Conference

2020 Inductees
Jack Benjamin | David Wohl | Vivian & Larry Snipes

2019 Inductees
Chip Egan | Betsey Horth | Jose C. Simbulan

2018 Inductees
Don Creason | Dr. N. Bennett East | April J’Callahan Marshall | Jonathan Michaelsen | Julie A. Richardson

2020 Inductees

Jack Benjamin Headshot
Jack Benjamin

Jack retired in 2018 after 32 years at the University of South Carolina Aiken and holds the rank of Professor Emeritus. Jack served as chair of the Department of Visual & Performing Arts from 1996 until his retirement and as Executive Director of the Etherredge Center from 2012 until his retirement in 2018.

Jack began his association with Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) in 1986 and first joined the SETC Board in 1989 as the State Representative for South Carolina.  In 2002 held the position of SETC President Elect and planned the Mobile, AL SETC Convention. In 2003 he served his first term as SETC President. Since then he has served as Elected Past President, the chair of Endowment or Finance and three more terms as President of SETC. In 2002, Jack received the John F. Kennedy Center Medallion for his work in educational theatre. In 2004 he received the Founders Award from the South Carolina Theatre Association. In March 2006 he received the Suzanne M. Davis Memorial Award from SETC and in 2017 Jack was inducted into the South Carolina Theatre Association Hall of Fame. Jack currently serves on the SETC Board of Directors as the Elected Past President.

Larry and Vivian Snipes
Vivian and Larry Snipes

Vivian and Larry, Artistic and Producing Directors respectively of Lexington Children’s Theatre (LCT), have shepherded LCT from its roots as a small community theatre to its present status as a nationally recognized theatre for youth. LCT is now a $1.3 million company that provides arts and arts education to over 120,000 young people and low or no cost arts experiences to almost 18,000 young people and families each year across Kentucky.

Larry and Vivian share a true passion for providing opportunities that challenge, explore, and refine emerging artistry and strive to encourage, instill, and inspire their love for the theatre field in LCT’s staff.  Opening young people’s eyes and minds (and those young at heart) to the world of theatre and the arts has been the driving force behind every accomplishment of their careers.

Larry’s connection with Southeastern Theatre Conference (SETC) began in 1971 as a participant in the SETC High School Theatre Festival and since then he has chaired the SETC Theatre for Youth Division and served on the Auditions Committee. Vivian leads LCT’s participation in the SETC Ready to Design Awards, and both she and Larry have served as respondents and presenters multiple times for SETC.

David Wohl
David Wohl

David holds a Ph.D. in Theatre from Kent State University and recently retired from Winthrop University where he is Dean and Professor Emeritus.  Prior to his position at Winthrop, David served as Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities and Professor of Communications and Media Studies at West Virginia State University, a historically black university located in Institute, WV. He was SETC’s Treasurer from 1994 to 1996 and President in 1997-1998.  Most recently, he served as Elected Past President and Vice President of Finance and, in 2019, completed his eleventh (non-consecutive) term on SETC’s Executive Committee.  He was the recipient of the Suzanne M. Davis Memorial Award in 2001.

David has directed and/or acted in over 100 theatre productions in a variety of academic, community, and professional theatre companies. He served as Artistic Director of the Charleston (WV) Stage Company for 19 years and held the position of General Manager of the Porthouse Repertory Theatre in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.  In 2006, he received the West Virginia Lifetime Achievement Arts Award from Governor Joe Manchin. He was the recipient of Winthrop University’s Medal of Honor in the Arts in 2017.

Since his retirement from Winthrop University, he’s acted in several local theatre productions in Charleston, SC where he teaches as an adjunct faculty member for the College of Charleston’s arts management program. He also teaches online for Winthrop’s graduate degree in arts administration and has served as lead consultant for SETC’s consulting service.

2019 Inductees

Chip Egan
Chip Egan

Chip is a life member and former president of SETC having overseen the 1996 convention in Louisville, KY. He is also a past president of the South Carolina Theatre Association (SCTA). Now a professor emeritus, he spent 33 years as a professor of theatre, chair and dean at Clemson University. He first joined SETC in 1980 and became active as chair of the SETC New Play Contest. He continues his career as a professional actor and director and enjoys serving as a mentor for many in the industry. He most recently chaired the search committee for the Executive Director of SETC. He is a recipient of the SETC Suzanne Davis Award and the SCTA Founders and Lifetime Service Awards, and a member of the Clemson University College of Architecture, Arts and Humanities Hall of Fame.

Betsey Horth
Betsey Horth

As SETC Executive Director for 20 years (1999 to 2019), Betsey Horth’s leadership has insured widespread recognition and notoriety for SETC. She has been instrumental in the development and growth, as well as the financial success of the organization. In 2018, Betsey was presented with the Suzanne M. Davis Memorial Award for distinguished service to SETC. She received the 2012 Gold Medallion Award from the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival (KCACTF) Region IV. Prior to becoming the Executive Director of SETC, Betsey taught costuming at Buffalo State College for 11 years and worked in marketing and/or development for professional theatres in Wisconsin and in Buffalo, NY. She has also performed as a commercial/film actress, and successfully produced her own play Joan of Arc: Alive!

Jose C. Simbulan
Jose C. Simbulan

Jose started playing for the SETC Professional Division auditions in 1994, and he has been at the piano for almost all of the SETC Spring and Fall auditions since then. He also plays regularly for the State Screening Auditions for the Virginia Theatre Association, Disney Parks and Cruise Line, as well as the Unified Professional Theatre Auditions (UPTA) in Memphis. Currently based in New York City, he works extensively as an audition pianist and vocal coach. As a music director and conductor, his recent credits include productions for Arena Stage, Baltimore Center Stage, Connecticut Repertory Theatre’s Nutmeg Summer Series, Shakespeare Theatre Company, National Asian Artists Project (NAAP), and Virginia Repertory Theatre. He is a proud graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University.

2018 Inductees

Don Creason
Don Creason

Don is a former President of SETC and the Florida Theatre Association and was the recipient of the 2000 Florida Theatre Association Lifetime Achievement Award. Don served on SETC’s board of directors for three years and planned the 1982 convention in Orlando. Don was the Director of the Asolo Theatre and served as Associate Dean of the Florida State University School of Theatre in the 1980s. Before he retired, he served as Executive Managing Director of Sarasota Ballet. He was a valued member of SETC for over two decades, including a stint as the Chair of the Professional Theatre Division.

Dr. N. Bennett East
Dr. N. Bennett East

Dr. East was professor and chairman of Marshall University’s Department of Theatre/Dance for 28 years and made significant contributions to SETC for three decades. He was one of the founders of the West Virginia Theatre Conference and held every elective office of that organization, including three terms as President. He was the SETC West Virginia state representative for over 10 years and in that capacity served on SETC’s Board of Directors. Bennett also chaired the SETC Auditions Committee for many years. He was instrumental in developing the operations and procedures that are still utilized at SETC’s auditions and helped to establish the original state screening audition process. He received the West Virginia Theatre Conference’s lifetime achievement award, and was a fixture at SETC conventions for over 25 years. Bennett died in 2011.

April J’Callahan Marshall

April is currently the Director of  Professional Theatre Services at SETC and has worked tirelessly on behalf of the organization since 2000. She propelled SETC into the online era by creating the organization’s first comprehensive database and online event registration system which she still oversees. Her service has helped foster improved communications by facilitating the sharing of information across all sectors of the organization. April has been the ongoing catalyst for matching professional companies with actors and offstage personnel pursuing work. Moreover, she has streamlined the Professional Screening Auditions for the Southeastern States and has helped both the SETC Professional Division and Auditions Committees set and alter policies and practices by continually sharing participant feedback. Under her the management, the Theatre Job Fair has tripled in size and evolved to include an ever growing number of full-time/year-round positions in addition to the summer-only positions which had traditionally been available via the Theatre Job Board which she helped develop and oversees.  She is also in charge of the Festivals for Community Theatre and Theatre for Youth, Ready to Design, Ready to Direct and Ready to Publish.  She also adjudicates and provides workshops regionally. In her copious spare time, April acts and directs as opportunities present themselves.

Jonathan Michaelsen

Jonathan has served the organization in multiple roles including treasurer, president elect and President of SETC. In addition to providing professional guidance to the organization, he has worked to ensure that SETC’s employees receive an employment package that remains one of the best available to individuals working in theatre. Jonathan taught and was an administrator at the University of Alabama for fifteen years, before becoming Chair of Theatre, Drama, and Contemporary Dance at Indiana University.  He serves as Artistic Producing Director of Indiana University’s professional theatre and continues to direct regularly in both the academic and professional seasons.

Julie A. Richardson

Julie is a director and AEA stage manager and works on behalf of SETC in many capacities, primarily in volunteer roles. She was the SETC Audition Director for 12 years, attended to hire talent on behalf of professional companies, and has helped build the strong stage management track at SETC. She continues to present workshops at the annual convention, adjudicates for SETC, and is an active member of SETC’s Institute of Outdoor Theatre.

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