New Jersey Stage

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

New Jersey Theatre Alliance welcomes Etta Rudolf Denk of Bank of America and June Ballinger of Passage Theatre Company to the Board of Trustees

(West Orange, NJ) -- The New Jersey Theatre Alliance (NJTA), the service organization for the state's professional theatres, welcomes community leaders Etta Rudolf Denk of Bank of America, and June Ballinger of Passage Theatre Company in Trenton to their Board of Trustees.

Etta Rudolf Denk is the Senior Vice President – NJ Market Manager; Corporate Social Responsibility / Market President Team of Bank of America New Jersey.  She joined Bank of America as the Market Manager in New Jersey in 2008 and is responsible for the alignment and delivery of Bank of America's marketing and charitable resources to meet constituent and community needs across New Jersey.  She leads the planning and execution of all local sponsorship, philanthropic, community and business development initiatives.

As an active champion for meaningful change, Etta's leadership and advocacy for public and private partnerships has positively impacted many New Jersey communities. Etta's accomplishments have been widely recognized and celebrated throughout her career.  Notable awards include the Percy B. Menagh Award from the American Institute of Banking; the Distinguished Service Award from New Jersey Community Capital; and the Center for Non-Profit Corporations Chairperson's Award.

Prior to joining Bank of America, Etta worked for nearly 25 years in the banking / insurance industry most recently with JPMorgan Chase where she was responsible for corporate philanthropy, sponsorship and community development activities.

A graduate of Rutgers Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Etta received a BA in Urban Studies.

She is a resident of Maplewood, and is active in numerous organizations including The Council of New Jersey Grantmakers, the Center for Non-Profit Corporations, the Housing & Community Development Network of New Jersey, the Bergen County Workforce Investment Board and Paterson Restoration Corporation.  In 2004, she was appointed by former Governor Jim McGreevey to the Faith Based Advisory Commission.

"For nearly three decades, the New Jersey Theatre Alliance has served as an incredible resource for theatre professionals and enthusiasts alike," said Denk.  "I'm honored to be a part of such an impactful organization, and look forward to helping further their mission in the years ahead."

June Ballinger joined Passage Theatre Company in 1995, and assumed her current role as Executive Artistic Director in 1996. Dedicated to developing new plays for the American theatre, June Ballinger has introduced New Jersey audiences to premiere works by emerging and established writers including William Mastrosimone, Leslie Ayvazian, Yusef Komunykaa, Russell Davis, David Lee White, and more. Prior to becoming a producer, she performed in many new works at theatres nationwide such as New York's Ensemble Studio Theatre, The Actors Theatre of Louisville, Primary Stages, The Chelsea Theatre Center, The Kennedy Center, and the original Broadway cast of Pack of Lies starring Rosemary Harris. She began her career as a founding ensemble member of the Magic Carpet Play Company in San Francisco.

During her tenure at Passage, June has worked to promote cultural tourism, contributing to Trenton's resurgence by continuing the theatre's emphasis on new work and keeping the arts relevant to the daily lives of its diverse community. She is a member of New York 's Ensemble Studio Theatre, and the Mercer County Chamber of Commerce.  June is a 2003 Fellow of Leadership Trenton, and lives in Trenton with her family.

"Passage has been a member of the Theatre Alliance for 14 years, so I've seen first hand how the organization supports and nurtures New Jersey's professional theatres, and the theatre-going community," says Ballinger.  "I am thrilled to join the board because I believe so strongly in the Alliance's mission.  New Jersey professional theatres are so fortunate to be part of such a generous, forward-thinking, supportive organization."

Founded in 1981, the New Jersey Theatre Alliance is the only statewide organization for professional, not-for-profit theatre companies in the United States, and is a leader in developing model programs that foster collaboration, cooperation and audience development. It provides its member theatres and arts patrons a wide range of supportive services and programs. The Alliance assists member theatres in their growth and development, as well as the promotion of their programs, helping them reach their full potential. For arts patrons, the Alliance is able to provide a variety of services to enhance their theatre-going experience.

John McEwen, Executive Director of the Theatre Alliance says: "We are delighted to add the expertise, energy and unique perspectives that Etta and June bring to our board as the New Jersey Theatre Alliance explores exciting new ways to advance its mission in support of professional theatre and quality of life in New Jersey."

Funding for the New Jersey Theatre Alliance, a not-for-profit organization, is provided in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as contributions from foundations, corporations, businesses and individuals.  United is the official airline of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance.