Samuel Babbitt, president of the board of directors of The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre (The Gamm), announces the resignation of Executive Director Yvonne Seggerman effective January 1, 2013.
Over nine years serving first as managing director (2003-2008) and then as executive director (2009-2012), Seggerman has led the non-profit theater company through a period of phenomenal growth and organizational stability. At her request, the board of directors granted Seggerman a six-month sabbatical on July 1 of this year, allowing her the opportunity to work on independent projects for professional and personal development. After much deliberation, Seggerman has decided that due to personal considerations, it is the right time for her to move on from the company at the conclusion of her sabbatical.
"I have loved every minute of my nine and a half years at The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre and feel honored and blessed to have worked with the hands-down best board of directors and Rhode Island's most talented artists and staff. I am very proud of the work Tony Estrella and I and all of those at The Gamm have accomplished together," Seggerman said. "I love leaving a place in better condition than it was when I found it! At the moment though, I need to be able to devote more time to my family. It seems that as The Gamm approaches its next five-year strategic plan, new leadership might be a really great thing: a fresh perspective, and someone with the ability to put in the extra hours and single-minded energy required for the next steps."
During Seggerman's tenure, The Gamm grew from just two full-time employees to over 60 combined artists, administrative personnel, and other workers on the payroll. In addition, the annual budget increased from $200,000 to over $1.2 million. Season tickets holders rose from 94 to over 2,100, with over 34,000 patrons visiting the downtown Pawtucket theater annually.
"Yvonne has been instrumental in creating from the ground up a first-rate business model and administrative structure to undergird our theater and educational programs. Her energy, devotion and imagination, let alone her skills as an administrator, have been a major factor in our success", said Babbitt, who was president of the board when Seggerman was hired.
Artistic Director Tony Estrella, who worked side-by-side with Seggerman during the entirety of her tenure, offered his profound respect and gratitude.
"While I am very happy for Yvonne as she enters the next phase of her professional life, which I'm sure will bring her even more success than she has already achieved, I will miss her dearly as my partner and the key ingredient in the extraordinary 10 seasons that The Gamm has put together since moving to Pawtucket. Her dedication to the mission and vision for the company has been second to none, and her leadership and business acumen have made the difference in turning The Gamm from a quality local arts maker to a widely respected, thriving, regional institution," Estrella said, adding, "Yes, she leaves huge shoes to fill but, thanks to her hard work, we are capable of doing so and continuing to move forward."
Former Board President and current Acting Executive Director David M. Wax will continue in that position as the board searches for Seggerman's replacement.