Actors’ Equity has announced the selection of Ralph Remington as Western regional director/assistant executive director, effective January 2014. Remington succeeds Mary Lou Westerfield, who steps down from the post at the end of the year.
Remington will oversee the operations, collective bargaining, and contract administration in 14 states (from Texas to Washington, including Alaska and Hawaii) and supervise a staff of 22. Under the leadership of Executive Director Mary McColl, Remington will be part of the executive team and will work alongside Steve DiPaola, assistant executive director of finance and administration; Tom Carpenter, Eastern regional director/assistant executive director and general counsel; and Sean Taylor, Central regional director/assistant executive director.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Ralph Remington to the Equity family as part of the leadership team,” said McColl. “He has a proven track record of success as a strategic planner and is a champion of cultural inclusiveness. His multifaceted career and varied experience provides the union with a rare inside-out view of our industry.” McColl continued, “His expertise and relationships will not only serve the theatrical community in the Western region, but our membership nationwide.”
Remington currently serves as the director for theater and musical theater at the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), a position he has held since 2010. He is responsible for oversight and administration of the division’s grant making processes and development of partnerships to advance the theater industry as a whole.
Remington founded the Minneapolis-based Pillsbury House Theatre, an Equity theater, in 1992. Under his leadership, the company began a longstanding policy of non-traditional casting and diversity in its hiring practices (both onstage and backstage). As an Equity member, Remington has appeared in dozens of shows. He has also directed numerous productions, including 14 world premieres. Under Pillsbury House, Remington formed the community youth outreach program, “Chicago Avenue Project,” helping children create and perform in plays based on their own life experiences. The program was awarded the 2005 “Coming Up Taller” award, presented at the White House by First Lady Laura Bush.
Remington was a Minneapolis city council member from 2006-2009. He previously served as executive director of the Media Artists Resource Center (MARC) in St. Paul, and led a merger between MARC and the Independent Filmmaker Project. He served as artistic associate and director of community engagement for Arena Stage in Washington, D.C. A Philadelphia native, Remington is a graduate of Howard University (B.F.A., Drama).