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St. Catherine University names new director of The O’Shaughnessy

St. Catherine University Vice-President for Finance and Administration and Chief Financial Officer Tom Rooney today announced that Kathleen Spehar has been appointed Director of The O’Shaughnessy on the University’s St. Paul campus.

Spehar joins St. Kate’s from St. Paul’s History Theatre, where she has served as managing director since 2007. In that leadership role, she was responsible for strategic partnerships involving multiple community organizations and has led audience development and fundraising initiatives to reduce an existing deficit as part of a turnaround plan.

She served as managing director of Mu Performing Arts where she helped develop the first Asian American Play Festival in Minnesota that increased ticket sales and attracted new donations.

She has also been a visiting assistant professor at the College of Visual Arts, Dance and Theatre at Florida State University, Tallahassee, and has served as an adjunct professor and assistant managing director for the University of Minnesota’s Department of Theatre Arts and Dance.  

Spehar is a former board member of Minnesota Citizens for the Arts, and has served as an advisor or board member for a variety of arts organizations. She holds a bachelor’s degree in music from Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, and a master’s of liberal studies from the University of Minnesota.

“Kathleen’s unique combination of arts management leadership and academic credentials make her an ideal choice to lead The O’Shaughnessy,” said Rooney. “As the leader of The O’Shaughnessy, she will fill a key role guiding strategic planning and programming for our unique arts and academic space while helping advance the St. Catherine mission.”

About The O’Shaughnessy

Opened in 1970, The O’Shaughnessy holds a unique place in the cultural landscape of the Twin Cities as an organization that both showcases and presents the arts, and is a center of curricular activity on St. Catherine University’s main campus.

Over the past 40 years, The O’Shaughnessy has welcomed a variety of performance artists and luminaries—from Maya Angelou to Brandie Carlile to Lily Tomlin.  Prior to the construction of music auditoriums in Minneapolis and St. Paul, the hall was the home for the Minnesota Orchestra, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Schubert Club.

 Over the past ten years, there have been renovations to The O’Shaughnessy valued at more than $1 million, including state of the art sound and lighting systems, main floor seating refurbishment, disability accommodations, renovated dressing rooms and a refurbished artists’ green room.

For more information, visit The O’Shaughnessy’s website or call 651-690-6700.

Aug. 23, 2011 by Julie Michener

See also: Arts