John McEwen of NJ Theatre Alliance Receives Outstanding Professional Fundraiser Award
(Morristown, NJ) On June 14th, 2018, at Pines Manor in Edison, NJ, John McEwen, Executive Director of New Jersey Theatre Alliance (“the Alliance”) will receive The Robert J. Smythe Award for Outstanding Professional Fundraiser from the New Jersey chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (“AFP-NJ”). Since 1981, AFP-NJ’s Excellence in Philanthropy Awards have recognized the achievements of some of the most notable citizens and organizations in the State who have dedicated their efforts toward making New Jersey a better place to live. Information on the ceremony and tickets are available at afp-nj.org or by calling (732) 279-4258.
“I am grateful and humbled to be recognized by my peers for doing a job that gives me great joy,” said McEwen. “It allows me to use my skills and resources to make sure theatre and the arts remain vital to our communities, and available and accessible for everyone in New Jersey.”
Connie Alexis-Laona, Alliance board member and philanthropy consultant, and Nina Stack, President of the Council of New Jersey Grantmakers, nominated McEwen for the honor. “It was my pleasure to nominate John as AFP-NJ's Outstanding Professional Fundraiser,” said Alexis-Laona. “As an arts leader who believes in the power of philanthropy, John's fundraising and community-building efforts have benefitted the New Jersey arts community for many decades.”
Chris Daggett, President and CEO of The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, one of New Jersey’s largest arts funders, supported McEwen’s nomination. “John is not only an exceptional fundraiser, but also an effective collaborator, sharing his expertise in nonprofit management and his enthusiasm for excellent, inclusive theatre experiences with fellow grantees and with New Jersey audiences,” said Daggett.
McEwen has served as the Executive Director of the Alliance since 2001. Prior to the Alliance, he served as Vice President for Development of the New Jersey Network (“NJN”) Foundation. Prior to NJN, McEwen served as the Director of Development for Paper Mill Playhouse where he oversaw all fundraising activities, long-range planning, and board development, and provided the leadership for Paper Mill’s successful Project Completion capital campaign.
In 1992, McEwen developed the nationally recognized Cultural Access Network Project, a program of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and New Jersey Theatre Alliance, for which he received the inaugural Leadership Award in Access from The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation. McEwen serves as a trustee of ArtPride NJ, Center for Non-Profits, and Fund for the New Jersey Blind, and has served as an adjunct professor in arts management at Seton Hall University, Drew University, and New York University. He has consulted numerous organizations on board development, long-range planning, fundraising, and cultural access. He received a BA from Montclair State University and an MA from New York University.