Staff & Leadership
John McEwen has served as the Executive Director of New Jersey Theatre Alliance since 2001.
Prior to the Alliance, John served as Vice President for Development of the New Jersey Network Foundation where he was responsible for providing the leadership for an annual fund goal of more than $7 million in support of NJN Public Television and Radio’s programs and services. Prior to joining NJN, John served as the Director of Development for Paper Mill Playhouse where he oversaw all fundraising activities, long-range planning, and board development. John provided the leadership for Paper Mill’s successful $10 million capital campaign.
John developed the Alliance's Cultural Access Network Project in 1992, for which he received the inaugural Leadership Award in Access from The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and The Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. John serves as a trustee of ArtPRIDE NJ and New Jersey Fund for the Blind. John has served as an adjunct professor in arts management at Seton Hall University, Drew University, and New York University.
John 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.
John is a graduate of Leadership/New Jersey and was selected as one of 50 nonprofit arts leaders to participate in the Executive Program for Nonprofit Arts Leaders at Stanford University, a partnership of Stanford and National Arts Strategies.
When John is not attending the theatre, he enjoys cooking, collecting glass art, and anything to do with the water—boating, sun bathing, swimming.
Director of Programs and Services, ADA Coordinator
Robert is a life-long resident of New Jersey, a spectacular cook and a seasoned veteran in the arts community. Since 2005, Robert has served as Director of Programs and Services/ADA Coordinator at the Alliance.
Previously, Robert served as General Manager for the 12 Miles West Theatre Company. He called Playwrights Theatre home from 1998 to 2004 and in his professional career has worn many hats as producer, actor, director, and teaching artist. He has also served on the faculty of New Jersey School of Dramatic Arts in Bloomfield.
Robert recently served as the Chair of the Program Committee for the Association of Performing Arts Service Organizations (APASO) conference which took place in Philadelphia. Robert was the recipient of the 2014 Inaugural LEAD Community Asset Award presented by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. This Award recognizes the achievements of those who continually demonstrate success with access initiatives, improving accessibility in their organization, city, state, or region.
As a performer, he has worked in many of the Alliance’s member theatres including 12 Miles West, The Bickford Theatre, Luna Stage Company, Playwrights Theatre, and The Growing Stage: The Children’s Theatre of NJ. Carr is a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, and is a proud member of Actors Equity Association.
Robert is husband to Stephanie and father to Sabrina.
Development and Communications Director
Before joining the Alliance in 2014, Ruth worked in communications and project management in the executive offices at Columbia University, where she contributed to the success of a $6.1B campaign, the first campus expansion in 150 years, and the branding of Columbia as the premier global university.
Ruth has also worked as an independent consultant for a variety of organizations including large foundations, small businesses, and non-profit ventures, conducting market research and formulating communications strategies.
Her publications include over 25 cover and feature stories for architectural trade magazines; the online novel firstname.lastname@example.org, published in 2002 by classicnovels.com; Otsu and Other Poems, self-published in 2006; Eating Her Wedding Dress: An Anthology of Clothing Poems, which she co-edited and was published by Ragged Sky Press in 2009; and Blanket Stories, a poetry anthology published by Ragged Sky in 2014, which she co-edited and which is based on a work of collaborative art by artist Richard Jochum.
Ruth holds an MS in strategic communications from Columbia University, an MA in English from New York University, and a BA summa cum laude from St. John’s University. She is a trustee of the Reeves-Reed Arboretum in Summit, NJ, and was recipient of the 2010 Cynthia Carter Memorial Cup granted by US Fencing to the top-ranked women’s epeeist over 40.
Manager of Digital Communications and Marketing
Laurice grew up in Nebraska and Iowa. She moved to NYC to attend the American Musical Theatre and Dramatic Academy in 1999 and has called New Jersey home since 2004.
She has served in many roles at regional theatres across the country. From company manager to scenic artist she has been lucky enough to work with some of the countries leading theatres, including Goodspeed Opera House, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Roundabout Theatre Company and Jujamcyn Theatres.
As a choreographer she has worked with many school show choirs, served on faculty at Iowa Central Community College, and served as dance captain on numerous shows.
Prior to joining the Alliance, Laurice was the Outreach Coordinator and Business administrator for the Unitarian Universalist Legislative Ministry of New Jersey, a liberal religious non-profit working for a more just and equitable New Jersey. In the not so near future, she plans to get her Masters in Divinity and Social Change at the Starr King School for the Ministry.
In her free time she loves to spend time outdoors with and cooking for her husband, Markus, and son, Aidan. Laurice is an advocate, public speaker, and prevention educator in the areas of sexual and domestic violence. She is an active member of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Montclair as a singer, religious educator, communications consultant, and Minister of Hugs.
Managing Director, Paper Mill Playhouse
Former President & CEO, Young Audiences New Jersey & Eastern Pennsylvania
Artistic Director, Premiere Stages
Vice President of Real Estate, Bed, Bath & Beyond
Managing Director, Two River Theater
Artistic Advisor, Passage Theatre
Business Manager, Chatham Day School
Joseph P. Benincasa
President & CEO, The Actors Fund
Senior Vice President – NJ Market Manager, Bank of America
Artistic Director, Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre
Founder, Pushcart Players
Artistic Director, Bickford Theatre
Laura J. Hay
Principal, KPMG Insurance
Carol A. Herbert
Council Member, New Jersey State Council on the Arts
General Manager, McCarter Theatre Center
Managing Director, The Growing Stage: The Children’s Theatre of New Jersey
Michael Schnoering, FAIA
Partner, Mills + Schnoering Architects, LLC
Artistic Director, East Lynne Theater Company
Natalie Watson, Esq.
Partner, McCarter & English