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Victory Gardens ED leaving amid rising tensions
2020-06-09

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Victory Gardens Theater Executive Director Erica Daniels—who was also named executive artistic director just last month—shared her decision with the board to leave the company

This development followed weeks of escalating frustration and anger expressed by artists and others about the board's process and decision to restructure the Victory Garden's leadership team.

"Early last week, after listening to the voices of the artists, staff and others in the artistic community who expressed disagreement and growing outrage with decisions by the board after Chay Yew resigned, I had decided to cede the artistic director role. Unfortunately, the vitriol has really escalated in recent days, which included many hurtful and personal accusations and misstatements about me. I care too much about Victory Gardens and its mission to let this continue, and therefore I have decided to leave the Theater," said Daniels in a statement. " I have always been committed to the mission and values of Victory Gardens and leave here very proud of the outstanding work that Chay and I did together."

Victory Gardens had announced last month that, with the pending departure of Artistic Director Chay Yew, it would restructure and create a more expansive leadership team. That team was to be led by Daniels serving in the dual role of executive and artistic directors, along with an associate artistic director, director of education and human resources, and general manager, with the goal of at least 50 percent diversity among the roles.

Board Chair Steve Miller is also stepping down from his post, effective immediately, saying, "I regret that a more transparent process did not occur. I should have listened more to members of the community, as well as to board members who attempted to guide a more equitable and inclusive process." Miller plans to remain as a member of the board.


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