YPT Beloved Board, January 2017
Introducing Beloved Board, a new interview series featuring YPT’s incredible Board of Directors!
YPT could not do what we do without the guidance and support of our Board of Directors. This inspiring team of educators, businesspeople and community leaders volunteer their time to lead YPT’s growth, oversee our operations and ensure that we can continue to serve Greater Washington’s young people for years to come. We are so grateful to this amazing team for their years of steadfast leadership!
YPT: How long have you been on YPT’s Board of Directors?
GG: I joined the Board in November 2013.
YPT: What prompted you to join YPT’s Board?
GG: I became aware of YPT’s work when a good friend of mine, Catherine Crum, who was on the Board at the time, invited me to one night of the New Play Festival. That year the Festival was held at the Jewish Community Center. I was really impressed with the student pieces I saw that night, as well as the incredible amount of enthusiasm they all had for the plays they had written and were seeing performed for an audience by professional actors.
YPT: What position do you hold on the Board? Why did you choose to take on that position?
GG: I am currently Chair of the Board of Directors. I was serving as Vice Chair when the prior Chair made the decision to step down. I assumed the position of Chair and was just elected to a full term. I chose to run for a full term as Chair because I would like to be a part of the continued growth of YPT and the expansion of its mission. I really enjoy working with the staff and the other Board members.
YPT: What is your proudest/most memorable moment as a member of YPT’s Board?
GG: My most memorable moments have been as an attendee at playwriting events. I vividly recall the excitement I saw and felt among the students when I visited a classroom as a prospective Board member. And the performances, in particular the Silence is Violence event from last year, have been equally inspirational.
YPT: What is the most fun part of being on the Board? The most challenging part?
GG: It’s a lot of fun to see the inner workings of the organization. In particular, the staff has an enthusiasm for and commitment to YPT that is really infectious. The most challenging part is taking responsibility for overall stewardship and guidance of the organization.
YPT: What do you hope that YPT and its Board will accomplish in the next five years?
GG: I hope we will be able to grow, both in terms of the number of students we serve and the extent to which we serve those students. I also hope we can grow our base of support for the organization. Even though YPT is well known in this area, I still think there is a potential for us to reach a bigger pool of supporters.
YPT: Why does arts education matter to you, your community and/or the young people of the DMV?
GG: I think arts are an important part of any society and an appreciation of the arts is something that we should cultivate starting at an early age. Exposure to the arts provides opportunities for and encourages self-reflection as well as self-expression.
YPT: Were you involved in creative writing or the arts growing up? If so, how did that impact your life?
GG: I was not involved in any formal programs but always enjoyed writing stories. One of my fondest memories of elementary school is a writing assignment my 6th grade teacher gave our class. He found out that one of my classmates was writing a short story so he asked all of us to write our own stories. All of us were really excited about it.
YPT: What three adjectives would you use to describe YPT?
GG: Passionate, engaged, fun!
YPT: Anything else you want to say about YPT, its students or its future?
GG: YPT is a great organization and I think it has a very bright future. I look forward to playing at least a small part in it.