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McCallum Theater CEO to Retire at End of Season

Jaffa King

McCallum Theater CEO to Retire at End of Season

CREATED Jan. 16, 2012

PALM DESERT - Bill Powers, Chairman of the McCallum Theatre Board of Trustees, announced Monday that Ted Giatas will retire as President and CEO of McCallum Theatre at the end of this season.

Mitch Gershenfeld, McCallum Theatre’s Director of Presentations and Theater Operations, will succeed Giatas as President and CEO. 

Powers praised Giatas saying that when he was appointed President and CEO in 1999, McCallum Theatre was $7.5 million in debt and was facing closure.  “Under Giatas’ leadership McCallum Theatre retired its debt, expanded its endowment fund from $1.25 million to $12 million and, except for the “9/11” season, has produced balanced budgets each year during his twelve year tenure.”

Mr. Powers said, “Ted has done an exceptional job throughout the years both in terms of managing the Theatre and developing a solid donor base of support as well insuring financial stability into the future.  The McCallum board of trustees is most grateful for Ted’s many accomplishments and tireless service.”

Giatas stated, “There is a time to take stock in one’s professional and personal endeavors and look ahead, and I believe this is the time for me to set a new course in my life.  After twelve years, I also believe that it is time for fresh leadership at the helm of the McCallum.  Without question, Mitch Gershenfeld is the clear choice to succeed me in leading the Theatre in these challenging times and I wish Mitch much success in his new role.”

“I am honored to be chosen to succeed Ted Giatas as President and CEO of the McCallum Theatre,” said Mr. Gershenfeld. “Ted’s leadership has placed the McCallum on firm ground, both financially and artistically. I want to continue Ted’s legacy and ensure the McCallum Theatre remains a vital and energetic resource for the arts and arts education in our community.”

Mitch Gershenfeld has been Director of Presentations and Theater Operations at the McCallum Theatre since 2000. He has served as President and CEO of the East County Performing Arts Center in El Cajon, Executive Director of the Paramount Theater in Denver, and Music Producer for the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. He served on the faculties of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Denver and Goucher College. Mitch has a Bachelor of Music degree from Philadelphia College of Performing Arts and a Master of Music degree from University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The McCallum Theatre is internationally recognized as one of the top revenue grossing theaters in the world, and over the past decade has annually ranked first or second in gross ticket sales in the first quarter of each year in the State of California.