Mary M. Briggs has been with the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra for eight years, first as Executive Director, and for the past five years as President and CEO. Under her guidance, the Orchestra has grown to be one of the area's leading cultural organizations.
Nationally recognized, this past year Briggs was named Vice-President of the Level Five Orchestras in the National League of American Orchestras, was selected to attend the Sphinx Medals of Excellence event at the United States Supreme Court, and invited to attend Carnegie Hall Youth Program training.
Locally, Briggs serves as Chairman of the Advisory Board of Women in Philanthropy, is a member of the Hilton Head Rotary, the Greater Island Council, the Community Visions Board of Directors, the Arts and Cultural Council of Hilton Head, and the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra Chorus, often serving as chairman and co-chairs of various committees.
Steve and his wife Sandy West moved to Hilton Head full time six years ago from Columbus Ohio. However, like many people they had been coming to the island for many years.
In Columbus, Steve led the Columbus office of Lee Hecht Harrison, an international career management firm. He spent over 25 years with LHH in Cincinnati, Indianapolis and Columbus.
Presently, Steve is a senior consultant with Lighthouse Consulting, LLC, a Human Resources consulting firm, specializing in executive coaching and organizational/team/leadership development, which Sandy and he started in 2007.
Steve received a BA from Muskingum College in New Concord, Ohio, and a Masters of Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry degree in Organizational Behavior from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. He is a retired ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church, USA.
His love of the performing arts began at Muskingum and continues today. He is excited about helping the Lean Ensemble Theatre become a well-known regional (and beyond) theatre company.
Myla Lerner is a Tony Award winning Broadway Producer- (Pippin- Best Musical Revival 2013).
Other notable productions in the past decade include: What the Constitution Means to Me, The Heidi Chronicles, If/Then, Lady Day, Glengarry Glen Ross, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, End of the Rainbow, Lombardi and HAIR.
For the past forty years she has actively supported the Arts and Philanthropic causes in New York City, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. Since moving to Hilton Head she has continued to do so. She is currently a trustee with the National Council for the American Theatre with Theatre Communications Group.
She is married to Larry Kramer, former President and Publisher of USA Today.
Joe is President & CEO of Wolverine Development Corporation in East Lansing, Michigan and past board president of Michigan State University's Wharton Center for Performing Arts.
A graduate of Northwestern and Columbia Universities, he has closely followed and engaged the Chicago and New York theater scenes for decades.
Joe and Jeanne Maguire reside in Palmetto Dunes.
As a writer and theater habitué, Carolyn finds that going to a fine play is like reading a good book. When the curtain rises, we escape into a new world; after the curtain falls, we leave thinking about the world we live in in a new way.
Carolyn writes about the arts, travel, recreation, personalities, business and social issues for print (articles and books) and online publications. Her past work includes TV video production, scriptwriting, editorial and photo editing, public relations, grant writing, and organizational development.
Today as a development editor, Carolyn assists authors with characterization, narrative flow, plot, style, and marketing.
Inner Circle Chairperson
Cathy and her husband Michael moved to Hilton Head full time in 2008 after spending time in Atlanta, Chicago, and 18 years in Boston.
During her working career, Cathy taught in secondary and post-secondary schools, worked in Marketing for Burroughs/Unisys, and was the Instructional Development/Consulting Manager for Information Mapping, Inc. During her years in Boston, she was active in several neighborhood groups and worked on the Groundwater Development project for the South End area.
Since moving to HHI, Cathy’s been involved with Literacy Volunteers of the Lowcountry, and has served on the boards of Bear Creek Golf Club and also its Women’s Golf Association. She’s been a member of the LET Inner Circle for the last four years, serving as its chair for the past two.
Cathy has a BA and MA from the University of South Florida, and an Ed.S. from Georgia State University.
After having performed in high school productions, her acting “career” was on hold until she participated in the Lean Ensemble Theater’s benefit production of Love, Loss and What I Wore. She’s happy to have met Myla Lerner through a mutual friend, and is glad that one thing led to another.
Almost all of Lisa’s professional life was finance oriented. With an undergraduate degree in international business she joined Continental Bank in Chicago in their international auditing department. After getting an MBA from Northwestern University she moved to multinational lending for the remainder of her time with Continental. She was a senior research analyst with Wagner Investment Management in Denver.
During this time she also served in many capacities with the non-profits, The Women’s Foundation of Colorado (investment chair and board chair), Judi’s House, Project Pave and numerous school and church organizations.
Most recently, Lisa served on the Arts and Cultural Strategic Planning Committee for the Town of Hilton Head. She continues to be involved in the implementation of the recommendations that were approved by the Town Council.
The culmination of these experiences led to being the Executive Director of Colorado Ballet for close to four years during a time of numerous challenges. It made all the difference in understanding a performing arts organization’s finances and options and cementing her support for the arts in the community and schools.
Lisa and her husband, Bill, split their time between Denver and Hilton Head with the tilt in time to Hilton Head.
Bo is a full time resident of Hilton Head, to where he and his wife Penny moved in 2001, after vacationing here almost every year since 1971.
The quality of the music and theater arts in Hilton Head was a significant motivator in this move. They were thrilled with the founding of LEAN Ensemble, and became immediate subscribers and supporters.
Bo is a Native of Louisville, KY, with a BA degree in Economics from Washington & Lee University. He and Penny were longtime patrons and supporters of Actors Theatre of Louisville and the Louisville Orchestra
He spent 35 years in the thrift and consumer banking industry as an executive officer and board member, and concluded his career as a commercial call and loan officer for Fifth Third Bank. He was active in residential and commercial real estate financing and development. He was involved with various partnerships with city, county, and Kentucky Housing Corporation in development of affordable housing and properties qualifying for low income housing tax credits as part of the regeneration and renewal of inner-city areas. He served on the board of several non-profit corporations active in these areas.
Bo and Penny live in Moss Creek. They have been regular patrons and supporters of the theater and orchestra, and of the Hilton Head Choral Society, where Bo has served as board member and president.
Tim and his wife Mona moved full-time to Hilton Head Island in 2012 and immediately became involved in many civic and cultural activities. Tim has been a Project Impact mentor in the public schools since 2012. He is a past president of the VanLandingham Rotary Club and a Board member. He served two terms on the Board of the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra and two years as Board Chair. He has served on the Town’s Venue Committee and was a participant in the Visioning process. He is a member of the Greater Island Council.
His interest in theater began with writing and acting in a sixth-grade play. He has seen more than 600 plays and musicals (and has the playbills to prove it!). At Harvard, he was President of the Dudley House Drama Society and acted, directed and produced a number of plays.
Tim had a thirty-five year career in management consulting with three major international consulting firms. At his last firm, Mercer, he was Midwest Region Head, a world-wide partner, and a member of both the firm’s U.S. Board of Directors and Global Leadership Group. He served on the Executive Committee of the Cleveland Opera and The Cleveland Play House. He was a volunteer with the Arts & Business Council of Chicago where he and another retired consultant created a Board Development Consulting practice.
A Boston native, Tim and Mona have lived in Cleveland, Detroit and Chicago. He has an AB in Government from Harvard College. He is excited about the future of Lean Ensemble Theater!
Founding Artistic & Executive Director
Blake White founded Lean Ensemble Theater in the winter of 2015 as a celebration of theatre-- the artists that create it as well the patrons who support it. Directing credits for LET include Barefoot in the Park, A Doll’s House Part 2, Good People, The Clean House, Tribes, Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike, The Glass Menagerie, and God of Carnage. On stage, Blake has appeared in Who Am I This Time?,The Importance of Being Earnest, The Underpants and The Waverly Gallery.
Elsewhere as a director, Blake has staged productions of Shear Madness (Southeastern Summer Theatre Institute), All My Sons (The Warehouse Theatre), The Lonesome West (Brown County Playhouse), The Glass Menagerie, Boeing Boeing (The Shuler Theater), Matt and Ben, The Pavilion, The Savannah Disputation, The Lady With All the Answers and Venus in Fur (South Carolina Repertory Company).
As an actor, he has been seen on the stages of Actors Theatre of Louisville, Actors Workshop of Boston, The Shuler Theater, Brown County Playhouse, South Carolina Repertory Company, Cider Mill Playhouse, among others, as well as several off- and off-off and not close to broadway companies. Blake has also provided spoken word narration in concerts with the Hilton Head Choral Society and the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra.
Blake is a member of the Stage Directors & Choreographers Society as well as the boards of the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, Lean Ensemble Theater and the South Carolina Theatre Association, where he chairs the professional division.
2019/20 season: The Humans, Death of a Streetcar Named Virginia Woolf.
Randie and her husband, Michael, a retired attorney, moved to Bluffton full time three years ago from Chicago. They had traveled back and forth between both their homes for many years, and were delighted to end up in this piece of paradise.
Randie was a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), and spent most of her career working with adolescents and families in many different settings. She moved into the business aspect of the profession, and did Healthcare Marketing and later became Director of Behavior Health for a large Community Hospital in the Chicago area.
Randie has a BS in Psychology from Barat College in Lake Forest, Il and an MSW from Loyola University in Chicago.
Once moving to Bluffton, she served on the Inaugural Committee to form the Belfair Charitable Fund.
Randie and her husband moved from the suburbs to downtown Chicago where they spent 20 years prior to moving to the Lowcountry. They moved into the city to be able to enjoy all the wonderful things the city had to offer, such as Theater, The Chicago Symphony and Steppenwolf Theater. She was delighted to discover Lean Ensemble Theater, and to “lean in” to bring innovative theater to the Lowcountry.