Diane is currently a part-time graduate student at Erasmus University in Rotterdam (in the Netherlands), where she is (slowly) working towards a PhD. Her research centers on the relationship between nonprofit resident professional theaters in America and Broadway (the commercial theater center in the US), and how this relationship has evolved since the mid-twentieth century. (Those interested in this topic may want to read her 2011 HowlRound publication, In the Intersection: Partnerships in the New Play Sector, a report on a meeting of nonprofit and commercial theater producers).
Diane has lectured extensively at Erasmus University, on such topics as the creative economy & creative organizations, arts management, and the organization of art and culture. In 2015 she was visiting guest artist/lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, under the aegis of the Business School, where she designed and taught an experimental (and successful) course on aesthetics and business (called Approaching Beauty: Aesthetic Development in Work and Life). You can read about this course on Jumper.
For the six years prior to moving to Europe, Diane worked in the Performing Arts program at The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation in New York City, where she had primary responsibility for theater, dance, and technology-related strategies and grants. Before joining the Foundation, Diane served as managing director of the contemporary performing arts center On the Boards (Seattle, Washington) and executive director of a destination music festival in the resort town of Sandpoint, Idaho. Prior work also includes stints at the Sundance Film Festival, the Seattle Film Festival, Peter Gabriel’s WOMAD USA, and Bumbershoot, Seattle’s Arts Festival. Early in her career–post graduate school–she landed in Boise, Idaho. She cobbled together a life in the theater by doing bit of university lecturing in the Theatre Arts Department at Boise State University; a bit of arts marketing, teaching, and whatever else needed to be done for an extraordinary ensemble company called Idaho Theatre for Youth (which reached 100,000 kids a year in Idaho); and a bit of writing, acting, directing and producing.
As time permits she takes on outside gigs consulting with nonprofits, giving workshops on various topics, facilitating and documenting convenings, and editing academic publications (written in English by native Dutch speakers). She is also a frequent panelist, provocateur, or keynote speaker at arts conferences within and outside of the US (notable keynote addresses can be accessed on this site in the section “A Few Things I’ve Written”) and has contributed articles to several publications, including “Recreating Fine Arts Institutions,” which was published in the fall 2009 issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review, and “Rethinking Cultural Philanthropy,” which was commissioned and published in 2011 by the Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (the RSA). In 2012, she contributed essays to two books: “Creative Destruction” in Counting New Beans: Intrinsic Impact and the Value of Art (edited by Clayton Lord and published by Theatre Bay Area); and “Producer-Consumer Engagement: The Lessons of Slow Food for the Reflective Arts” in Building Communities, Not Audiences (by Doug Borwick).
She holds an MFA in Acting & Directing from University of Missouri Kansas City and a BS in Psychology and BFA in Theater from Tulane Universit in New Orleans. In 2002, she attended the inaugural Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business (a program of National Art Strategies). In recent years she has attended two Salzburg Global Seminars–once as a participant, and once as a speaker–and has participated in a week-long training/residency program with the organization Common Cause.
Diane is married to Dutchman Jaap Boter, a scholar with posts at the University of Amsterdam and the VU University Amsterdam. He holds an MA in Musicology and a PhD in Business Economics. Needless to say, they have plenty to talk about.
—Last updated August 2015