Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Initiative

Photo by Roger Mastronianni. Pictured: Members of the TCG's Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Initiative leading a session at the 2015 TCG National Conference: Game Change.

One of TCG's long-standing Core Values is Diversity: The diversity of the theatre community—combined with its interdependence—makes it strong, healthy and robust. TCG is committed to supporting the plurality of aesthetic, perspective, race/ethnicity, class, gender,  sexual orientation, disability, age, mission, as well as organizational size and structure.
TCG's strategic plan includes a multi-year, six-point Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Initiative (EDII) to transform the national theatre field into a more equitable, inclusive and diverse community. While these efforts are currently focused on racial and cultural diversity, TCG takes an intersectional approach to identity and equity that infuses all of our programming.
The Initiative's six points are divided into the following two areas of focus, Establishing a Baseline and Action-Oriented Programming. All three points of Establishing a Baseline are funded through support from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.

Establishing a Baseline:

Action-Oriented Programming:

  • Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Institute –TCG launched a national cohort of over 20 TCG Member Theatres, including TCG, to create and execute action plans around diversity and inclusion, kicking-off as a Pre-Conference at the 2013 National Conference. The Institute will continue to hold smaller training programs and convenings on cultural awareness, managing diversity and activating change, with additional cohorts to launch in the near future. This intensive approach not only creates a climate within each individual theatre whereby institutional change is more likely to take hold, but it also adds significantly to the collective impact and national momentum of diversity and inclusion efforts already taking place. In 2016, TCG will launched two new Institute cohorts with support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
    SPARK Leadership Program – Building on the Young Leaders of Color (YLC) program, SPARK will create a more diverse theatre landscape by supporting the professional development of exceptional leaders of color who aim to take on executive leadership positions at U.S. not-for-profit theatres. From 2014-15, SPARK provided 10 rising leaders of color with the opportunity to participate in a year-long curriculum of professional development through a partnership with the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL). The SPARK Leadership program was supported by American Express and the Joyce Foundation. In 2016, TCG launched the Rising Leaders of Color (RLC) program, which expands and re-envisions the YLC program to nurture and support early-career leaders of color in all areas of theatre. Together, the SPARK and RLC programs will form an intergenerational network of theatre professionals who will change the face of the theatre field.
    Nurture Theatres of Color – TCG will develop programming to address capacity-building amongst culturally-specific theatres, and raise the awareness of the importance of these theatres around the country. TCG has convened leaders of theatres of color at TCG’s National Conference and Fall Forum on Governance to identify their unique needs and challenges.

The Initiative began with the 2012 TCG Fall Forum on Governance: Leading the Charge, and continued through the Diversity & Inclusion arc at 2013 TCG National Conference: Learn Do Teach. At that Conference, TCG also launched the Leading the Charge Diversity & Inclusion Institute and, with salon curator and Young Leader of Color Jacqueline E. Lawton, started the Diversity & Inclusion blog salon on the TCG Circle. This work continued at the 2013 TCG Fall Forum on Governance: Investing in Vitality, and was a central aspect of the 2014 and 2015 TCG National Conferences.

To learn more about TCG's Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Initiative, contact Elena Chang.

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