The Aesthetics of Meaning:
Jewish Arts & Culture

Resumé: David Chack



  • Interim Executive Director, Kentucky Shakespeare Festival, Louisville, KY. February 2003 to present. Provided an organizational audit, oversight, and management of the oldest Shakespeare festival in the country; and responsible for an over $800,000 budget. Serves the entire state with free summer performances in Central Park (over 12,000 people) and educational performances (over 50,000 children) throughout the year. Organizing the Board and Staff into a higher functioning entity.
  • Assistant Executive Director, Jewish Community Center of Louisville, KY. 1997 to 2003. Provided oversight for all programming at the JCC, with a budget of $4.5m, serving 15-20,000 people annually in: arts, theatre, music, film, Senior Adults, singles, Jewish education and Jewish programs, marketing and design, website, cultural, children's, health, and fitness. Directly oversaw the program development and marketing and through the supervision of middle management and their department teams. Evaluated and provided quality assurance through Outcomes Measurement Tools.
  • Executive Director, Hillel Jewish Center at the University of Virginia, 1991-1996; Administrator/Chaplain of Jewish student life -- serving 1800 students and Jewish faculty. Developed a dormant student club into a respected university entity by organizing the program with the students, development/fundraising, doing university-wide events, conferences, arts and culture, Holocaust education, multi-cultural and multi-denominational programs.
  • Hillel Outreach Director, Regional Hillel Council of Greater Boston. 1984-91. Provided service and Jewish programs with students at five small colleges and planned Boston citywide programs for the Jewish students including a dating service, an Israel Independence Day Cruise in Boston Harbor, Purim in Faneuil Hall and Quincy Marketplace, and stewardship of the Jewish Student Projects funders network. Worked closely with the Development Office of Emerson College to cultivate funders for Jewish projects.
  • Adjunct Instructor, University of Virginia, Emerson College, Tufts University, Boston University, Boston area. 1983-96. Taught: Representations of the Holocaust in Theatre and Film; Myth, Folklore, and Jewish Culture; Modern Jewish Thought.
  • Virginia Film Festival, Charlottesville, Virginia, 1992-1996. Programming Jewish-related film, and wrote the article: Chosen Actor: Paul Muni and the Characterization of Scarface for the film festival journal "U.S. And Them".
  • Cultural Arts Director of Camp Grossman, Boston area. 1980-86. Oversaw all arts and directly created performing arts workshops for over 1200 children, ages 5 to 16.
  • Arts Editor and President of Genesis2. 1983-88. Wrote, edited, and solicited arts articles for Jewish journal in Boston with a national circulation. Oversaw development.
  • Performing Arts Director, Leventhal-Sidman Jewish Community Center, 1983-84.
  • Director of Centerstage Jewish Theatre; Freelance Performing Artist, Actor with Loon and Heron Educational Theatre Boston area. 1981-86.
  • Street 70 Theatre (now the award winning Roundhouse Theatre) Bethesda, Md. 1975-76. Actor and theatre arts teacher at children's arts camp.
  • Ph.D. a.b.d., Boston University in "An Integration of Jewish Studies and the Performing Arts"; advisors Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel, Classical Scholar Nahum Glatzer, and Psychologist/Folklorist Anthony Barrand. 1986-1995.
  • MA. studies in Drama, Tufts University. Focus on Holocaust plays and modern theatrical literature, 1984.
  • B.F.A., Acting, Jewish Studies minor; New York University and Circle-in-the-Square Theater, 1978.
  • Trained privately as Conservative Synagogue Cantor, Chevy Chase, Md. and Boston. 1970-76. Led Conservative services in Maryland, Boston-area, Virginia, and Kentucky: Shabbat and High Holidays; officiate at weddings, funerals, services at various synagogues.
  • Finance for Non-Financial Managers- eight-week seminar; Bellarmine College, 2003.
  • Organizational/Business Mentoring with Alan Hard from the Federal Executive Institute and the University of Virginia, Darden School of Business, 1995-6.
  • Business and Supervision Seminar by Dreiford Group, Princeton University. 1994.
  • Existential Psychology and Counseling, Agua Viva Therapeutic Associates, Cambridge, MA. 1988-90.
  • Best Jewish Film Festival Director, Jewish Louisville Film Festival 2003
  • James Macdonald Award for Interfaith Understanding and Social Justice, United Ministry at the University of Virginia, 1996.
  • William Haber Award for Programming Excellence, Intl. Hillel, for conference on Hate, Violence, and Cultural Identity, 1995.
  • Elie Wiesel Award for Jewish Arts and Culture, Intl. Hillel, for the exhibition and symposium on Jewish Life at Mr. Jefferson's University, 1993.
  • Fellowship to Coolidge Colloquium, Episcopal Divinity School and Harvard University, sponsored by CrossCurrents/Ass. Religion and Intellectual Life, 1992.
  • University Scholar and Fellowship, Boston University, 1986-91.
  • Jewish Community Center Association of North America
  • CrossCurrents - Association for Religion and Intellectual Life, New York City
  • Festival of Faiths of the Cathedral Heritage Foundation of Louisville
  • Louisville Jewish Film Festival Committee and Jewish Life and Learning Committee at the JCC in Louisville
Conferences and Consultations
  • Interpretations: Judaism and the Performing Arts, Emerson College. 1989. Conference Coordinator and Presenter.
  • Symposium on The Middle East and The Media, Emerson College. 1986. Conference Coordinator.
  • Jewish Arts Festival, Tufts University. 1984. Conference Coordinator.
  • Conference on Hate, Violence, and Cultural Identity at the University of Virginia, 1994. Project Director, featured renowned speakers, Amos Oz, William Raspberry, and Carolyn Forche. Attracted over 900 participants over three days.
  • Jewish Life at Mr. Jefferson's University, Exhibition and Symposium at the University of Virginia, February-April 1993. Project Director.
  • Louisville Jewish Film Festival Founder and Coordinator, 1999-2003.
  • Jewish Heritage Day and Exhibition, 1999. Co-coordinator. Attracted over 1,000 people, celebrating over 150 years of Jewish life in Louisville.
  • Goldstein-Leibson Annual Jewish Scholar-in-Residence,1998-2003. Founder and coordinator, Brought great scholars and teachers such as Yitz and Blu Greenberg, Everett Fox, Moshe Waldoks, Burton Visotzky, and David Novak.
  • Art Facing Hate: Colloquium and Performance, with the Louisville Orchestra and the Jewish Community Center, 2000.
  • Signature Series of Distinguished Figures, 1997-2001. Featuring Alan Dershowitz, Dr Ruth Westheimer, Norm Ornstein, Live at the 92nd St Y, etc. Project Director.
Publications and Videography
  • Does Film Have A Religion, an article in the form of a film interview between a Jewish film critic and a Catholic film critic. Co-author with Dr. Roberta Morris.
  • Seriously Funny: The Rebel Comics of the 50's and 60's, book review of American social issues comedians by Gerald Nachman. 2003.
  • Mordecai: An Early American Family, book review of early American Jewish family by Emily Bingham in the LEO, 2003.
  • Chosen Actor, an article on Paul Muni as Scarface, in U.S. and Them, booklet by the University of Virginia Festival of American Film, 1996.
  • To Seek the Peace of the City, a history of Jewish Life in Charlottesville and at the University of Virginia. 1994. Contributor and publisher.
  • Judaism and the Performing Arts, University of Virginia Continuing Education Department, 1993. Featured presenter in video archives.
  • The Last Words of Nachman, an original play in Kolot, Boston University's Jewish Literary Journal. 1991.
  • The Dignity and Importance of the Performing Arts in Judaism, Emerson College 1987. Videotaped Interview with Elie Wiesel. Shown on Boston television.

    Copyright 2004 by David Chack. All rights reserved.

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