South Dakota Shakespeare Festival 2019 Season

Board of Directors

Text to come

Carol Geu, Vice President

University of South Dakota Art Department

Carol Geu is a lecturer for the Art Department at the University of South Dakota, teaching online art history courses and faculty led programs to Europe. She was born and raised in southeast Nebraska. Geu received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with majors in painting and art history and a minor in business administration and a Master of Fine Arts degree in painting from the University of South Dakota. She continues to be a student of art history, art criticism, and philosophy. Before moving to South Dakota, Geu worked as a graphic designer for newspapers, advertising agencies, and educational institutions in Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Washington, D.C. and also had the pleasure of serving as an intern for the curator of works on paper at the Corcoran Art Gallery in Washington, D.C. In her free time Geu enjoys supporting the arts, reading, gardening, and spending time with her family.

Danielle Heeren, Interim Secretary

University of South Dakota, Art and Theatre Departments

Danielle Heeren is a South Dakota native from Salem and Sioux Falls. A theatre kid from early on, she studied Acting at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy, New York campus, and completed her BFA with an Acting Specialization at the University of South Dakota. Following graduation, she moved back to New York City where she performed in regional and Off-Off-Broadway theatre in New York and Ohio. While there, she also worked in Hospitality, gaining skills and experience in event planning, expense and budget management, personnel training, and clerical support, while also developing her love for sewing and handcrafts. Danielle returned home to South Dakota in late 2015 where she now serves as Senior Secretary for the Art and Theatre Departments at USD, and lives with her partner of 12 years Joshua Rowland. She is delighted and honored to join the Board of SD Shakes, and looks forward to supporting theatre arts in Vermillion!

Text to come

Evelyn Schlenker, Director

University of South Dakota, Sanford School of Medicine

For over 36 years Evelyn taught and conducted research as a Professor in the Sanford School of Medicine teaching a variety of students including undergraduates, graduate, medical students and residents.  Evelyn serves as a Board member and Secretary on the Clay County Historical Commission, on the Board of the Friends of the W. H. Over Museum, where she also volunteers in museum cataloging and exhibit design, and volunteers at the Vermillion Food Pantry. Evelyn serves as secretary and Board member of the Vermillion Community Theatre which puts on children’s workshops and plays during the summer and, more recently, a dinner theater during the winter to early spring. In that context she helps with fundraising and the production of costumes and sets as well as being on stage. Finally, Evelyn has published three books documenting stained glass windows and houses owned by a physician who practiced medicine in Vermillion during the first half of the 20th century.

Betty Smith, Director

University of South Dakota, Political Science

Elizabeth "Betty" Smith recently retired from the University of South Dakota after a career teaching American Politics and Public Administration, and serving as Associate Director of the Farber Center for Civic Leadership. She brings to the Board a passion for Shakespeare and expertise in nonprofit budgeting, strategic planning, and leadership development. In her spare time, you can find her kayaking, cycling and spending time with her husband, Larry Smith, and eating his salted baguettes.

After having been an admirer of the works of William Shakespeare since high school David Leonard joined the SDSF Board of Directors during the summer of 2017. David's professional background includes working in the mental health field; he is currently News Director at KYNT AM 1450 Radio in Yankton where he also hosts the Alive at Five program. Personal interests include spending time with his dog Luke, hiking, hunting & fishing, cryptocurrency, homebrewing and cooking.

David Leonard, Director

KYNT, News Director

Alexis Mabel Oskolkoff is an enrolled member of the Sicangu Lakota (Rosebud Sioux) from her mother’s side and Unangan (Alaskan Aleut) from her father’s side. She received her A.A. in Business Management at Sinte Gleska University with an emphasis in Cultural Resource Management. There she was vice President of Student Council and Ms. Founders Day Runner-up. She received a dual B.A. degree in Anthropology and Native Studies at The University of South Dakota with minor in Archaeology &  Earth Science. She was a member of the Student Government and an active member of  many campus clubs and organizations. Oskolkoff has worked in cultural reparation and language revitalization for area tribes. She has a strong passion for and does work in HIV/AIDS awareness in tribal communities. She is currently a stay-at-home mom of two wonderful boys and enjoys beading, sewing and painting in her free time.

Christina Wells was born in Yankton, SD. Raised by her Dakota educator grandfather and grandmother in Fort Thompson on South Dakota’s Crow Creek Reservation and in Vermillion, SD, Wells learned the traditional and liminal ways of living in the world from a young age, often involving an irreverent sense of humor. Wells has been involved as a performer and producer in theater and dramatic performances for two decades. Recently, she was a featured storyteller on The Moth, a national storytelling organization that includes a program on public radio. A parent and aunt who is active in many community organizations, Wells works and lives in Vermillion.

Joe Stollenwerk, Director

University of South Dakota Theatre Department

Joe Stollenwerk is Assistant Professor of Directing at the University of South Dakota where he oversees the MFA Directing program and also teaches acting, playwriting, film, and theatre history. He received his Ph.D. in Theatre and Drama from Indiana University, his MA in English and Master of Education from Xavier University, and his BA in Drama from Kenyon College. He has worked with Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, Know Theatre, Cincinnati Fringe Festival, Indiana Festival Theatre, Black Hills Playhouse, and many others, including Ovation Theatre Company in Cincinnati, which he co-founded and served as Artistic Director for nine years.

John Howe serves as Associate Dean of Students at the University of South Dakota. In this role he manages various departments across the Division of Student Services and enjoys the opportunity to work closely with USD’s amazing students. John’s path to South Dakota was not a direct one; he was born in India and raised as an Army brat in Germany and throughout the United States. He has also served as an educator and administrator in Taiwan, the United Arab Emirates, India, and Afghanistan. He now calls Vermillion home.

Text to come

  • Facebook Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon
  • Instagram Social Icon

We're free, because you give!