DePaul University - Dean, The Theatre School

IL, Chicago

The Theatre School (TTS) at DePaul University is one of the nation’s foremost conservatories for the education and training of theatre artists. To build upon its exceptional success to date, TTS seeks a dean to succeed a long-serving incumbent upon his retirement.

The Theatre School provides training across the theatre arts with an expanding curriculum serving performers, designers, administrators, writers, and other theatre artists in 15 undergraduate majors and three graduate programs. Literally and metaphorically in the heart of Chicago’s renowned theatre scene, TTS is ideally positioned to prepare its students for the theatre of today and tomorrow. Its new dean will lead the institution in conceiving and becoming the leading institution for the re-emerging American theatre. Of paramount importance is TTS’ and DePaul’s Catholic, Vincentian mission and values, particularly its passionate commitment to anti-racism, which the new dean will embrace and make a central tenet of The Theatre School’s identity and strategies moving forward.

The successful candidate to lead TTS into this new era will be a leader and manager of considerable skill and experience, collaborating with a dedicated faculty and staff that is admirably integrated and focused on both student success and ground-breaking creative activities. The dean will be a theatre artist who demonstrates a successful current or recent history as a practitioner and a track record for teaching and nurturing emerging artists. An earned terminal degree and experience as a tenured faculty member is preferred, and professional experience and accomplishments commensurate with an appointment to the DePaul TTS faculty will be considered in lieu thereof. Demonstrating successful experience as an administrator in a complex environment, the dean will serve both as the producer of TTS’ season of performances and as its principal face to the public. To this end, a prodigious work ethic and boundless energy combined with superior communication and relationship-building skills are required, and candidates with experience raising funds from philanthropic sources will be at a decided advantage.

As the American theatre recovers from the pandemic and faces a future that is more diverse and inclusive, The Theatre School at DePaul University is optimally positioned to play a leading role in its metamorphosis. TTS’ new dean will lead its compelling community in providing both the ideas and the people who will be in the vanguard in this new paradigm.

A detailed leadership profile is available above under Related Documents. 

All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as separate documents, a letter of interest addressing the themes in the profile and a CV or resume.

WittKieffer is assisting DePaul University in this search. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by September 27, 2021. 

Application materials should be submitted using WittKieffer’s Candidate Portal, via the buttons below. Nominations and inquiries can be directed to: Dennis Barden, Jen Meyers Pickard, Ph.D., and Bree Liddell at

DePaul University is an Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, marital status, physical or mental disability, protected veteran status, genetic information or any other legally protected status, in accordance with applicable federal, state and local EEO laws.