Each year  International Thespian Officers (ITO) are elected by their peers. These six students are passionate about theatre and the power of theatre education! They represent student voices in the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA) and International Thespian Society (ITS).

The class of 2022-23 has been elected and they will serve from now to next June. Their goals are to nurture student leaders, advocate for the arts, be a voice for students with the EdTA staff, and so much more. 

The new class includes:

1.  Addie Blumberg (Chair), Pennsbury High School, Troupe #830
2. Ben Feldman, Denver School of the Arts, Troupe #5869
3. Reagan Godwin, Frisco High School, Troupe #5703
4. Catie Jamieson, Northwood High School, Troupe #6309
5. Peyton Locke Lyons, Fayetteville High School, Troupe #717
6. Gretchen Olah, West Orange High School, Troupe #1983 

Meet your new ITO!


Addie Blumberg headshot

Addie Blumberg (Chair) Troupe 830 Pennsbury HS (PA)

Theatre has taught me the importance of versatility and flexibility. These characteristics have allowed me to grow as a leader, and have shaped me into the person I am today; someone who is ready to tackle any challenge and seize every moment.

Now more than ever, theatre education is a vital core subject that should be taught in our schools. This past year (2021-22), the ITO began the work of getting the month of March designated as Theatre in Our School’s Month nationally. The process to have this achieved is one of great length but it is an important step toward ensuring that theatre is valued in all schools.

Ben Feldman

Ben Feldman Troupe 5869 Denver School of the Arts (CO)

I have learned to “step into the fear and be brave.” It means to take risks, be bold, and to be brave in everything I do in life. It also means to not let fear get ahold of me, to keep moving forward even when I’m scared.

The key strengths that I bring to serving as an International Thespian Officer are my accountability, availability, persistence, my joyful and positive attitude, my ability to listen, my ability to not always take myself super seriously, and my desire to do things for the good of the collective rather than just myself. I believe that these strengths can all help raise others up, as I am very community oriented and personable.

Reagan Godwin

Reagan Godwin Troupe 5703 Frisco HS (TX)

I have learned that it is okay not to know who you are or who you want to be. You are not going to be the same person that you are right now in five years, so it is important to take time and grow. Experiment and try new things! Take risks! It is okay to make mistakes in life to figure out the person that you want to become.

I love to serve others. I work to ensure that everyone feels heard and that they have a voice in my troupe. It is imperative that everyone in my troupe feels like our community is a safe place for them, where they are able to be themselves and be included in every possible capacity. I want to be able to grow involvement for all in the theatre community. 

Catie Jamieson headshot

Catie Jamieson Troupe 6309 Northwood HS (CA)

I have learned the importance of being empathetic. Sometimes just being an understanding listener is enough to make a person feel loved and supported. By fostering an environment that is built on empathy, we can better create a space for inclusivity and kindness that is necessary for theatre education.

I am dependable and put a full effort into every project. I am a good listener and I’m open to feedback in order to grow as a leader and a person. I am honest and kind and would foster an environment of inclusivity.

Peyton Locke Lyons

Peyton Locke Lyons Troupe 717 Fayetteville HS (AR)

I have learned from theatre the importance of self-advocation. Immersing myself in a space where constructive conversations are constantly encouraged taught me what advocacy is, and that speaking up for myself is crucial to contributing to change. 

I bring knowledge about advocacy for theatre education, as well as the leadership skills necessary to spearhead theatre advocacy efforts to my role as an ITO.

Gretchen Olah

Gretchen Olah Troupe 1983
West Orange HS (FL)

I have learned that making people a priority and making sure they know that they are in a safe environment is key to the success of a theatre. If people don’t feel safe where they are, they won’t stay. So we, as leaders, have to figure out what concerns are popping up and try to resolve problems.

I bring these strengths to my role of ITO: An ability to listen to everyone and not just give my opinion first, delegating if I am leading a project, communicating to everyone involved with a project, and being a team player with everything. 

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