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Conference & Stage Expo
For the Record

Members will be seeing this logo more and more as USITT's 50th anniversary approaches. It is the symbol of a special long-range giving initiative to ensure USITT's support for its wide range of member programs and initiatives.

by Lawrence J. Hill
USITT Treasurer


Five Year Campaign
Plans for the Future

USITT has not made much of a fuss about beginning its 45th year this past March in Toronto. The organization is still breaking records, such as the highest attendance ever at a USITT event, and thinking about the future. Planning for that future means many people are already actively involved in thinking about USITT's upcoming anniversary in 2010.

All will be invited to join in celebrating this vibrant organization that honors the artists, craftspeople, builders, suppliers, and innovators in this "association of design, production, and technology professionals in the performing arts and entertainment technology."

Over the next five years, we will be Honoring Our Past. USITT has had a continuing mission of innovation. In 1961, the Juilliard School was the site for our first ever Conference. In Toronto in 2005, we provided the venue and major support for the first World Stage Design and hosted an OISTAT World Congress meeting in addition to our Annual Conference & Stage Expo. There are many wonderful stories between these two events which reflect the profession's evolution and innovation.

Funding will help in Securing Our Future! The Institute has long supported individual efforts and group projects to advance our profession on both the national and international scene. USITT took the lead on the United States entries in past Prague Quadrennial exhibitions and anticipates doing so well into the future. The Institute funds a wide range of significant research about performance, and recognizes the talent of emerging young designers and technicians. Plans include taking more American design to international exhibitions, and we have just established a new international exhibition utilizing current technology.

To ensure USITT is able to continue to support these ambitious projects, the Board of Directors has created a way for each of us to respond to a significant fund raising effort which will encompass the next five years.

Members, the backbone and lifeblood of what we know as USITT, are being asked to support it financially. Contributions will be used to continue the tradition of innovation which is a USITT hallmark.

As we approach the 50th, this is one way to continue recognizing the contributions of all those who have moved the profession and Institute forward, and help secure its future.

We can best celebrate who we are and what we've accomplished by building the funds needed to support these events in the future. Find out more about four unique funds by visiting the donation pages. While there, download and return a five year pledge form supporting the future of the Institute with this special fund raising campaign during the USITT@50 celebration. Helping create a solid financial base for the next 50 years in support of international activities, research, awards, and students will make those candles burn especially bright in 2010.

With five years to prepare for a really important milestone, our golden birthday, our semi-centennial, the BIG 5-0, there is a wonderful opportunity to reflect and celebrate those 50 years, and to secure the financial future for our core mission.

Have any thoughts? Richard Durst has been named the honorary chair for the USITT@50 fund-raising campaign. Please note, dollars are being sought for the long-range financial stability of USITT's programs and services.

At the same time, President John Uthoff has created an ad hoc committee chaired by Bobbi Owen, VP for Communications, to spearhead the activities surrounding the 50-year celebration itself. Details from the celebration committee will be forthcoming, but save the date - 2010!

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