Posted by John Ester on Jan 30, 2018
Xavier Verna is the Executive Director of the nonprofit Ramsdell Regional Theatre for the Arts.
Raised in Puerto Rico and a graduate of the University of Michigan in Arts Administration, Xavier runs the Ramsdell Theatre as well as being a performing musician. As a nonprofit Ramsdell relies on a corps of volunteers, along with financial support from generous donors and from the City of Manistee. Its diverse programming features live performances (including a live feed from the Metropolitan Opera), workshops, a children's theater and the use of its facility for weddings and other functions.
Audience surveys reflect Ramsdell's positive economic impact on Manistee and a high degree of audience satisfaction. Through its strategic planning Ramsdell has identified financial goals, strengthened its volunteer program and hired an administrative assistant for Xavier. Ramsdell is in transition from a city-operated facility to a self-sustaining separate entity operating under a lease from the city. In 2017 the organization saw its operating revenues increase by 45% and its city subsidy decrease.
On Ramsdell's wish list are further improvements in technology, upgrades in the physical facility and legislation that will permit Ramsdell to obtain a liquor license.  Upcoming events include La Boheme on February 24 and Irish Night in March. All are invited!