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Roche Schulfer will step down as Executive Director/CEO at the end of our 2023/2024 Season—his 50th year at the Goodman. Roche has overseen more than 400 productions during his tenure, established A Christmas Carol in 1978 as a Chicago holiday tradition, stewarded the Goodman’s move to our new downtown facility in 2000 and established the Alice C. Rappoport Center for Education and Engagement 2017. Working with countless artists and theater professionals during his decades-long career, he leaves an indelible and lasting legacy on the Chicago theater community.

(l-r: Executive Director/CEO Roche Schulfer, Managing Director/COO John Collins)

The Goodman’s Board of Directors names John Collins, longtime Managing Director/COO, as the Goodman’s new Executive Director, beginning September 1, 2024. In John’s nearly 20-year tenure at the Goodman, he has provided direction and guidance to the senior leadership team; has overseen numerous production transfers to Broadway, regional and international venues; and was instrumental in leading the theater during the pandemic shutdown, producing compelling virtual productions while safely welcoming back artists, staff and patrons to the theater as we returned to stage.

“It’s so important to have a leader with the wisdom, care, allyship and advocacy for our industry that John Collins possesses. He embodies the energy, engagement, experience and expertise that is needed in this unique time where theater is evolving—and specifically within the Chicago community where we are making change and taking risks.”Marissa Lynn Jones, Executive Director of the League of Chicago Theaters.

“For 20 years, John has always demonstrated genuine love and commitment to supporting artists and their creative visions. For me, personally, John was instrumental in the success of the Goodman’s Latino Theatre Festival—making even the most challenging international collaborations a joyous creative venture. The future for the Goodman could not be in better hands,” said Goodman Resident Artistic Associate Henry Godinez.

“I can’t think of anyone who has been more influential on the Chicago theater scene than Roche Schulfer. His leadership extends beyond the Goodman throughout the entire community, in years of service with the League of Chicago Theaters, and in his lifelong commitment to providing opportunity for underrepresented voices on stage and behind the scenes. For more than 20 years, he has been a personal mentor to me, and to so many others, and a trusted colleague and friend.” –Michelle T. Boone, President and CEO of the Poetry Foundation

“One cannot think of theater in Chicago without thinking about Roche. He has been a major force for artistic excellence in our city, and his impact has resonated to the national theater community and internationally. It’s been an enormous pleasure to partner with the Goodman and with Roche.”Carlos Tortolero, President Emeritus of the National Museum of Mexican Art.

“I extend deepest congratulations to my longtime producing partner and friend on his decision to retire as Executive Director/CEO,” “Collaborating with Roche for 35 years remains a highlight of my life in the theater. There is no better producer in the American theater, nobody who cares more about enabling artists to do their best work. I’m ever grateful for all he has done to make the Goodman the internationally known theater it is today.”Robert Falls, Tony Award-winning director and former Goodman Artistic Director