Miller named President of West Hudson Arts & Theater Co.

The West Hudson Arts & Theater Company has announced founding President Jerry Ficeto will assume the newly created role of Founding President Emeritus for the West Hudson-based community theater effective immediately and Brand-Leigh Miller will assume the organization’s presidency.

In his new role, Ficeto will continue to work with the creative and technical teams, actively participate in outreach to the community and as serve in an advisory capacity to the W.H.A.T.’s Executive Board.

The vacated role of Vice President will be named at a later date. Both Cecilia Lindenfelser and Linda Kraus D’Isa will remain in the respective roles of Executive Board Treasurer and Secretary.

For the last 10 years under Ficeto’s direction, the W.H.A.T. says its mission has been to bring live theater to the West Hudson community through quality productions and theatrical education that enhances the community.

Founded by Ficeto in 2010 with a small group of arts-minded citizens, business people and educators, W.H.A.T. has grown into an active organization in West Hudson, boasting dozens of theatrical performances and collaborations, community events and arts education programs.

“If W.H.A.T. never existed, our community would certainly survive, but I believe it would be a far greyer place, and our absence would surely be felt. W.H.A.T. has certainly already made a difference in the lives of so many in our community,” Ficeto said.

“I am honored to be given the opportunity to lead W.H.A.T. into the next decade,” Miller said of her appointment. “W.H.A.T. has filled a much-needed role in this community over the last 10 years, so when asked by Jerry — who has become a mentor and true friend — if I would be interested in carrying on his vision, my answer was an enthusiastic ‘yes.’”  That goal will be to evolve the community theater’s identity, broaden its footprint in all the communities in West Hudson and expand and innovate within both programming and the W.H.A.T. arts education program.”

Said Ficeto of Miller: “We believe Brandi has the vision and the talent to deliver our theater company to its next phase as we work toward expanding our footprint in the West Hudson community, be increasingly innovative and  inclusive with our programming, and enhance our already successful Education Department.  W.H.A.T. couldn’t be in better hands.”

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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.