Karen L.B. Evans is President and Founder of the Black Women Playwrights' Group. She has received individual fellowships in playwriting from both the National Endowment for the Arts and the DC Commission on the Arts & Humanities. She was a Helen Hayes Award nominee for "Outstanding New Play" as well as a Sundance Institute finalist. Karen participated in the Eugene O'Neill National Playwrights' Conference and is a recipient of the John F. Kennedy Center "Front & Center Award." She has also received the "Citation for Excellence in Design and Writing" from the Washington Education Press Association.
Her work has been published and presented by Hyperion Books for Children, Meriwether Publishing, Applause Theater Books, The Discovery Channel Magazine, American Showcase Theatre, and PBS. Karen holds a BA with honors in Drama from Dartmouth College and a MFA in Playwriting from The Catholic University of America.
Imani Drayton Hill
Imani Drayton Hill is an economist at the Bureau for Labor Statistics and has interest in cultural policy and planning. She was managing director of Woolly Mammoth Theater and was interim vice president for programs at the Association of Performing Arts Presenters. She holds a Masters of Science in Applied Economics from John Hopkins University Krieger School of Advanced Academic Studies.
Ashish Shah is the CEO of Appstute Technologies, which is the developer of 12@12NOON and 12 LINE WONDER. Appstute develops Enterprise mobile apps, consumer mobile apps, and casual and multi-player mobile games. Ashish is passionate about developing leadership qualities within his team. He has over a decade of industry experience working with both start-up and global corporations, and versatile experience in working in various domains - healthcare, utility, water management, location based, iPhone, mobile and gaming services. He holds a B.E. in Mechanical Engineering as well as diplomas in Advanced Computing in Information Technology, and Project Management.
David Fleming is a startup and non profit solution inventor. Mr. Fleming started with Southwestern Company in college and by age 23 had his first $1MM crew from 14 countries. His telemedicine project 10 years ago was sold to Columbia Medical Systems. Lately, David's work with biometric informatics gave Villanova the edge for two NCAA championships. He works in large data, algorithms, software design, and patent pending solutions. He brokers in psychographic and transactional data for fundraising with several non profits.
Sage Fortune was born and raised in Long Island, NY. She is a recent graduate of Howard University, where she received a BFA in Acting. Sage has also trained at the British American Drama Academy (BADA) as well as Lyric Repertory Company where she also performed professionally. She has also received credits as a stage manager and director on several productions. Sage is pursuing a career as a professional actor, director, and producer.
Amrita Ramanan is the Director of Literary Development and Dramaturgy at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. In her five seasons at OSF, she served as the Production Dramaturg for a variety of productions. Previous to her tenure at OSF, Amrita was the Literary Manager/Artistic Associate at Arena Stage, where she dramaturged several of Arena’s productions; produced the playwright residencies for Lisa Kron and Charles Randolph-Wright; and produced Arena Stage’s New Play Reading Series. For three years, Amrita was the Associate Producer and Resident Dramaturg at Double Edge Theatre and supported the development of Double Edge’s site-specific summer performances Sharazad, A Tale of Love and Magic and Once a Blue Moon. She is a board member for the Network of Ensemble Theaters and the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas.She also serves as National Advisor for Art of the Rural and the Rural Policy Research Institute’s Next Generation Initiative. Amrita earned a BFA in Theatre History and Dramaturgy from the University of Arizona.
Sage Xaxua Morgan-Hubbard (she/her) is a multidisciplinary artist, poet, activist, and educator. She served as the Academic Partnership Coordinator for the Dance Department at Columbia College Chicago, the Outreach Director of Young Chicago Authors and as a teaching artist throughout and Chicagoland and DC area instructing youth from kindergarten through college and inside Cook County Jail. She is a founder of WORD! Spoken Word Artists and Activists in Providence, RI, and was one of the original members of Spoken Resistance, DC Writers Corps and Sol y Soul. Sage also has developed two original one-woman shows, Chocolativity and Mixed Mamas as well a two-woman show, Mixed Mamas Remix: Vol 1 with Stacy Erenberg. She's earned a B.A. in Performance Studies: Socially Conscious Art of the Everyday and Ethnic Studies at Brown University, an M.A. in Performance Studies at Northwestern University, completed PhD coursework and earned a Gender Studies Certificate.
...and our members
Pamela G. Armstrong-de Vreeze
Pamela G. Armstrong-de Vreeze lives in the Netherlands where she writes stories about ex-patriate life and multi-cultural issues that intersect with traditional Dutch life events. She has also written a children's book entitled, Flori's Friends. The book helps young minds to connect with Mother Nature and to help their parents understand the importance of protecting the environment. Pamela and her group of readers travel to Dutch schools, libraries and environmental forums performing Flori's Friends in both Dutch and English. The book is also a learning tool to help children to understand the commonalities between the two languages.
She is currently working with the Dutch Black Liberators, a support group dedicated to connecting the African-American descendants of World War II soldiers with the villagers who adopted and care for their graves. She is currently writing about the soldiers experiences as Dutch liberators working in the segregated American army. She has been a member of the Black Women Playwrights' Group since it's inception, and has enjoyed seeing the group produce annual readings and a playwrights convention in Chicago.
Betty Miller Buttram
Betty Miller Buttram is an author, playwright, and contributing writer for the Fort Wayne Ink Spot newspaper. Several of her works have been performed at the DC Black Theatre Festival in Washington DC, Primary Stages Einhorn School of Performing Arts (NYC), New Life Productions (Columbia, South Carolina) and the Atlanta Black Theater Festival (Atlanta, Georgia). She has written several plays and monologues. She is the author of Cleo's Lies and is currently working on her next novel, The Hilltop.
Debbie Davidson-Gibbs is pleased to be a member of the Black Women Playwrights' Group and to have her piece, Finding Strength featured in the 12@12NOON series. Debbie's short piece, The Vote was performed at Jacs and at Dragongly Vintage in Northeast Washington, DC as part of the BWPG Steve R. Allen project. In addition, her play, Keeping Your Head Above Water was presented at the inaugural DC Black Theatre Festival. Debbie's dramatic piece, Be My Guest was among those featured at the BWPG 20th anniversary celebration. Debbie has participated in playwriting workshops at American University, the Theatre Lab in Washington, DC, and at the National Meeting of Women of Color Writing. Debbie is grateful for the support of her family and friends and appreciates the actors who portrayed her characters.
Debbie M. Jackson
Debbie M Jackson is a freelance journalist and has been a musical theater performer for over 40 years. Her scripts have been commissioned and produced throughout Washington, DC and New York, and she currently writes for the online DC Theatre Scene. She has a recurring role performing in online theater, and her piece, Anacostia Bound, was selected for a staged reading at the Anacostia Playhouse in Washington DC.
Joy Jones is a lecturer, author, and playwright. Her one act play, A Musical Level of Pain, and her full length play, Searching for a Signal, have each had multiple productions. Her full length play, Outdoor Recess, won the Promising Playwrights Contest of the Colonial Players of Annapolis, MD, and has been produced twice. In Search of Tonto Goldstein, co-authored with Linda Hopper, was part of the Women's Theatre Festival of Memphis. Joy is the author of five books including, Tambourine Moon, Fearless Public Speaking, and Jayla Jumps In.
Debra Rose moved to the DC area from her home of Denver, CO over 20 years ago. In 2002, she became a member of the Black Women Playwrights' Group. She has had several pieces performed at local theaters including The Bench and The Mud, a piece for DNA (Drama, Nuance, Attitude), a project staged at Studio Theater and the Flashpoint Blackbox Theater. Included in the staging of The Katrina Plays, her piece, Momma Said, was performed at both Studio Theater and The Kennedy Center's Page to Stage in 2006. Most recently, Debra has participated in the 12@12NOON series and other BWPG projects. Debra is a mother and grandmother. She is looking forward to her retirement from the United Service after 34 years of service.