DUDLEY COCKE, Artistic Director
Dudley Cocke, co-founder and Artistic Director of Roadside Theater, has served in some combination of playwright, dramaturg, and director for all Roadside productions. His teaching residencies include Cornell University, the College of William & Mary, and New York University. A co-founder of Alternate ROOTS, he has served on the boards of Theatre Communications Group and Grantmakers in the Arts, among other national organizations. For creating artistic opportunities for people whose stories are not reflected in mainstream cultural institutions, he received the 2002 Heinz Award for Arts and Humanities. He is also the recipient of Imagining America's 2017 Randy Martin Spirit Award for "demonstration of consistency and originality in scholarship, artistry, pedagogy, mentorship, and leadership, but also for exuding...generosity, sincerity, and humor."
DONNA PORTERFIELD, Managing Director
Donna is also a playwright who works on Roadside artistic projects. She served as playwright for Roadside's Thousand Kites and Voices from the Battlefront, and recently produced a community cultural development residency in Albuquerque, New Mexico in collaboration with Media Literacy Project, La Placita, Young Women United, and El Cuentro De Igualdad Y Derechos, that resulted in the creation of a performance, From School House to Jail House. She is the producer of Roadside’s ongoing, 30-year collaboration with traditional Native American artists in Pueblo Zuni, New Mexico. Donna's most recent script is The Future of Letcher County, a youth-led, interview-and-story-circle-generated play about eastern Kentuckians’ search for sustainable lives in their mountain communities at the end of coal mining.
AMY BROOKS, Program Director & Dramaturg
Amy is a 5th-generation West Virginian who returned to Appalachia just before the 2016 election cycle. Through her work in community-based theater for social change she explores the confluence of dramatic narrative (“What is the story we choose to tell onstage?”) and public narrative (“What is the story we are called upon to tell about ourselves, our community, and our future?”) in intercultural rural-urban performance. Amy holds a BFA in acting from West Virginia University and an MFA in dramaturgy from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where she co-founded and produced the first two seasons of the UMass New Play Lab. She is the former Humanities Director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival and co-creator of @RuralArtsWeekly, a Twitter forum for policy and practice in rural creative placemaking.
KATIE PORTERFIELD, Mascot & Associate Producer
Katie is an 11-year-old Havanese dog. The mascot, spirit animal, and grande dame of Roadside Theater, Katie enjoys shape note barks, chasing cats, running in tightly-controlled circles on the office carpet, and surreptitiously ravaging Wisconsin Cheeseman holiday meat platters when staff are looking away.