Lifeline Theatre

Board Position Details

BOARD MEMBER: Lifeline is seeking individuals who are passionate about what we do and are willing to dedicate time to further our mission and to open their networks to expand our family.

The purpose of our board is to advise, govern, oversee policy and direction, and assist with the leadership and promotion of Lifeline Theatre in order to support the organization’s mission and needs. Day-to-day operations are led by Lifeline’s Managing and Artistic Directors. The board-staff relationship is a partnership, and the appropriate involvement of the board is critical and expected.

Member Responsibilities:
– Enthusiastically promote Lifeline’s mission and activities
– Regularly attend bi-monthly board meetings
– Serve on a committee:
     – Nominating Committee
     – Corporate Relationship Committee
     – Facilities Committee
     – Finance Committee
     – Strategic Planning Committee
     – Annual Benefit Committee
– Assume responsibility for specific assignments related to board and committee activities
– Lend professional and/or personal expertise to support Lifeline’s goals
– Attend Lifeline events to stay connected to the end result of our work –
Identify and recruit new board members
– Participate in cultivating funders and other types of supporters
– Solicit donations from individuals and businesses with potential interest in Lifeline
– Make personal financial contributions to Lifeline, including:
     – Annual unrestricted gift of a minimum of $3,500
     – Purchase at least 2 tickets to Lifeline’s annual benefit ($150/ticket)
– Time commitment averages 4-6 hours per month

Member Expectations:
– Personal commitment to Lifeline’s mission
– Time, dedication, and dependability
– Positive, collaborative attitude and proactive problem-solving approach to challenges
– Expertise and experience that will enhance Lifeline’s ability to reach our artistic goals
– Willingness to leverage personal / professional contacts to help expand Lifeline’s resources
– Critical thinking skills for developing new strategies and ideas; and the capacity to actively participate in implementing these ideas

Member Benefits: –
Meet and collaborate with a dynamic group of people
– Gain insight into the workings of a non-profit arts organization
– Broaden your own business skill and experience
– Play a vital role in Chicago’s vibrant cultural sector


  • Board Term: One year, renewed each June. Executive Committee terms are two years.
  • Financial Contribution: Board members are required to contribute financially.
  • Faith-based Organization: We are not a faith-based organization.
  • Skills: Networking, fundraising

About Lifeline Theater

Founded in 1982, Lifeline is known for staging innovative adaptations of great works of fiction as well as commissioning original work. In 1987, Lifeline added KidSeries plays for children and families and has been producing full seasons of programming for both adults and children ever since. Over the course of thirty-six seasons and nearly two hundred productions, Lifeline Theatre has made not only an indelible mark on the Chicago theatre scene, but an invaluable contribution to the theater world at large. Life-line’s dedicated artistic ensemble has developed 143 world premiere literary adaptations and original plays, nearly 40 of which have had a life beyond their Lifeline premieres, with over 300 subsequent productions spread across over forty U.S. states, six Canadian provinces, plus productions in England, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, and Guatemala. Additionally, three scripts developed at Lifeline Theatre have gone on to U.S. national tours and over a dozen have been published. Lifeline Theatre has garnered a total of 53 Jeff awards (Equity and Non-Equity), including 16 for New Adaptation, New Musical, or New Work.

Lifeline produces a season of three MainStage and three KidSeries shows annually. All Lifeline’s productions are new works (or reimagined remounts of previously commissioned new works created for Lifeline): literary adaptations conceived and adapted by members of Lifeline’s artistic ensemble and other Chicago-based artists. In the 2016-17 season, Lifeline reached a record 22,485 audience members through our programming: MainStage, KidSeries, and drama camps. Additionally, Lifeline offers a Sneak Peek prior to each MainStage production and an Open House prior to each KidSeries production, where the public is invited to take a glimpse into the rehearsal process and (for kids’ shows) create a show-themed craft. We also host four Community Day performances for each KidSeries show that allow local residents to attend free of charge: 3,500 people take advantage of these programs annually.

All Lifeline’s productions offer designated performances for persons with disabilities, including open-captioning for patrons who are d/Deaf or hard of hearing, pre-show touch tours and audio description for patrons who are blind or have low vision, and autism/sensory friendly performance for each KidSeries production. In 2017, we offered seven open-captioned performances and two ASL-interpreted KidSeries performances for patrons who have deafness or hearing loss, six audio-described performances and pre-show Touch Tours for patrons with blindness or low vision, and three autism/sensory-friendly KidSeries performances for patrons with social or cognitive disabilities. Lifeline also offers patrons with disabilities fully refundable and steeply discounted tickets to all our designated accessible performances.

Our work goes beyond our theatre’s walls, particularly through our Artists-in-Residence Program. This program aligns our company’s mission with a classroom curriculum that focuses on ensemble work and literary adaptation. In the 2017-18 school year, Lifeline Theatre’s Artists-in-Residence program served 1,109 students across 49 classrooms in nine schools. The majority of the students we served are here in our Rogers Park community, within a two-mile radius of our theatre. Most of these children have not had the opportunity to see a live theatre production or explore drama as an art form outside our work with them.