Staff Spotlight: Laura Lenhart
Have you heard that the Fox Cities P.A.C. is a nonprofit and wondered “So what does that mean?” or purchased a ticket and thought “I wonder how much a performer makes.” Laura Lenhart, the Vice President of Finance and Operations, is the one in charge of making sure all of those numbers work together so the Center can accomplish its mission in the community, provide world-class entertainment and operate successfully as a business. Laura, who has been with the Center for 14 years, leads the finance and operations teams, guiding and supporting them to live the Center’s mission and vision in their daily work.
1. What have been a few of your favorite shows? The Tempest by London’s AandBC Theatre Company and Les Miserables. Next year I am very excited for Beautiful and Itzhak Perlman with the Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra.
2. Why is it important for people to understand that the Center is a nonprofit? It’s important that people understand the Center is a nonprofit because of the indispensable value it brings to the Fox Cities community. The arts are able to bring diverse groups together for shared and transformative experiences, strengthening our community. The cost to bring live performing arts across the country or from overseas to the Fox Cities can be expensive and the price of a ticket often is not enough to cover the costs which is why the government allows for organizations like ours to raise contributions to support these important initiatives. For example, a Broadway ticket may cost on average $86. The first $78 of that ticket goes back to the producers of the show to pay the artist, the crew to run the show, the cost of props and all the costumes, as well as the cost to pack up everything in trucks and drive to the Fox Cities. The remaining $8 allows the Center to pay for costs such as the utility bill, building maintenance and security.
3. What does being a nonprofit mean to the community? Being a nonprofit means that the community can invest in the arts with tax deductible funds to support our mission. Their generous support allows us to further our mission and provide specifically designed programs that do everything from reaching underserved populations to enhancing appreciation of the arts, encouraging community conversation and bringing people together with fun and engaging shared experiences. It really comes down to being deeply rooted in the community and working to make a difference.
4. What is your favorite part of your job? Working with a great team to fulfill an amazing mission!
Next time you see Laura around the Center, be sure to say hello!