The Board of Directors for the Pell City Center for Education and the Performing Arts (CEPA) announces the hiring of the center’s new executive director, Jeff Thompson, who will begin the role Friday, May 20.
Thompson has served as editor and general manager of the Pell City-based media company, St. Clair News-Aegis, since January 2015. In that capacity, he successfully organized and implemented a complete restructuring of the operation that resulted in a return to profit for the publication.
“Since the day I began work in Pell City, I have regarded the Center for Education and the Performing Arts as a community asset with almost limitless potential,” Thompson said. “I am humbled by the opportunity offered by the Board to guide it through the growth its members have planned for the coming years.”
Thompson holds a degree in Journalism from Auburn University. Prior to working for the News-Aegis, Thompson served as executive editor at Starnes Publishing, a Birmingham-based publication company, and managing editor at The Tuskegee News in Tuskegee. Numerous editorial and administrative awards and achievements are credited to him during tenures at these companies.
“As I step into the role, I anticipate Pell City and the surrounding St. Clair County communities will see an immediate increase in availability of new and more frequent programming options at CEPA,” Thompson said. “I am eager to begin meeting with community stakeholders and look forward to discussions about possibilities for the Center.”
Carol Pappas, CEPA Board president, said the immediate goals and objectives will be to build on the Center’s strong foundation and fulfilling the original vision of the facility when the city, school system and community came together to build it.
The CEPA Board plans to bring in more noted acts of regional and national stature, lectures, special events and engaging programs that will benefit Pell City and St. Clair County’s citizens and schools.
“We are really looking forward to a future we think is bright because of CEPA’s vast potential as an event center,” Pappas said. “There is really nothing like it in this state. Owned by the City of Pell City and the Pell City School System, this facility – a 400-seat state-of-the-art theater, a 2,500-seat sports arena and a grand lobby – has great potential to be a destination point not only for cultural arts and sports but for a diverse array of events that will add to the quality of life found in our city.”
In addition to the five-member CEPA board, which includes Pappas, Matthew Pope, Bob Barnett, Henry Fisher and Randy Mason, an advisory council is being tapped to provide greater input on planning for programming and the operation of CEPA going forward.
“We were fortunate to have a large number of applicants, and our top tier of candidates was especially strong. The board agreed that Jeff’s management, print and digital marketing, communication, budget and planning experience, his involvement in communities across St. Clair County and his vision for CEPA were deciding factors in his selection,” Pappas said.
Thompson is a member of Leadership St. Clair County 2016 and marketing and communications volunteer for the Pell City Chamber. Through his work, he has been involved with the Odenville Area Business Association, various civic clubs, City of Pell City, Pell City School System and was a member of the Moody and Leeds chambers.
The 2016 CEPA Summer Drama Camp will be taught at The Pell City Center for Education and Performing Arts theatre next to the Pell City High School Campus. the camp is open for students age 6-18 years old. Campers will experience all aspects of the theatre, from improvisation and theatre games to technical and performanace skills. These skills will be showcased when the campers perform in “How To Eat Like A Child” on the final day of camp.
The camp will be taught by Ginger McCurry, Pell City High School drama teacher. Ms. McCurry has performed with a professional theatre company and taught music and theatre in the Pell City School System for many years.
This camp is a 10-day camp beginning on June 13, 2016 and concluding on June 24, 2016 with a performance scheduled to begin at 6:00pm on the 24th.
The Drama Camp hours will be:
Daily, June 13th – 24th, from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm for ages 6-10
Daily, June 13th – 24th, from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm for ages 11-18
Class production will be held Friday night, June 24th at 6:00 pm
The total cost for the 10-day Drama Camp is $200 per student. Snacks are included in the fee. Please complete the application and mail with your check for $200 to the CEPA office.
1st student – 10 days of camp – $200
Add a 2nd student – both attending 10 days of camp – combined total – $385
You Can’t Google Everything! Google is giving an incorrect location for CEPA – The Pell City Center. Where’s how to get to CEPA!
120 Williamson Drive, Pell City, Alabama 35125
From Interstate 20
Take U.S. 231/ Martin Street South, go 1.5 Miles
Turn right at CVS, go 0.2 Miles
Turn right onto U.S. 78/Cogswell Avenue, continue 1 mile
Turn left onto Williamson Drive
Pell City High School will be on your left, Pell City Center on your right