Tammy Belton-Davis Joins Milwaukee Repertory Theater Leadership Team as Loaned Executive Chief Diversity Officer
June 26, 2020 (Milwaukee, Wis] – Artistic Director Mark Clements and Executive Director Chad Bauman are thrilled to expand Milwaukee Repertory Theater’s leadership team with Tammy Belton-Davis as a loaned executive Chief Diversity Officer for a ten month appointment focusing on equity, diversity and inclusion (ED&I) strategies, engagement and communications. Ms. Belton-Davis, founder and principal of Athena Communications, will work directly with executive leadership, board of trustees and the consulting firm The Kaleidoscope Group, to develop, implement and measure ED&I goals for the theater and serve as an internal coach on inclusiveness and diversity issues.
In October 2019, Milwaukee Rep’s Board of Trustees unanimously adopted a new, five-year strategic plan, which centers equity, diversity and inclusion as one of the theater’s top priorities. Soon thereafter, trustees authorized funding to engage The Kaleidoscope Group, a national ED&I consulting firm to develop our ED&I strategy. As our work continues with The Kaleidoscope Group, the Board of Trustees and senior leadership recognized the need to expand our leadership team as we build our internal ED&I skillset. Ms. Belton-Davis will be an accelerant in this important work and at the conclusion of her engagement will assist the theater in a transition into a more permanent staffing structure to lead our ED&I work in the future.
“We are facing two crises at the same time – one acute with COVID-19 and the other chronic stemming from hundreds of years of systemic racism. Our theater is not immune from the systems of inequality in Milwaukee and we must meet both challenges head-on,” said Executive Director Chad Bauman. “Tammy has worked with Milwaukee Rep as both a volunteer and consultant for more than 7 years. In that time, she has been a passionate advocate for our work, a strategic partner in our growth, and a mentor to me. I’m thrilled she will be joining our team as a loaned executive from Athena Communications and will serve as our theater’s first Chief Diversity Officer as we continue our work to ensure that our theater is welcoming and inspirational to all.”
“Milwaukee Rep is a vibrant cultural cornerstone of Milwaukee, and I am honored to join the leadership team over the next ten months,” stated Tammy Belton-Davis. “We are living through incredible times, and in this moment in history our community is looking for leadership to drive systemic change. I applaud Milwaukee Rep for exercising the accountability, courage, and commitment required to achieve equity that truly represents our ideal community. I am committed to working with the team to successfully implement the ED&I work Milwaukee Rep has already begun. Together, we will build a better theater for the future of Milwaukee and this community.”
Tammy Belton-Davis will work hand in hand with Milwaukee Rep’s ED&I Committee which is chaired by Warren Buliox (Partner, MWH Law Group) and includes trustees Andres Gonzalez (VP & Chief Diversity Officer, Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin), trustee Christopher Rowland (Global Chief Diversity Officer, Manpower), President of the Board Greg Oberland (President, Northwestern Mutual (ret), Brett Blomme (President, Cream City Foundation), Morgan Phelps (CEO, Colorful Connections), Chad Bauman (Executive Director, Milwaukee Rep), Mark Clements (Artistic Director, Milwaukee Rep), May Adrales (Associate Artistic Director, Milwaukee Rep), Melissa Vartanian (Managing Director, Milwaukee Rep), and Jenny Toutant (Interim Chief Engagement & Education Officer, Milwaukee Rep).
For more information, please visit www.MilwaukeeRep.com
Tammy Belton-Davis, Athena Communications
With a background spanning over two decades in government, education and public relations, Tammy Belton-Davis merged her love of policy, advocacy and community with communications by launching Athena Communications in 2009. She is the founder and principal of Athena Communications, a firm delivering strategic and impactful communications to its corporate and government affairs partners. Athena has a demonstrated track record in helping clients with a variety of public engagement efforts. Tammy is an award-winning public relations professional having been inducted in Alverno College’s Vanguard Society, the highest honor bestowed upon an alumnus for their professional achievement and community service in 2017. She was honored later in 2017 as Center of Change for her work and commitment to work as a change agent in Milwaukee. In March, 2018 her firm was recognized with a Diversity in Business Award by the Milwaukee Business Journal.
Prior to launching Athena, Tammy held senior level positions in city government and community-based organizations, and served as staff assistant with the Milwaukee County Board and Milwaukee Common Council. She specializes in brand management, strategic communications and government affairs.