Office of the Chancellor

March 11 - Joel Veenstra

Section 1

Joel Veenstra

Joel Veenstra

Joel Veenstra serves as Associate Chair of Production and Co-head of the Stage Management Program for University of California’s Claire Trevor School of the Arts’ Drama Department. In addition to being a Professor of Teaching, he is an Actors’ Equity Association stage manager, production manager, producer, and improviser. Within his hundreds of credits, his collaborators include Cirque du Soleil, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Cornerstone Theatre Company, Improbable, Warner Bros. Entertainment via Alcon Entertainment, among others. He has served on the Board of Directors for the Applied Improvisation Network (and the 2017 World Conference Chair); the William and Anna VandenBosch Gospel Foundation; and the Stage Managers’ Association (as Western Regional Director), a national organization headquartered in New York City. Improvisation also plays a key component in Veenstra’s teaching, research and creative ventures. While improvisation can be a framework for creating entertainment, Veenstra has also applied improvisational concepts within the fields of business, healthcare, and intergenerational and cultural bridge building. On a human level: whether he’s practicing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, performing improv comedy, coordinating a production, or advising a struggling student, Veenstra has made a name for himself as the person who can find a path forward when none seems to exist. He calmly and compassionately engages challenges, solves problems, supports his associates, and ensures the show indeed goes on.