New Executive Director

The Northfield Arts Guild Board of Directors is excited to announce that Alyssa Herzog Melby has accepted the position of Executive Director. She will begin on January 26th, 2015. Alyssa is originally from Lonsdale and Montgomery and is currently the Director of Education and Community Engagement at The Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. She brings eight years of experience in arts administration and education to this position. She has an MA in Theater Arts from the University of Pittsburgh, and an BA in English and Theater Arts from the University of MN – Morris. Please help us in welcoming Alyssa to this position.

The Board would like to thank Paula Granquist and Steve Meyer for their hard work on the search committee, the committed volunteers and Guild staff that helped to interview the candidates, and those of you who attended the open forum for your time, opinions and support!

Work Experience

Alyssa Herzog Melby comes to the Northfield Arts Guild most recently as the Director of Education and Community Engagement for Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, a position she served in for over three and a half years. Recent accomplishments at Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre included securing the funding and support for providing the country’s first-ever Autism/Sensory-Friendly performance of The Nutcracker (December 2013); beginning professional development for educators at PBT after an 8-year lapse, and reaching over 300 preK-12 educators since 2012; developing a youth scholarship programin 2012 for youth ages 5-8 from various socioeconomic backgrounds to attend the PBT School; and beginning a robust accessibility initiative, including an audio-description program for visually-impaired patrons at PBT as well as adaptive dance for youth on the autism spectrum.

Accolades & Involvement

For her work in accessibility, she received the John F. Kennedy Center’s Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability Emerging Leader Award in 2013. Ms. Melby currently or has recently served on several community committees, including the Leadership Exchange in Arts and Disability 2015 Content Committee, the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards Internal Review Team, the Pennsylvania Department of Education Content Committee for Dance, the Pittsburgh Emerging Arts Leaders Council, the Pittsburgh Public Schools Dance Curriculum team.

Teaching Experience & Education

Prior to joining PBT, Ms. Melby served as Director of Education for Prime Stage Theatre as well as a freelance teaching artist, actor, and dramaturg in the Pittsburgh area.  As a teaching artist, she has worked for the Pittsburgh Public Theatre (Shakespeare Monologue and Scene Competition), City Theatre (Young Playwrights Competition and Festival), Shakespeare-in-the-Schools at the University of Pittsburgh, the MGR Foundation (Murals: Violence Prevention Through the Arts program), and Gateway to the Arts (received training in the Wolf Trap Early Learning Through the Arts model). She received an MA degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Pittsburgh where her studies focused on theatre-in-education and theatre for youth and received a BA in Theatre and English from the University of Minnesota, Morris.

Having grown up in Lonsdale and Montgomery, she is delighted to be coming back to where her time in the arts all began and becoming a part of the rich, vibrant community of Northfield. She and her spouse, Jacob, have two children: Adela (3) and Henrik (1).