Thomas C. Proehl
Inducted Saturday, September 29, 2007
Thomas Proehl graduated from Moorhead High School in 1982. He was active in band, choir, theater, speech and Student Council, serving as Student Council president his senior year. His first role in a play was at Moorhead High under the direction of Grace Holland. He performed in “Gold in the Hills” in 1981 and “Oliver” in 1982.
Proehl holds a bachelor of arts degree in theater and minor in accounting from Minnesota State University Moorhead and a master of fine arts degree in performing arts management from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York.
During the 1990s, Proehl lived and worked in New York. From 1989 to 1995, he was general manager of The Dramatists Guild, a national association representing playwrights, composers and lyricists. In 1991, Proehl was a founding member and the managing director of the Signature Theatre Company, an off-Broadway theater company that specializes in season-long explorations of a single living American playwright’s body of work.
In 1999, Proehl became general manager of The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis. He was named managing director in 2002. His most visible accomplishment as managing director was overseeing the construction of the new $125 million Guthrie Theater complex on the Mississippi River in Minneapolis. He also led the strategic planning processes related to the new Guthrie.
Since December 2006, Proehl has been executive director of the Minnesota State Arts Board, a state agency that encourages the creation, performance and appreciation of the arts in Minnesota. The State Arts Board makes grants to organizations and individuals, primarily through an appropriation from the Legislature.
Proehl is an adjunct lecturer in the Guthrie Theater/University of Minnesota bachelor of fine arts program and the Performing Arts Management Program at Brooklyn College. He continues to serve as an advocate for the arts and artists through his service to communities, organizations and individuals. Proehl lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Update: Thomas Proehl died April 5, 2011, at age 46.