“As Open Door Community Theatre continues its journey, it is important to stay true to our roots, drive greater engagement with the community, grow talents in individuals, and give to deserving charities.”
Craig Hamer is retired from 3M, where he was an engineer who created process and product solutions for a wide variety of global products. His first interaction with theater was in high school, as a lighting crew member at Woodbury High School. The arts are important to Craig’s entire family, with his wife and son spending time in orchestras, St. Ambrose music ministry and theater pit orchestras, and a daughter who works in ceramic fine arts. Craig was also involved with First Robotics through East Ridge High School as a mentor. In his free time, he enjoys participating in a golf league, curling league, boating, biking and crosswords.
Vice Chair, Governance
“Community theater brings creative forces and community forces together like nothing else. All of those forces came together triumphantly for ‘Shrek’ in 2019 to inaugurate Open Door Community Theatre, and for ‘The Little Mermaid’ in 2022 because we were able to emerge from the pandemic hiatus, which was just plain electrifying.”
Jerry Williams has been a divorce attorney for 29 years, with a solo practice in Woodbury since 2008. His longtime involvement in community theater, often with his family, started with backstage roles – set painting, ad sales, programs – and moved on to playing in the pit orchestra, performing onstage in a few holiday shows, and then music directing (vocal and orchestra). A dedicated New York Times puzzler and wordler, Jerry is an avid tennis fan, having attended the U.S. Open, French Open and most recently, Indian Wells in California. His own playing “career” involved pickup matches with neighbors, hitting with his daughters (now grown) and grudge matches with his father and siblings during family reunions.
“As a past community and school theater volunteer, my experiences were incredibly energizing and positive. I want to be part of building an organization that sustains the experience I had as a volunteer, while giving back to the community for many years to come.”
Colleen Emery’s 32-year career at 3M includes her current role as vice president of plant operations in the Healthcare Business Group. With two daughters who participated in the arts during their K-12 years, Colleen stepped up to volunteer behind the scenes, giving her a greater perspective and admiration of live theater after seeing first-hand what it takes to put on a great performance. Colleen brings a wealth of volunteer experience to Open Door Community Theatre, including serving on educational boards at the K-12 and collegiate level and a local chamber of commerce board. Her interests include home improvement projects, flower gardening, biking, hiking and spending time with family.
“Community theater is special, and Open Door Community Theatre truly understands how important it is to create a welcoming environment where all are accepted. How can you not want to be part of that?”
Alex Berger currently works in Boston Scientific’s Design Assurance division. A theater veteran with over 40 productions in the last 15 years, Alex performed in school productions, with Woodbury Community Theatre and at the Phipps Center for the Arts. His present role is more behind-the-scenes, primarily as stage manager and most recently with Ashland Productions and Theatre in the Round. A proud Minnesota Gopher alum who enjoys golf and board games, Alex notes that the opportunity to help further Open Door Community Theatre’s mission to give back to the community that raised him is particularly exciting, in a time where the world needs the arts more than ever.
“I love Open Door Community Theatre’s mission to bring together the arts and charitable giving, and I look forward to helping the organization grow and become a known presence in the community.”
The director of human resources at Supportive Living Solutions, Stacey Dolan shares a love of music and theater with her husband. After college, Stacey concentrated on folk music gigs around the Twin Cities, and then returned to theater to find a community of like-minded people and feel a sense of connection in performance. She has appeared in productions with Woodbury Community Theatre, Stillwater Community Theatre, Ashland Productions, the Phipps Center for the Arts and Open Door Community Theatre’s inaugural show, “Shrek the Musical.” As a past volunteer at Voices of Hope Women’s Choir, Special Olympics and Sheridan House, Stacey recently took up gardening as a peaceful project, and is very proud of her spaghetti squash harvest.
“The caliber of Open Door Community Theatre volunteers and the talented and hardworking individuals on the production teams have blown me away. I love the idea of being part of a growing organization, and I look forward to bringing my production skills and experience to the board of directors, as well as my knowledge and expertise of growing a company and brand as a small business owner.”
Heather Fisher, the proud owner of Core Pilates Studio in St. Paul, was raised in a theater family, appearing on stage since age 5 and choreographing/directing since age 15. She has served as an actor/director/choreographer throughout the Twin Cities over the past 25 years, including Ashland Productions, Woodbury Community Theatre, Open Door Community Theatre, Artistry, Lakeshore Players Theatre and the Phipps Center for the Arts in Hudson. Heather has deep ties to the east metro – she has directed and choreographed numerous productions at Woodbury High School and Hill-Murray School, and in 2013 founded a small independent theater company with fellow Hill-Murray alumni – Desperate for Approval – that produces original comedic/farce.
Abigail Heimel Peterson
“Theater was such an influential part of my life growing up. I’m looking forward to all the amazing things we have planned and the future of Open Door Community Theatre, and am most excited about Open Door being a place for kids to find their voice on stage.”
Abigail Peterson is a construction project manager at Minneapolis-based Gardner Builders, where she leads a team specializing in projects at healthcare facilities. She grew up outside of Hudson and found her theater community at a young age at the Phipps Center for the Arts. A performer and volunteer on stages across the east side of the Twin Cities, Abigail appeared onstage in Open Door Community Theatre’s “Shrek the Musical” while her husband worked backstage building sets. They live in St. Paul with their corgi, Murphy. She’s excited to serve Open Door Community Theatre in a new capacity as a board member.
“I have an immense passion for various forms of art; I believe it’s so valuable to everyone, of all ages, to experience the joy, beauty and magic the arts can bring. Open Door Community Theatre’s mission spoke to me personally, and I’m thrilled to offer my talents, knowledge, time and energy as a board member.”
An executive search leader at Cultura Solutions, Lexy Johnson has a long history of involvement in choir, orchestra, dance and performing arts communities in Minnesota and North Dakota. Her passion for classically-trained ballet led her to study at the prestigious Royal Winnipeg Ballet in Canada at age 15, and she served as dance club president at her alma mater, the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. Lexy, who lives in River Falls, Wis. with her husband, daughter and two cats, enjoys practicing yoga, reading, baking, spending time outdoors and being a spectator to many local arts performances.
“Finding a safe and loving place where people of all ages, abilities and demographics can build a community, continue their passion for the performing arts, and give back is magical thing that I am so excited to be a part of.”
A realtor with the Coldwell Banker Lisa Endersbe Team, Annamarie McDonald grew up in Afton, finding passion for performing onstage at the age of five as Gretl in “The Sound of Music.” A graduate of the Saint Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists, she has been a performer and assisted in show productions with Ashland Productions, the Phipps Center for the Arts, Lakeshore Players and Open Door Community Theatre. Annamarie lives with her husband, Andy, in Apple Valley where she enjoys learning new board games with friends, listening to true crime podcasts and finding the perfect place to sing karaoke.
“I love the intergenerational aspect of Open Door Community Theatre; there aren’t many places where people of all ages, from all walks of life, have the opportunity to work together for a common purpose. That is the very model of healthy community that we need so much more of in our world.”
After more than 30 years in professional music ministry, Mary Reimann is delighted to serve as the director of Spirit Song Choir, an independent, ecumenical community choir. Music has always been central to family life for Mary. She grew up with a piano in the kitchen (and the house rule that they were not allowed to play the piano during dinner). As a child, Mary was part of Woodbury’s first community theatre production in 1976, “Sing Out Sweet Land.” As an adult, she has enjoyed performing with her father and children in this wonderful and vibrant theatre community. Mary is passionate about community singing, especially with elders in senior communities, with the Spirit Song Radio crew. She also enjoys walking, hiking, dancing, yoga, and teaching her very smart dog fancy tricks.