TTAO Summer Newsletter

July, 2023

Big picture

President's Message

Dear Texas Theatre and Adjudicators and Officials Organization:

I hope that this message finds you well. I am pleased and humbled to serve as the new president of our organization. As we prepare for the new UIL OAP season, I wish to take a moment to reflect on the importance of unity, the power of theatre, and the pursuit of improvement. The foundation of our organization centers around serving the educational community through the recruitment, training, and development of adjudicators and contest managers, as well as a dedicated allegiance to our core values. In alignment with the tenets of our organization, I hope that you will join me in establishing the following goals for this year:

  • Provide professional development training for our membership

  • Present diversity training at TxETA Convention 2023

  • Implement a satisfaction survey in 2023 -2024 and use the data to inform decision-making

  • Encourage each adjudicator to provide one free OAP clinic to a Title One School

  • Donate 10% of contest fees earned each season to the C. Lee Turner Real Change Award

Scholarship Fund

  • Increase the number of evaluations by 10%

I firmly believe unity is crucial to the success of our organization. We are all passionate about the same thing – the power of theatre to inspire, educate, and entertain. As we work together to achieve our goals, I look forward to sharing ideas and talents, working collaboratively, and pushing the boundaries of what is possible.

Additionally, let’s work to take our efforts to greater heights. None of us are perfect; there is always room to grow and learn. Whether it’s through attending workshops, seeking feedback, or simply taking the time to reflect on our work, we can still strive to be better adjudicators and contest managers. By committing ourselves to constant improvement, we can ensure that we are always pushing ourselves to be the best we can be. Attached is a survey that asks you to reflect on where we are as an organization and what goals you would like us to pursue in the future. We solicit your ideas.

In closing, thank you for your dedication to this organization. By working together, embracing the power of theatre, and committing ourselves to improvement, I am confident we can achieve great things. Let us continue to inspire, create, and thrive.

We are “Better Together.”


Yvonne J. Phillips-Dupree

TTAO President


Please complete this survey if you are a TTAO member.

June Board Meeting Minutes

If you would like to review the minutes from our June Board Meeting, click here.

C. Lee Turner Real Change Award

Big picture

Grant Applications Open

2023 submissions open on June 15 and close on September 10. More information can be found at

What is the Real Change Campaign?

Real Change is TTAO’s fundraising campaign to place needed dollars into our socio-economically disadvantaged schools and communities.

Money raised will be used to fund:

  • TXETA convention attendance
  • Thespian Festival attendance
  • Summer Drama camp tuitions
  • Clinics
  • Guest artists

We believe these activities change lives and helps expand theatre in our communities which affects our society as a whole.

We challenge you to be part of the real change, and as you accept your contracts for this upcoming UIL OAP season, think about donating and being the difference in implementing Real Change.

Congratulations to the 2024 State One Act Play Adjudicators and Contest Managers!

AAAA-AAAAAA Contest Manager: Larry Carpenter

A- AAA Contest Manager: Carla Schumann

AAAAAA Adjudicators: Royal Brantley, Mandy Epley, Cathy Huvar

AAAAA Adjudicators: Margaret Valenta-Davis, Ezekiel Morgan, Perry Crafton

AAAA Adjudicators: Phillip Taylor, Jill Ludington, Lynae Jacobs

AAA Adjudicators: Aquilla Aubrey, Kelly Russell, Allen Otto

AA Adjudicators: Lisa Hale, Phillip Morgan, H. Russ Brown

A Adjudicators: Missey Head, Greg Arp, Charles Falcon



Our priority is theatre education for students and their teachers. Our policies serve to improve theatre training within the UIL contest framework.

We celebrate differences and include all the varied voices that represent students and the communities we serve.

We hold ourselves to the highest ethical standards. We expect and practice personal and professional integrity.

We commit to open communication and access to information, including governing documents. This instills trust and ensures accountability.

We serve our learning community by bringing our knowledge, experience, and leadership to students and teachers through professional training that instills confidence and provides growth.

Big picture

We will explore each core value throughout the year. To start: A Letter On Service from Yvonne Phillips - Dupree

Service is Our Signature

The time on his clock dwindled mercilessly. Weary and seemingly out of options, the young woman fights to catch her breath and squeeze back tears. Today is a day she cannot afford to fail; there is too much riding on this moment. As children’s footsteps move about feverishly, a flowerpot crashes to the floor. They rush to pick up shards of clay and plastic pink flowers as their eyes gaze at her, seeking instruction. No words come. It was as though this day, the one she had prayed for so long, could get no worse. Amidst her struggles, a man walks toward her with a faint smile, removes a stopwatch from his neck, and hands it to her.” Let’s keep this moving,” he utters, willing her to find strength. His subtext was so effusive that even her students were righted.

This story illustrates my first UIL OAP State Meet experience; the gentleman in question was Mr. Lynn Murray. After so many years, it is hard to describe his compassion’s impact on me that day. If I were to assess his act of goodwill, it would far surpass the singular act of offering me a stopwatch. At that one critical moment, he rendered aid, thusly, willingly my students and me to a higher performance standard. Moreover, his action provided a testament to the power of TTAO Core Values, namely that of service.

Our TTAO service doctrine reminds us, “We serve our community by bringing our knowledge, experience, and leadership to students and teachers through professional training that instills confidence and provides growth.” Service-oriented behavior fosters a healthy and supportive environment where everyone feels valued and respected, and it encompasses dedication to continuous improvement, learning, and teamwork. When all members of our theatre community prioritize service, it enhances the overall quality of our creative process.

As we approach the 2023 – 2024 UIL OAP season, let us challenge ourselves to become even greater stewards of our commitment to service. Some examples of how we might better serve our theatre community include: mentoring neophyte adjudicators and contest managers, having each adjudicator provide one free OAP clinic to a local Title One school, assisting at adjudicator and contest manager trainings, and participating at Thespian Festival Marathon Play adjudication. At the very least, we ask that you consider taking off your stopwatch and offering it to an overwhelmed, novice UIL OAP director.

When we reflect on our course through UIL OAP, we will likely remember occasions when adjudicators or contest managers impacted our theatre program through service, generosity, and positive reinforcement. We must continue to pay it forward in even greater proportions because service is our signature. More ideas about how we might build capacity through service are encouraged. We want to hear about your success stories throughout the year. Send us emails and photographs!

TTAO continues to play a vital role in the theatre community. By prioritizing our mission to serve, we can create a thriving and inclusive environment that benefits all our stakeholders. We will continue to build. We are better together.

TTAO Schedule at TxETA


9:30 - 10:45Open Forum for Adjudicators

11:00 - 12:15Business Meeting -

12:30-2:00Adjudicator Training: Collaborating the Critique - Oral & Written Workshop


11:00 - 12:15Adjudicator Training: Pro Tips

2:00 - 3:15Meet State Adjudicators

5:00 - 6:15Adjudicator Reception


8:00 - 9:15CM Workshop

9:30 - 10:45Adjudicator Training: Grievance Process Workshop


For Contest Managers & Meet Officials

Aug 10
First day to contact a single adjudicator or the first member of a panel for District or Zone contests
First day to draw performance order

Aug 31
Deadline to report bi-district information and adjudicators to state office

Nov 4
Deadline to hold director's planning meeting

Nov 4
First day to contact and contract the second and third members of a panel for zone and district contests

Feb 1
Deadline to set up district One-Act Play Meets
Deadline for executing judging contracts
Deadline for Contest Managers to certify online--This must be done annually

Apr 4
Deadline for certifying the results for district and bi-district contests


Standards and Practices Committee