113 E. Aurora Street
Ironwood, MI 49938
Map & Directions
Wed, Thur, & Fri:
Noon - 4:30pm
109 E. Aurora Street
Ironwood, MI 49938
(Two doors west of the main theatre entrance)
Operation of the Historic Ironwood Theatre is supported in part by an award from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Board & Staff
Tom is a life-long Ironwood resident, a graduate of Gustavus Adolphus College, a U. S. Army veteran, and has been in the real estate appraisal business in Ironwood for nearly 45 years. He served on the Theatre Board during the restoration in the 1980s, came back in 2010-15, including three years as Board President. After a brief hiatus, he was reappointed to the board in late 2016, again assuming the mantle of board president. He also serves as Chairman of the Downtown Ironwood Development Authority, and has been active in many area civic groups over the years.
"The Historic Ironwood Theatre is the single-most important landmark in downtown Ironwood. It is imperative that it is preserved, maintained, and utilized as a cultural center for the entire area."
Sam Filippo lives in Saxon, WI with his wife, Susie. An Army retiree, Sam formerly served as the Theatre board’s Secretary, before taking on the vice-presidency. Sam graduated from St. Norbert College in DePere, WI where he majored in English. . His law degree came later. Sam has appeared on stage at the Ironwood Theatre and Theatre North. He describes himself as:“…a recovering lawyer, a motorcycle tripper, and a wannabe actor”
Julie Lukes recently moved from Erie PA to the Ironwood area, when her husband Dan took up a position in the orthopedics department at Aspirus Grand View. Julie spent more than 30 years as a medical billing specialist, but retired when they relocated and immediately immersed herself in the community, first by joining the hospital auxilliary, and then the theatre board.
"I really wanted to get to know my new community and the theatre seemed like such a big part of so many people's lives", said Julie. "I'm looking forward to getting involved in event planning and management, and maybe helping out with some of the theatre's marketing and PR activities"
Karen Hagemann is a Hurley High School grad. She holds a BS in Medical Technology from the UW Stevens Point and a BA in Management and Leadership from Northland College. Karen worked more than 20 years as a Medical Technologist and nine years with the Iron County Health Department. She participated in the UW Extension Wisconsin Rural Leadership Program from 1998-2000. Karen previously served on the Theatre board from 1996-2002 as board secretary and programming chair. Karen co-chairs the Regional Trail Committee in Iron County WI. She is married to Paul and has two sons, Scott and Mark.
Executive Committee Member-at-Large
"You may not end up where you thought you'd be, but you always end up where you're meant to be."
Candy was born and raised in the Milwaukee area and moved to Ashland after college. As a Social Worker with Ashland County, she works in nursing homes, home health, and hospice. Candy's second marriage brought her to the Hurley/Ironwood area 5 years ago, after she went on a blind date with Dr. Chris Pogliano married him and moved to SNOW country. Candy and Chris have a daughter Holly - a senior at the Hurley high school. They are also parents to Rosie (beagle), Mini (cat), Reba (horse), and several deer. According to Candy: "I LOVE sunshine, water and warm weather....BUT I guess I am meant to be here."
Paula Chermside is the Chief Operating Officer at Aspirus Grand View. She relocated to Ironwood from Alma, Michigan in 2013. Paula hold’s Master’s Degrees in Hospital and Healthcare Administration and Business Administration from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Michigan.
“I am honored to be a member of the Board because I believe it is important to provide cultural experiences and opportunities of the highest quality to attract and retain citizens in our communities. I have personally enjoyed the productions at the Ironwood Theatre and look forward to contributing to the Theatre's continuing success as a regional performing arts center".
Larry Gabka lives in Wakefield, MI with his wife Laurie and daughters Megan and Madeline. He earned a BS in Biology and a MS in Environmental Science and Policy from UW-Green Bay. Larry moved to the Ironwood area in 1996 when he became a faculty member at Gogebic Community College where he teaches Biology. Larry is a musician(trumpet) and has performed for a number of local productions including the Scarlet Pimpernell, Scrooge the Musical and Sweet Charity. Larry also serves as Director of the Gogebic Range Concert Band, a position he has held since January 2001.
"In addition to providing our community with entertainment through great programs, HIT gives local actors and musicians memorable performance opportunities. For this reason I am proud to serve on the HIT Board of Directors."
Nicole was born and raised in Bessemer, MI and now resides in Ironwood with her husband, Ryckie. She holds a BS in Psychology from Northland College and an MA in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Colorado State University. She works at Bretting Manufacturing in Ashland, WI as a change agent.
Nicole has participated in several productions at HIT and Theatre North as a member of various pit bands. The fine arts have always played a large part in Nicole’s life and she is grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the local arts community by serving as a member on HIT’s Board of Directors.
"The Historic Ironwood Theatre is an important community hub for the arts, providing quality entertainment and memorable experiences for residents of the Gogebic and Iron Range. I am dedicated to helping maintain the Theatre so that it remains available to provide wonderful experiences for all ages for years to come."
Bruce Greenhill is the Theatre’s Managing Director, a position he has proudly held since January 2012. A native of Melbourne, Australia, Bruce migrated to Northern Wisconsin’s Boulder Junction in the early 90s. A degree in social planning and rural community development from RMIT University served him well in former non-profit management positions. Theatre has always been an important part of Bruce's extra-curricular activities, so he jumped at the chance to combine his professional background in community development and non-profit management with an activity which over the years has occupied much of his personal time. Bruce claims to have two great loves - the theatre and his family (son Dylan, a college junior, and black lab, Nara). When asked what he loves most about the Theatre, he responded:
“The Ironwood Theatre occupies a special place in the hearts of so many people. I get to come to work everyday in a place where I am surrounded by people who are passionate about this theatre - what it's been, what it is, and what it can become. That's a nice place to be!"
Cathy was born and raised in Wakefield MI and now resides in Ironwood with her husband Steve, twin daughters Hannah & Vanessa, and 17-yr-old family pet Mishu. She holds a BA in nursing from the College of St Scholastica in Duluth, MN. A favorite quote of Cathy's is from Mahatma Ghandi: "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others." Now retired, she is blessed to be more active in her girls' lives. Both girls participate in Ironwood Theatre programs - experiences which Cathy believes to be a huge part of their growth and development.
"These are special times and special memories that I believe will help children gain confidence, develop friendships and inner strength they will draw on in the furture. The Ironwood Theatre is making a difference in childrens' lives."
Rick is a native of Ironwood who returned home after his college years and a little city living. He has raised two children - both have long flown the coop. He loves what the area has to offer in outdoor, cultural, and social activities. He has served on the Ironwood City Commission for the past 6 years, and is on a number of volunteer boards. Rick is the Ironwood City Commission representative on the Theatre board. He currently serves as chair of the theatre's Facility Maintenance committee.
"The Historic Ironwood Theatre has been a part of my life for most of it, even before it was historic. I am proud of the accomplishments of all who work to preserve it. The HIT has provided lasting memories for so many, especially the huge number of area kids who have performed on the stage."
Throughout her career in human services, Betsy Wesselhoft developed a unique ability to collaboratively promote positive outcomes. In the non-profit arena, Betsy brings to the Board a background in fundraising, management, board governance, program development and marketing. Formerly the board president, Betsy currently chairs the theatre's Fund Development Committee.
“My dedication to the Ironwood Theatre is strong because it connects people, promotes character and creates wonderful memories that last a lifetime.”