Meet the Faculty and Staff

CFA FACULTY AND STAFF 2019-2020

Specialty Center Director:  Dr. Stephanie Poxon

CFA Counselor:  Erica Daniels (Grades 10-12) & Tiffany Kremsreiter (Grade 9)

Production Assistant:  Michael Jones

Dance Faculty

Theresa Niermeyer, Lead Dance Instructor (Levels I, II, III & IV)

Musical Theatre Faculty

William (Billy) Dye, Lead Musical Theatre Instructor (Levels I, II & IV)

Morgan Day (Level III, CFA Show Choir, Company 302)

Tracy Moody (Dance)

Kim Fox (MT  Accompanist)

Theatre Faculty

Todd Ritter, Lead Theatre Instructor (Level I, II & III, Stagecraft)

Shanea N. Taylor (Level IV)

Visual Art Faculty

Mary Scurlock (Level II & IV)

Genevieve Dowdy (Level I & III)

 

A Little More About Who We Are    

Stephanie Poxon, Ph.D. – Director

Dr. Stephanie Poxon has served as the Director of the Center for the Arts (CFA) at Henrico High School (HHS) since 2009.  Prior to that, she was an instructor of AP Music Theory and CFA Musical Theatre as well as the pianist for HHS and CFA.  Dr. Poxon also held the rank of Adjunct Professor on the music faculties of the University of Central Florida, Virginia Commonwealth University, Randolph-Macon College; and was a Senior Music Specialist in the Music Division at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., where she was detailed to the Office of the Librarian and Office of Educational Outreach for the 2005-2006 “Song of America” tour featuring renowned baritone Thomas Hampson.  An expert in the field of twentieth-century American opera, she holds a Ph.D. in Musicology (with a minor in Music Theory) from the Catholic University of America, with a dissertation entitled “From Sketches to Stage: The Genesis of Samuel Barber’s Vanessa” (2005).  She earned her Master of Music (emphasis in Musicology) from the University of Florida in 1998 and a Bachelor of Music Education (summa cum laude) from the University of Central Florida in 1995.
Dr. Poxon has served as the Book Review Editor for American Music (University of Illinois Press) as well as Program Annotator for the Richmond Philharmonic Orchestra, and has presented papers at conferences of the American Musicological Society, the College Music Society, the National Council for the Social Studies, the Society for American Archivists, the Society for American Music, and the Library of Congress Treasure Talks Series.  She is a contributor to the Encyclopedia of the Blues (Routledge, 2005) and her work has been published in The Society for American Music Bulletin, The Library of Congress Information Bulletin, The Opera Journal, The Journal of Film Music, Social Education, the Song of America Website (www.songofamerica.net), and the Library of Congress Website (www.loc.gov).  Dr. Poxon sings in the soprano section of the Richmond Symphony Chorus (since 2007) and is a pianist for many schools, organizations and theatre companies in the greater Richmond area, including Virginia Repertory Theatre’s annual RTCC Awards Ceremony.

DANCE

Theresa Niermeyer –  Dance Teacher, Levels I, II, III & IV

Theresa Niermeyer, a native of Richmond, Virginia and an alumna of Henrico High School’s Center for the Arts, earned her BFA in Dance from The Ohio State University.  In 2012, Ms. Niermeyer traveled to Burkina Faso, West Africa, with the Baker-Tarapaga Dance Project to dance in the Nomad Express Festival held in Ouagadougou.  Inspired by her first trip to the African continent, Ms. Niermeyer has been awarded research grants to return three times to train, collaborate and teach with dancers in Burkina Faso, Zambia, and South Africa.  She also created and taught a class about “Dance in Global Contexts” to students at Fort Hayes Metropolitan Education Center in Columbus, OH.  In 2014, Ms. Niermeyer was awarded the Marian Wright Edelman Award for “passionate dedication to service and leadership” in the field of Education at Ohio State’s Annual Civic Engagement Banquet.  Upon graduation she re-located to Cape Town, South Africa, where she collaborated and performed with local artists, and taught at Happy Feet Youth Project, a community-run Arts program for at-risk youth.  Ms. Niermeyer returned to Center for the Arts in 2015 as the part-time dance teacher and was promoted to the Lead Dance Teacher in 2016.  Ms. Niermeyer is thrilled to continue sharing her love of movement with the incredible students of this amazing CFA program.

MUSICAL THEATRE

Billy Dye – Lead Musical Theatre Teacher, Levels I, II, and IV

Billy Dye earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Shenandoah Conservatory of Music (now Shenandoah University) and an MM from Virginia Commonwealth University.  He served as Vocal Supervisor at Williamsburg VA’s Busch Gardens for numerous years.  While there he coached, wrote and directed a variety of shows and vocal styles.  Billy was the music coordinator for the National Red Cross Convention, which included conducting a 1,000-voice chorus and orchestra; the music advisor for former Governor Gilmore’s Inaugural Prayer Breakfast; and the guest conductor for the Richmond City All-Elementary School Choir.  Not limited to Virginia, Billy’s artistic influence can be heard as far as Branson, Missouri.  Billy’s varied background and experiences in the arts are said to make an unquestionable contribution to the growth and development of young, well-rounded performers and musicians.  As a result of this contribution, while under his artistic direction, The Richmond Boys Choir was a recipient of the Theresa Pollack Award for Excellence in the Arts and a “Coming Up Taller” award granted by the National Endowment for the Arts as a noteworthy youth focused after-school program.  Under Billy’s direction the ensemble proudly performed at the White House award ceremony.
Mr. Dye leads an active music, theatre, film and TV performance career; credits include a small role in the film The Contender, the PBS documentary Nat Turner…a Troublesome Property, a national Kmart commercial featuring gospel artist Cece Winan and numerous local plays, commercials, and radio voice-overs.  His theatre performance credits include recent roles in Virginia Repertory Theatre’s award-winning productions of The Color Purple and Dreamgirls and AARTs productions of Crowns and Mahalia.  Other performance credits include U of R’s production of Company as Paul, productions of Smokey Joes Café and Ain’t Misbehavin’, Schroeder in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, Papa Ge in Once On This Island, Pish-Tush in The Mikado, Marshall in the world premiere of Four Part Harmony and Eubie Blake in Barksdale’s world premiere of Charles Strouse’s Bojangles.  Other favorites include Balthazar in Romeo and Juliet, Marcellus in The Music Man, and Rev. Moore in VCU’s I Am a Man.  Billy also maintains an active direction, choreography and musical direction schedule including work on professional productions of Blues in the Night, The Taffetas, Beehive and Dreamgirls.
He is presently on the faculty of SPARCs-Live Art, a groundbreaking inclusive arts education program for students with and without disabilities where he conducts the Singing Hands Choir, a singing and signing (ASL) vocal ensemble.
Morgan Day – Musical Theatre Teacher, Level III, CFA Show Choir, Company 302 and Henrico High Choral Director

Morgan Day has been the Director of Choral Activities since fall of 2007 and teaches the Level III Musical Theatre class.  Mr. Day was selected by Richmond Magazine’s 2017 “Best and Worst” edition as the Best Choral Director in Richmond, VA.  In addition to teaching at Henrico High and the Center for the Arts, Mr. Day is a music director and mentor for CharacterWorks Theater and the Minister of Music at North Run Baptist Church.  He and his wife hail from Missouri and have three grown children and two grandchildren.  His favorite quote is “Nothing will work unless you do.”  – Mayo Angelou

THEATRE

Todd Ritter – Lead Theatre Teacher, Levels I, II & III, Stagecraft
Todd Ritter has been the Lead Theatre teacher for the Center for the Arts since 2000.  He holds an MFA from the University of Minnesota and a BA from St. Mary’s College of Maryland.  Mr. Ritter was a 2019 recipient of the Community Foundation’s R.E.B. Award for Teaching Excellence, winning a grant that allowed him to further his theatre education and study mask making in Italy.   He was also the recipient of a 2010 University of Richmond School of Continuing Studies Partners in the Arts grant which facilitated a campus wide look at tolerance and funded a production of The Diary of Anne Frank.  As the Henrico High School Lead Drama club sponsor, he is proud of his students’ many accomplishments, including becoming the Virginia Theatre Association’s State Champion in 2005 and 2008.  Outside of school, Mr. Ritter frequently serves as a director for CharacterWorks as well as for SPARC’s New Voices for the Theatre.  Mr. Ritter is a proud husband and father of two incredible kids.  He is a devoted Steelers fan who enjoys traveling, eating chocolate, drinking coffee and attempting to play golf.
Shanea N. Taylor – Theatre teacher, Level IV

 

Shanea N. Taylor has an MFA in Theatre Pedagogy/Directing from Virginia Commonwealth University. Taylor has a long history of being onstage, but finds her passion for education, storytelling and helping all free their voice, “we must tell our own stories” taking priority. She is currently an adjunct professor of Communication, Public Speaking, and Theatre at John Tyler Community College where she also directed She Kills Monsters, and Dark of the Moon. Taylor has experience in helping corporations train their associates with phone etiquette, public speaking, and leadership; directed SPARC:  Festival of New Voices; was a teaching artist/director for Quill Theatre:  Festival Young Company; and served as director/acting coach for King’s Dominion Carnivale, Haunt, and Winterfest.  She directed the award-winning world premiere of Neon Man and Me written by Slash Coleman, The Amen Corner at Heritage Ensemble Theatre Company, For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide / When the Rainbow is Enuf for Heritage and Firehouse Theatre, and Before It Hits Home for Sycamore Rouge/Richmond Triangle Players. One of Taylor’s proudest moments was when she served as Co-Director/Master of Play and helped launch Will Power to Youth (a replication program with Richmond Shakespeare and LA Shakespeare.) Will Power to Youth is a nationally recognized, award-winning job and training program.  This initiative is committed to developing, enriching, and employing young people to work their way through a Shakespeare play. 

VISUAL ARTS

Mary Scurlock – Co-Lead Visual Arts Teacher, Levels II & IV

Mary Scurlock is a painter and mixed media artist who currently lives in Richmond, VA. She teaches in the Center for the Arts and the International Baccalaureate programs in Henrico County Public Schools. She was recipient of the Virginia Commission for the Arts Fellowship, 2001, Secondary Art Teacher of the Year for the State of Virginia, 2006 and was a Semi-Finalist in the Bethesda Painting Award, 2010. She was a recipient of the 2012 Surdna Art Teachers Fellowship which allowed her to attend the artist and writers residency La Muse in Southern France.  Her work is included in the public collections of the Federal Reserve Bank, B&B Printing, First Market Bank, Media One, Markel Corporation, and Capital One. 1996-2008 she served as an artist member on the board of the non-profit gallery 1708 and currently is active on the emeritus board.  She has exhibited extensively in both group and solo shows in New York and Richmond.
Genevieve Dowdy – Co-Lead Visual Arts Teacher, Levels I & III

Genevieve Dowdy is a graduate of VCU Arts school with a BFA in Arts Education and a graduate of University of Richmond with an MLA in Interdisciplinary Humanities. She has been teaching high school art since 1999, and CFA Studio courses and AP Art History at the CFA since 2006. She is co-chair of the Henrico High School Advanced Placement teacher committee as well Professional Development Coordinator for CFA’s Arts-Infused Academic Programs. She was recipient of the Secondary Art Teacher of the Year for the Central Region of Virginia in 2011 and the AP Fellows Scholarship in 2015. When she is not working as a mixed media artist in her home studio or traveling to AP and Humanities conferences, she enjoys hiking, biking and traveling with her husband Jeff, son Kylan and rescue dogs Josie and Ross.

SUPPORT STAFF

Michael Jones – Production Assistant

Michael is an accomplished musician, performer, graphic designer, writer, director and an Alumnus for the Center for The Arts. He has taught for Richmond’s CharacterWorks Theater and has assisted in several productions. Michaels has also performed in Richmond’s production of CATS and is currently the pianist for OEDIPUS, A GOSPEL MYTH running at the Firehouse Theater.
Sarah Sluss – Office Assitant