JEDI (Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion)
Main Street Theater believes equity, inclusion, and diversity initiatives are central to ensuring all artists have equitable opportunity to theatrical work in Houston while helping audiences to engage more deeply with the wide range of stories and ideas presented on our stages. We encourage the participation of all Houstonians in the work we create. We want our work to reflect the communities we serve. We want to accommodate artists and audience members of different abilities throughout our company, and we want there to be no physical, financial, or emotional barriers to our stages.
We work to accomplish this by fostering an atmosphere of compassion and inclusiveness. We will create and maintain opportunities for engagement and discourse. We will actively examine our systems to identify barriers and seek ways to remove them. The work on our stages must reflect the community in which we exist and respect the dignity of all its members, and our work with children must be infused with these values.
Katricia Lang (she/her) is a writer with a deep commitment to expanding advocacy efforts among diverse populations and fostering spaces for dialogue, support, and awareness. With a specific focus on special populations in mental health, Katricia is dedicated to creating inclusive environments for individuals facing unique challenges.
An active member of the Houston theater community since 2013, she began her journey as a marketing director for Back Porch Players. She later assumed the roles of managing editor and critic for BroadwayWorld Houston, with a focus on racial, ethnic, and neurodevelopmental diversity in both staff and content.
Beyond the world of theater, she is a certified mental health advocate with experience providing crisis intervention and support to those facing personal, social, or behavioral challenges within special populations. Katricia regularly conducts classes and informational sessions on mental health recovery, with a particular emphasis on serving marginalized communities. She is a proud member of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Texas Public Policy Committee and, with NAMI Texas, co-coordinated “Protect Yourself: Safeguarding Mental Health from Racial & Ethnic Trauma,” a town hall designed to facilitate crucial dialogues on mental health challenges faced by communities of color and special populations.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Visual and Dramatic Arts from Rice University and a Master of Fine Arts in Screenwriting from Houston Baptist University.
Brandon Mack (he/him) is an activist, organizer, angelic troublemaker, and entrepreneur. He is the founder/owner of B.Mack Strategies, LLC, a consulting company that provides education and training related to Equity, Inclusion, and Diversity., college admission consulting, political consulting, dialogue and meeting facilitation services, and public speaking services. Mack has worked on EID issues in higher education, the arts, and government for over 15 years. He is a recognized activist and community advocate focusing on issues related to Education, Racial Justice, and LGBTQ+ issues. Mack holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from Rice University, a Master’s in Higher Education Administration & Supervision from the University of Houston, and is currently working on a Doctorate in Higher Education Leadership & Policy studies from the University of Houston. His research focuses on student support services for LGBTQ+ students at Historically Black Colleges & Universities.
Dabrina Sandifer Speaker. Writer. Producer. Consultant. Poet. Student of Life. Dabrina Sandifer serves through arts, advocacy, education, trauma informed care, substance abuse recovery, crisis intervention, and community development via affordable housing.
She has done commissioned poetry, DEIA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Access) facilitation, program evaluation, team building, personality assessment, executive coaching, strategic visioning, occupational wellness, etc. for organizations throughout the country.
Her education includes HSPVA, UH-Central, Diversity/Equity/Inclusion, and Rice University’s Leadership Institute for Nonprofit Executives. She is currently completing her PhD as well as pursuing additional professional development on the intersectionality of neurodivergence, the workplace, and creative industries.
She has held positions of leadership, is a certified Mental Health First Aider, and is the Founding Executive Artistic Director & Programming Manager for Esurient Arts successfully coordinating professional development opportunities for artists led by industry professionals working in major markets. This has included artists who have won or been nominated for Tony and Emmy awards.
Esurient Arts provides entertainment for private & corporate events, curates exhibitions, and produces. With a focus on under-represented narratives, Esurient Arts has collaborated with arts entities including Mildred’s Umbrella, Vincent Victoria Presents, and Emmy award winning & former “Project Runway” contestant Alan Gonzalez of Alantude fashion brand. Esurient Arts also has programming that merges
the arts with social determinants of health. This evidence based programming helps to decrease social isolation and increase access to the arts. This also combats dementia, depression, and more.
Volunteer work includes serving on nonprofit boards alongside noted individuals including music producer Bryan Michael Cox and Ashley Tamar Davis (and former protégé of musician Prince). As a multidisciplinary arts practitioner, she encourages all to “Live on purpose and your purpose will live on.”
G. Armando Silva
G. Armando Silva is a former professional dancer & choreographer with the Dallas Black Dance Theatre (DBDT). Currently he serves as Executive Director for Multicultural Education and Counseling through the Arts (MECA) and has worked as an arts administrator for the past 17 years with organizations including, the Dallas Black Dance Theatre, and Voices Breaking Boundaries. Mr. Silva is a 2009 graduate of the National Association of Latino Arts and Culture’s Leadership Institute.
As Executive Director, Armando is responsible for daily operations of MECA’s arts education and outreach programs at its headquarters in the Historic Dow School and East End campus at the former Talento Bilingue de Houston Center (TBH). Additionally, he curates the performing arts series, MECA Presents and chairs the annual dia de muertos festival.
Growing up in Houston, he attended the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and later Southern Methodist University in Dallas and The Ailey School in New York City on scholarship. In his free time, he enjoys bowling in Houston area International Gay Bowling Organization (IGBO) leagues.
Social Media Handles:
Facebook – MECAHouston
IG – meca_houston
Twitter – MECA_Houston
Steps we are taking to create an equitable theater:
- Members of our Executive Management and Senior Staff have received training through Art Equity and continue to belong to accountability cohorts.
- In June 2021, we hired our first Artistic Inclusion and Community Engagement Director.
- Main Street Theater’s Theater for Youth made an institutional commitment to be an Anti-Racist and Anti-Oppressive organization through TYA / USA .
- In August 2021, we launched our diversity panel which engages members of our organization and marginalized individuals in the community.
- In February 2022, we launched our JEDI Artist Fellowship Program.
- In August 2023, we created and hired our first JEDI Council, a group of four community professionals not connected with Main Street Theater, who meet monthly with our Executive Artistic Director and Theater for Youth Artistic Director to advise and assess both situations that may arise with personnel and guide us toward implementing better practices.
We know there is much more to be done. We continue to work hard at making Main Street Theater an equitable place for all.