Kelly Marie Schaefer to receive Kennedy Center Gold Medallion

Portrait of Kelly Schaefer
Kelly Schaefer. (Submitted photo)

Kelly Marie Schaefer, professor of teaching at Iowa State University in the Department of Music and Theatre, will receive the Kennedy Center Gold Medallion at the Region 5 Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in Des Moines, Iowa in January 2024.

The Kennedy Center Gold Medallion is the most prestigious award given by KCACTF and is considered one of the greatest honors in educational theatre. According to the KCACTF website, the Gold Medallion “honors individuals or organizations that have made extraordinary contributions to the teaching and producing of theatre and who have significantly dedicated their time, artistry, and enthusiasm to the development of KCACTF.”

Schaefer serves on the regional advisory board for Region 5 KCACTF as the current hospitality coordinator for the festival. She has also served as the chair of design, technology, and management and production respondent. Schaefer is the resident costume designer for ISU Theatre. She also teaches courses in costume design, costume technology, and makeup design as well as mentors student designers.

“I am very grateful to receive this honor from an organization that does so much to support and encourage students in theatre,” Schaefer said. “I benefited from KCACTF programs as a student and am excited to share the KCACTF experience with my students as an educator.”

KCACTF is a national organization affiliated with the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. The organization celebrates and encourages excellence in college and university theatre across the country. Region 5 includes colleges and universities in Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, and Missouri.