Leadership Bios

Courtney Sale

Nancy L. Donahue Artistic Director

Courtney Sale joins MRT after serving as the Artistic Director of Seattle Children's Theatre (SCT), the nation’s leading generator of new work for young audiences. At SCT, she directed Black Beauty, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, and The Little Prince. Commissioned writers under her tenure include Idris Goodwin, Cheryl West, Allison Gregory, Karen Hartman, Trista Baldwin, Ramon Esquivel, and James Still. Recent directing projects: Tiny Beautiful Things at Seattle Rep, the world premiere of Steven Dietz’s The Ghost of Splinter Cove at Children’s Theatre of Charlotte, and Ellen Fairey’s Support Group for Men at Contemporary American Theatre Festival (CATF). Other credits include The Cake; Wild Horses; Not Medea (CATF); Mr. Burns, A Post Electric Play; On Clover Road (The Phoenix Theater); Twelfth Night and The Tempest (Indy Shakes); and Zen Prayers & Songs (Fusebox), written and performed by Kirk Lynn.

Prior to SCT, she spent three years as Associate Artistic Director at Indiana Repertory Theatre, where directing credits include the world premiere of April 4, 1968:  Before We Forgot How to Dream, The Mountaintop, The Mousetrap, Jackie & Me, And Then They Came for Me, The Giver, and two iterations of A Christmas Carol. With the Duplicates, she co-created The Fictional Life of Historical Oddities, September Play, The Man with the Dancing Eyes, and The Poison Squad (Austin Critics Award). She has developed new work at Denver Center Theatre Company’s Summit New Play Festival, The New Harmony Project, Write Now, Dorset Theatre Festival, TheatreWorks (Palo Alto), New Plays for Young Audiences at NYU/Provincetown Playhouse, and The Orchard Project.

Other distinctions included Indianapolis Business Journal’s Forty Under Forty designation, Cornish College of the Arts Distinguished Alumni Award, and the keynote speaker at the 2017 International Council of Fine Arts Deans. She has taught at Summer at Cornish College of the Arts, Seattle Children’s Museum, Temple College, and the University of Texas at Austin.

Ms. Sale is a proud member of the National Theatre Conference and the theatrical union the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. She is represented by Abrams Artists NYC. BFA, Cornish College of the Arts. MFA, The University of Texas at Austin.


Bonnie J. Butkas

Executive Director

Bonnie most recently served as the Senior Director of Foundation Relations at Rochester Institute of Technology, where she led the university’s strategic efforts to secure funding from private and family foundations. During her tenure, RIT secured its first significant gifts from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Henry Luce Foundation. Prior to RIT, she was the Director of Development at Geva Theatre Center in Rochester, NY overseeing five years of unprecedented growth in the company’s contributed income and playing a key role in a successful $10 million capital campaign to renovate the building and grow the theatre’s endowment.

In New York City, she served as the Director of External Relations at the York Theatre Company, the Director of Development and Communications at TADA! Youth Theatre, Directing Assistant on The Lion King on Broadway, and the co-founder of Lexington Dance Collective. Prior to moving to NYC, she was the Managing Director of Bristol Valley Theater in Naples, NY. Butkas was raised in the Finger Lakes region of Western New York and holds degrees in Journalism and Dance from the University at Buffalo. She volunteered with the Association of Fundraising Professionals of Genesee Valley, Girls Scouts of Western New York, and the YWCA of Rochester & Monroe County. In Fall 2016, she co-founded Action Together Rochester, an all-volunteer organization that fights for progressive causes in the greater Rochester region.