Download PDF

Annie Rezac

Department of Arts Education, Chicago Public Schools


  • Holds Masters of Fine Arts in Acting and a Bachelors of Science in Broadcast Communications
  • Works in central office management at 3rd largest school district in the country
  • Experienced Senior Manager at high-profile, non-profit organizations
  • Outcomes-driven, evidence-based strategic planner
  • Demonstrates successful track record of meeting financial and programmatic goals
  • Proven collaborator and partnership-builder

Work History

Oct 2015Present

Manager of Arts Professional Learning

Chicago Public Schools, Department of Arts Education

Facilitate the growth and sustainability of the CPS Arts Plan, which is designed to ensure that every student in Chicago has equitable access to a high quality arts education

  • Develop, recruit, and implement large-scale professional development events, as well as multiple professional learning communities for CPS arts teachers
    • Collect and utilize district-level data to inform program development 
    • Project manage all aspects of training event content and logistics
    • Manage complex multi-grant funded budget for professional learning
    • Align all training events to district priorities, standards, and best practices
    • Create and implement marketing plan for increased participation
      • Increased FY 17 kick-off event by 50% from previous year
  • Manage Key Performance Indicator (KPI) development and tracking for the Department of Arts Education
    • Lead Department of Arts Education team on strategic planning
    • Work consistently with Department Director on refining priorities, outcomes, and metrics for arts education performance management
  • Designed ARTview program and secured funding through the Terra Foundation for a professional learning community focused on quality arts instruction that is both relevant to student background/experience and driven by student voice
    • Completed ARTview Visual FY17 kick-off training with 35 certified visual arts teachers August 2016
    • Manage ARTview lead consultants, program facilitators, and institutional partnerships, including:
      • Art Institute of Chicago, National Musuem of Mexican Art, DuSable Museum of African American History, and Museum of Contemporary Photography
  • Manage the Creative Compass Program for CPS principals and assistant principals to become strong arts leaders for their schools
    • In FY 16, 100% of Creative Compass participants reported increased knowledge, skills, and implementation of new arts practices
  • Serve on the District Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) Committee to ensure every student in the district is receiving a high quality education
    • Served as leader of the FY17 Principal Institute for MTSS training
  • Serve as Program Director for ATLAS (Arts Teachers Leading Achievement and Success), a US Department of Education funded program that supports arts teachers in creating technology rich environments for their students
  •  Navigate relationship-building with multiple stakeholders in a complex environment that includes district management, teachers, parents, students, network chiefs, city officials and community arts partners
  • Collaborate with other core curriculum departments (math, literacy, science, civics) to effectively integrate arts across all content areas
Aug 2012Sep 2015

Senior Community Partnership Specialist

Communities In Schools of Chicago
  • Prospected, established, and maintained partnerships with more than 50 organizations that provide programs to CPS students including: The Art Institute of Chicago, Adventure Stage Chicago, Lyric Opera, Chicago Shakespeare, The Field Museum, and Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center
  • Oversaw a team of specialists that connect more than 180 community-based organizations providing  outreach programs to under-resourced Chicago Public Schools (CPS)
    • Led strategic planning (including objectives and measurable outcomes) for community partner team efforts and growth
      • In 2013-14, 182 partners were connected to schools reaching 61,000 students
  • Conceptualized, marketed, executed, and oversaw professional development program for community partners
    • In 2012, established the NAVIGATE training series for community-based organizations
      • Successfully executed more than 12 training events per year, including a full-day summer institute
      • Developed an outcomes framework to assess impact of NAVIGATE Training Series
      • 99.5% of attendees report that NAVIGATE is a relevant and important part of their professional development
      • Created and maintained a Wordpress site that acts as a resource library for community partner
  • Managed NAVIGATE budget and secured funding
    • Secured program funding from various foundations, primarily, Floyd A. Fry Foundation in 2013
    • Increased funding by 20% to grow program in 2015
  • Served on fundraising committee charged with events management and donor solicitation.
    • Presented at multiple events aimed at securing high-level donors
    • Worked with Board of Directors to plan events and identify funders
  • Audited and ensured quality of community partner programming through annual observations, developing a framework for best practices, and collecting/analyzing data
  • Engaged a variety of community organizations in cross-agency collaborations to develop new programs
    • Some collaborations include:
      • Illinois Holocaust Museum, The Peace Exchange, 4 CPS Schools and CIS of Chicago - addressing need for diversity and tolerance education in school environments
      • Lookingglass Theatre (Civic Practice Lab), Mental Health America of Illinois, Dominican University, and Crown Elementary - addressing need for social emotional skill building
May 2007Jun 2011

Director of Education

Metropolis Performing Arts Centre
  • Managed an interdisciplinary performing arts school serving more than 800 students per year
  • Collaboratively designed (with heads of music, acting, and dance departments) new curriculum and program models to support student growth and increased/sustained enrollment
    • Responsible for 30% increase in drama school enrollment in first year
    • Launched successful conservatory level for advanced students in 2009
  • Served as Artistic and Production Director for educational performances
  • Created, maintained, and implemented strategic business plan for the school which led to:
    • Restructuring of staff to streamline program and fiscal management
    • Decreased dependence on tuition fees through increased foundation and corporate funding
    • Increased scholarship opportunities for students
    • Improved community profile through branding and marketing efforts
  • Oversaw creation, implementation, and management of extensive outreach program
    • Reached 5,800 students with school-based and after school arts programming in 2008-2009
    • Developed professional learning network for in-school educators and teaching artists
  • Researched and implemented long-term assessment strategies for school and outreach
    • Created assessment tools based on new program model learning outcomes
    • Utilized collected data to improve programming and determine student learning pathways
  • Created and managed an annual 850,000 budget
  • Managed, hired and evaluated 55 faculty and 6 staff members
  • Executed monthly financial and board reports for the school
  • Established and maintained relationships with local schools and community organizations
  • Collaborated with other senior staff members on company programming and management
  • Assisted development department in the identification of available funding and grant opportunities
  • Assisted marketing department in the creation and implementation of a marketing plan for education
Jun 2011May 2013

Adjunct Faculty

William Rainey Harper College
  • Theatre and Speech Department - multiple courses
  • Directed mainstage theatre production - Fall 2012
Sep 2010May 2013

Adjunct Faculty

McHenry County College
  • Theatre and Speech Department - multiple courses
  • Directed mainstage theatre production - Fall 2011
May 2006Sep 2013


Metropolis Performing Arts Centre
  • Core Faculty
    • Taught core theatre classes for pre-school to Adult
  • Outreach Faculty
    • Created and taught: 
      • Production Companion Workshops based in the Lincoln Center Institute’s approach to aesthetic education that culminate in a viewing of a TYA production
      • Capacities for Imaginative Learning  workshop around the Holocaust for classroom educators
      • I-ACT Network Professional Development Workshops for in-school educators and teaching artists on arts integration 
      • Imperative Narrative: a 10-week intergenerational creative arts exchange based on oral histories
      • Arts Integration for Educators at Lake Forest Colleg
Jun 2000Jun 2002


Flynn Centre for the Performing Arts
  • Core Faculty
    • Taught core theatre classes for pre-school to 8th grades
  • Outreach Faculty
    • Taught school-based programs to support students' field trip experiences
    • Taught in City Arts after school program for students in K-3rd grades
Jun 2000Jun 2001

General Manager

Vermont Stage Company
  • Increased subscriber membership and improved VSC’s community profile
  • Implemented marketing and communications
  • Served as a liaison for visiting artists
  • Managed AEA contracts
  • Coordinated the Vermont Young Playwrights Festival ('00 & '01)
  • Organized and effectively ran VSC’s main office
  • Maintained database of subscribers and doners
Jun 1999Jun 2000

Tour Director/Actor

Missoula Children's Theatre
  • Taught a series of in school -based workshops for grades pre K-12th grades
  • Directed and performed with students in a national tour of Sleeping Beauty and Snow White



Sep 1996Jun 1999

Master of Fine Arts in Acting

Western Illinois University
Sep 1992Jun 1996

Bachelor of Science in Communications

East Stroudsburg University

Additional Training

2016                US Department of Education Annual Arts Grant Training

2014                Presenting Outcomes to Funders - Heartland Alliance

2013                Using the Arts to Unlock Student Potential - Michael Rohd

2011-              Chicago Arts Educator Forum 

2011                CAPE - Evaluation and Assessments for Arts Education - Arnold April

2010                Lincoln Center Institute Advanced Educator's Workshop

2010                Applied Theatre - Sarah Rose Graber

2010                Using Improvisation to Create Original Plays – Tim Stoltenberg

2009                Lincoln Center Institute International Educator’s Workshop

2003                Second City Training Center - Conservatory Program

2003                Sound Advice - Kate McLanaghan - Voice Over

2001                FlynnArts - Professional Development for Interdisciplinary Arts

2001                Double Edge Theatre - Realm of the Metaphor - Stacey Klein

1998                National Shakespeare Company Workshop Series