Celebrating outstanding and creative leadership.

white woman with short hair, bold necklace
We are fortunate to have dedicated artists, audiences and donors who have enabled our theaters to outlast the pandemic and to flourish again. We've learned to appreciate more fully what we have so badly missed, and now celebrate the return of live theatre to enrich our community. The vitality of regional theatre depends on our commitment, inspired by creative and passionate leadership.
Jane Lang
Founder and Chair Emerita, Atlas Performing Arts Center

Victor Shargai Leadership Award

The Victor Shargai Leadership Award was established by Craig Pascal to honor his late husband, beloved DC-area theatre champion Victor Shargai. For decades Victor was an avid supporter of the Washington, DC region’s theatre community and its artists. A former long-time chair and member of the Theatre Washington Board of Directors, Victor played a key role in the production of many of the annual Helen Hayes Awards. He was also well-known for his support and championing of many theatre institutions, and the theatre community at large, in the region.

The award will recognize outstanding and creative leadership and will be given to an individual, group, or institution that has strengthened the DC region’s theatre community through initiative, collaboration, advocacy, and/or personal generosity—in a specific moment, or over an extended period of time. Their impact can be at an organizational, industry, or regional level. 

2022 Timeline

February - Award nominations open
March 31 -  Nominations close
Spring  - Recipient & Honoree Announcement
October 17  – Victor Shargai Leader Award Celebration


To Nominate A Candidate

Candidates for The Victor Shargai Leadership Award may be nominated by individuals or organizations active in the DC regional theatre community. Individuals or organizations may also nominate themselves. One person or organization may not nominate more than one candidate in a single year.

Nominations must be completed by Thursday, March 31, 2022.

Victor Shargai Leadership Award Celebration

The inaugural Victor Shargai Leadership Award Celebration will be held on October 17, 2022 at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library (901 G. Street, NW). The event will also serve as a fundraiser for Theatre Washington and the Helen Hayes Awards and sponsorships will be available.

Victor Shargai

Victor Shargai was born in New York City in 1936 where he had an acting career from a young age in stage, television, and radio productions. He later studied interior design and practiced as a designer in New York and Washington, DC for over 40 years. He established his own design firm with his late partner, John Aniello, Jr., in 1973 and worked throughout the continental United States. He devoted much effort and many years to numerous arts-associated endeavors. He served on the boards of The Washington Ballet, Studio Theatre, founding member of the Kennedy Center Friends Board, and was the long-time chair of Theatre Washington. Victor was immensely proud of the artistic excellence of the Washington Theatre community which was demonstrated in his unwavering support for the value of recognition and celebration through his support of the prestigious Helen Hayes Awards. Mr. Shargai was also a devoted reader of Jane Austen and other 19th Century literature. He resided at the Watergate with his husband, M. Craig Pascal.

Advancement Committee

Abby Fenton (Committee Co-Chair)
Executive Director & Chief External Affairs Officer
Whitman-Walker Foundation

John Hauge (Committee Co-Chair)
Chief Financial Officer
The Global LPG Partnership 

Craig Pascal
Retired Washingtonian
Community Development Banking

Abel Lopez (Chair, Theatre Washington)
Associate Producing Director
GALA Hispanic Theatre

Jane Lang
The Eugene Lang Foundation
Founder and Chair Emerita, Atlas Performing Arts Center

Andrew Ammerman
Fund for the Future of Our Children
CEO, Ammerman Investments

Jeff Banks
Vice President of Commercial Services
United Bank

Stacie Banks
Lee’s Flower and Card Shop 

Michael W. Bigley
The Venable Foundation 

Michael Burke
Board Member
Constellation Theatre Company

Susan Butler
Chair Emerita and Member Board of Trustees
Studio Theatre

Claire Carlin
Vice President of Partnership and Alliance
Destination DC

Jill Collins
Jill Collins Public Relations

Jan Du Plain
Du Plain Global Enterprises

David Grosso
Arent Fox

Shayla Hines
Director of Institutional Relations
Arena Stage 

Catherine Leggett
Senior Vice President of Human Resources
Mission Square

Sheila Alexander-Reid
Senior Vice President Business Development

Serra Sippel
Chief Global Advocacy Officer
òs Feminista

Bonnie Nelson Schwartz
Theatre and Film Producer
Founder, Helen Hayes Awards

Carl Smith
Anderson Hopkins Award for Excellence in the Theater Arts