NEW MASK/VAX POLICY! All patrons over 12 years of age at films or live performances at The Smith scheduled through Dec. 31, 2021 are required to wear a mask AND be vaccinated or show proof of a negative COVID test*. Children 12 years old or younger are required to wear a mask. Depending on the nature of the show, patrons may be allowed to remove their mask once seated in the theatre. Policies are subject to change at any time without notice; however, we will make every effort to contact ticketholders to alert them of changes to this policy. *We strongly recommend the use of the New York State Excelsior Pass Wallet app available from your app store. This app shows vaccine data and test results and will make admission to The Smith go smoothly.

Board of Directors/Annual Report

2020 Board of Directors


Mitchell Wilber, Chair
Mitch is a lifelong resident of western New York with a career centered around various aspects of production agriculture. He is a graduate of Brown University and is married to Aliceann Wilber, the remarkable coach of the William Smith College soccer team. The couple have two adult children who are doing interesting things in Nashville and Washington, D.C. He has been a member of the Smith board since 2011. He has a long history of taking on community and civic roles with other organizations: the Geneva City School District Board of Education (past president), the Town of Geneva Planning Board, Geneva Generals Hockey Organization and the Geneva Soccer Club. He is also the former president of the New York State Agri-Business Association.

Vinny Aliperti, Vice Chair
A 5-year member of The Smith’s Board of Directors, Vinny currently holds the role of Vice Chair of the Board and is Chair of The Smith’s Nominating Committee.  He and his wife, Kim, are co-owners of Billsboro Winery in Geneva.
Vinny is also the winemaker for Atwater Vineyards in Burdett.
For Vinny, work and family life “is full but satisfying.”

Stephanie Hesler, Treasurer

Stephanie Hesler is a Development Assistant at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. In her role she supports the frontline fundraising team of the Advancement Office. Previously she worked as the Performing Arts Coordinator in the Gearan Center for the Performing Arts.

Before coming to the colleges, Stephanie worked as the Development Officer for Finger Lakes Visiting Nurse Service and Ontario-Yates Hospice, and in development, programming and membership roles for Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways.

Stephanie currently serves as the Vice President of the Geneva Rotary Board of Directors and is Co-Advisor for the Rotaract Club at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. Stephanie holds a B.A. in Communications Studies from SUNY Oswego, and a Certificate in Non-Profit Management from St. John Fisher College.

Stephanie and her husband Stephen live in Geneva and have two college-age sons. In addition to spending time with friends and family, Stephanie enjoys managing “Hesler Woodworking,” a fledgling family business. She also enjoys reading, attending performing arts events, running, spending time outside and watching sunsets at the Seneca Yacht Club – weather permitting!

Kelby Russell, Secretary
Kelby first became involved with The Smith through his role planning the Scott LaFaro Celebration Concert from its first iteration in 2015. After being invited to serve on the Board, he and Joan Grela co-chaired the Executive Director Search Committee that resulted in the hiring of Susie Monagan, and he was asked to serve as Secretary starting in 2018. Kelby’s first passion will always be music. His career path while studying at Harvard University was Orchestra Management, so his Board involvement is a particularly rewarding complement to his day job of winemaking.


Martha Bond
Martha and her husband Jerry have lived in Geneva for 20 years and have deep family roots throughout the Finger Lakes. A graduate of Mt. Holyoke College, she held various positions in healthcare administration in Rochester before moving to the community in 2000. The following year, she joined Hobart and William Smith Colleges as Director of Grants, a position from which she retired in 2016.
Martha became a member of the Smith Board in 2014 and currently serves as chair of the Grants Committee, as well as a member of the Buildings/Grounds and Membership/Annual Support committees. She and Jerry have two married children and three grandchildren.

Rebecca (Becky) Burditt
Becky joined The Smith’s Board in 2018 after serving on its Film Committee since 2016. She programmed the Voting Rights Film Series in 2018, and has facilitated numerous collaborations with Hobart and William Smith Colleges faculty to bring films to The Smith that support the themes of their courses.
Becky is an Assistant Professor in the Media and Society Program at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva. She teach courses on the history of advertising, global musicals and media and theory.

Joan Sullivan Grela
Joan has been a member of the Smith Board of Directors for almost ten years.  Joan previously served as Chief of Staff for State Senator Michael Nozzolio before retiring in 2016.
In addition to the Smith Board of Directors, Joan also serves on the Ability Partners Board of Directors, the Finger Lakes Health Foundation Board of Directors and is a member of the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester Community Action Committee.
Joan has three children: Megan Castro, Marissa Ryan and Michael Grela and spends lots of time with her seven grandchildren: Jesse, Travis, Emily & Elyse Castro and Mirabelle, Sullivan and Fitzgerald Ryan and great-granddaughter Gabriella Castro.

Murray Heaton

Beth Johnson

Beth Johnson, Ph.D. E-RTY is professor of speech and theatre at Finger Lakes Community College and chair of the Visual and Performing Arts Department. As a theatre practitioner and scholar, she has taught a wide range of classes including; acting, design for the stage, voice, mime, theatre history and dramatic literature.  The past twenty-two at FLCC have allowed her to direct, design lighting and costumes for several productions each year. With a bachelor’s degree from Belmont University, a master’s from Indiana State University, and an earned doctorate from the University of Georgia, she has been able to work in a variety of venues including; Opryland, Highlands Playhouse in NC, Tennessee Repertory Theatre, Georgia Rep., and a brief stint at Disney World. She is a member of several-professional organizations including; the Association of Theatre in Higher Education, the Association of Theatre Movement Educators, and the Stage Directors and Choreographer’s Society.

Nancy McDermott

Mara O’Laughlin
Mara joined the Smith Board right after retiring from Hobart and William Smith in 2013. A native of New York City and a graduate of William Smith College, she was first employed as a Social Studies teacher at the Romulus Central School from 1967-1972. She then returned to her alma mater where she served as Director of Admissions for 31 years. In 2006, she assumed the position of Assistant Vice President for Advancement, leading the William Smith Centennial and then securing funding for the Gearan Center for the Performing Arts. The Colleges recognized her service with its highest honor: Doctor of Humane Letters in 2013.
Smith Board service has included Chair, Membership and Annual Support; Member: Grants, Nominating, and 125th Committees.
Her family includes partner Joanne Goff; two step-sons, Ryan and Benjamin; and three grandsons: Kian, Grayson, and Asher Goff.

Harrison Schutzer
Harrison currently works with a team of professionals at MRB Group to serve local governments across the State of New York. In his role as Business Development Coordinator, he manages web and social media presence, in addition to coordinating events for the firm and its clients. His experience includes working for the New York State Legislature, serving under Senators Michael Nozzolio and Simcha Felder. Harrison graduated from Hobart College with a B.A.. in Public Policy and Political Science.
He chose to establish his home and pursue a career in the Finger Lakes region.

Anthony (Tony) Shelton
Tony joined the board in 2016 and serves on the Grants Committee. He’s been a long-term supporter of The Smith and previously served on the Board of Directors for Geneva Concerts and the Geneva School Board. Tony is an International Professor at Cornell and is the Director for a USAID-funded project in Bangladesh.
When not traveling, he enjoys spending time sailing, fishing and biking in the Finger Lakes.

S. Ford Weiskittel





2017 Annual Report