Join us in remembering Trish Pugh Jones (1940–2019), crucial member of the leadership team whose service extended far beyond her first title of publicity director.
Pugh Jones arrived in Louisville in 1969 to join newly-appointed Producing Artistic Director Jon Jory and Executive Director Alexander “Sandy” Speer.
Jory recently shared,
“At the beginning there was only Trish, Sandy, myself and a secretary. That was the staff that first summer. Trish handled all the publicity and the subscription drive. Not knowing the city, she set up over sixty coffee parties for me. Had she not been as hard driving as she was we would have never opened in the fall and the theatre would have closed. No Trish, no Actors Theatre, period. What she did later was remarkable. What she did at the beginning was miraculous. There is no way to explain what she accomplished.”
(Pictured above: Trish Pugh Jones, Jon Jory and Sandy Speer.)
Pugh Jones went on to serve as Associate Director working tirelessly to steward the emerging young company into the respected and nationally-recognized company it is today. Her tenure saw the move from the theatre’s home at the train station to the newly-renovated Bank of Louisville building on Main Street, the Theatre’s official designation as “The State Theatre of Kentucky” from then-Governor Wendell Ford and the groundbreaking partnership with Humana, Inc. in creating the Humana Festival of New American Plays.
(Left to right: Trish Pugh Jones with Sandy Speer; Editorial cartoon from The Courier-Journal cartoonist Hugh Haynie above a farewell letter written by Jon Jory and Sandy Speer, published in 1981 when Trish left Actors the first time,)
The staff, artists, volunteers and audiences of Actors Theatre are indebted to her dedication. Her commitment lives on with the Actors Theatre Associates, the service guild she founded at the Theatre.
Trish left Actors Theatre and Louisville in 1981. Years later she returned and continued her service to Louisville’s cultural community by working for Louisville Orchestra, Fund for the Arts, Cathedral Heritage Foundation and others. She returned to Actors Theatre in 2003, serving as the Theatre’s capital campaign coordinator. In 2010, she and her husband David Jones moved to Cornwall, England and then later to Wales.
Gifts in honor of Trish Pugh Jones’s life may be made to Actors Theatre of Louisville to further Trish’s passion for engaging the Louisville community in the arts. Actorstheatre.org/giving or mail to: Actors Theatre of Louisville, Attn: Development, 316 W. Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202.