Every weekend, Arena Stage will celebrate the transformative power of education and the invaluable role of educators as part of our current production, Tempestuous Elements. The world-premiere play portrays the inspiring journey of Anna Julia Cooper, an esteemed educator, scholar, and advocate for social justice, who exemplified resilience, determination, and a deep commitment to uplifting marginalized communities through education. This powerful drama emphasizes the pivotal role educators play in shaping lives and fighting for educational equity, freedom, and legitimacy, underscoring the importance of their contributions to society.

Inspired by Anna Julia Cooper, Arena similarly wants to give back to modern-day education heroes by inviting them to a performance and publicly recognizing their critical role in our community. By honoring educators who embody Anna Julia Cooper’s courage, empathy, and pursuit of intellectual excellence, we pay homage to her enduring legacy and advance her vision of education as a catalyst for societal progress and liberation.

Dr. Grace Holloman Davis
Saturday, February 24 @ 2pm

Dr. Grace Holloman Davis is known throughout the District for her unwavering dedication and her selfless service. Dr. Davis holds degrees from Miner Teachers College, the University of Chicago, and George Washington University. She taught math at Shaw Junior High School and Cardozo High School before working as Director of Grants for DC Public Schools. Her illustrious career culminated in retirement from the George Washington University Budget Office/Director of Administration in 1979. Beyond her professional achievements, Dr. Davis served as the Past Vice President of the Junior Department of Lott Carey Baptist Foreign Mission Convention and as a Golden Soror of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. She was recognized for her enduring legacy of love, energy, and service to the community when May 23, 2012 was declared as “Dr. Grace Holloman Davis Day” in D.C.

Dr. LaMar Bagley

Dr. LaMar Bagley has been working in the creative and performing arts for
over 30 years as an actor, technician, producer, director, arts administrator, arts
educator and arts integration specialist. For the last 18 years he has served as the Producing Artistic Director of the internationally recognized SEED Falcon Theatre at The SEED School of Washington, D.C., where he also works as the Director of Experiential Learning and External Opportunities. Under his tutelage, The American High School Theater Festival recognized The SEED Falcon Theatre, as one of the top theatre programs in the nation (2016, 2019, 2020) and invited Dr. Bagley and the program to perform at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival representing the United States. His work in arts education was also recognized by Music Theater International in 2018 with the Freddie G Fellowship; an honor bestowed upon America’s top arts educators producing musical theatre for youth. In January 2021, Dr. Bagley was recognized as Arts Educator of the Decade, in the D.C. region, by the 2020 Broadway World Regional Awards. In Spring 2023, Dr. Bagley was one of four teachers, from across the nation, invited to The White House to be recognized by Ford’s Theatre Society, President Biden, and First Lady Dr. Biden for his sacrifice, selflessness, and compassion as teacher and his commitment to providing students with a well-rounded education

Dr. Mildred L. Musgrove

Dr. Mildred L. Musgrove (Nee: Satterwhite) is a retired DC Public School educator who served in the DC Public Schools for over 33 years. Dr. Musgrove has been a senior high school teacher, curriculum writer-in-residence, instructional supervisor, principal of West Elementary School and Principal of Anacostia Senior High school, assistant superintendent, Chief of Staff, and Chief Academic Officer. She also has held positions at the American University and the University of the District of Columbia as adjunct professor.  She remains active in professional organizations: Senior High Alliance of Parents, Principals, and Educators (founding member); 21st Century School Fund Board of Directors; the American University Chapter of Phi Delta Kappa; DC Retired Educators Association; and CHANCE Academy Board of Directors.  She received her B.S. degree in English from the DC Teachers College (UDC), her M.A. degree in English from Trinity College, and her Ed.D., Administration and Curriculum, from the George Washington University.  Dr. Musgrove is a member of the Alpha Kappa Sorority, Inc., Rho Mu Omega Chapter. She currently serves on the Board of Trustees at UDC.

Dr. Dawn Williams
Sunday, MARCH 17 @ 2pm

Dr. Dawn Williams serves as the Dean of the Howard University School of Education. She joined the faculty at Howard University in 2003 as an assistant professor of educational leadership and policy. She was promoted to associate professor in 2008 and granted tenure. Dr. Williams served as chair of the department of educational leadership and policy studies from 2010 to 2016. Dr. Williams is author and co-author of approximately 30 articles and book chapters that focus on leadership, governance, and macro-educational policies targeted for urban school reform. From her leadership and research record, she has appeared on BET, CNN, and ABC networks.  Over the past decade, she has been a recipient of several grants totaling approximately $3.3 million funded by the National Science Foundation. Her research in the STEM and educational policy arena is focused on issues of access and diversity while promoting a conscious social justice agenda. Dr. Williams is a graduate of North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, where she majored in elementary education. She holds master’s and doctoral degrees in educational policy studies from the University of Illinois.

Gina Daniels, Brittney Dubose, Ro Boddie, Joel Ashur, and Jasmine Joy in Tempestuous Elements. Photo by Kian McKellar.