Gresdna Doty – … a person of character

Considering, she has a passion for the arts, and a belief that theater offers an opportunity for learning to those in the audience as well as to hose behind the scenes. “It’s a way of seeing the world around us, and it makes for a healthier community.”

Considering, in an age where many women did not work outside of the home, she was a trailblazer. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Northern Iowa in 1953, her master’s in theater for the University of Florida in 1957, and her doctorate degree in theater from Indiana University in 1967. She was a professor at LSU for almost three decades.

Considering, she is a pioneer in her profession. She was the first chair of the Department of Theatre at LSU. She is also one of the first women on LSU’s campus to be named Alumni Professor Emerita.

Considering, she was instrumental in bringing Barry Kyle to LSU and was a founding board member of Swine Palace in 1992. She still attends as many productions as she can at Swine Palace and LSU Theater.

Considering, she is known for her genuine kindness, her astute sensibility and her wisdom. She is thoughtful, deliberate and considerate. When she talks, others listen.

Considering, she regards each organization that she supports in terms of its community impact, and she works on making each successful and accessible to all.

Considering, she helped conceive of and implement the Margaret Stones project at LSU from 1975 to 1978. The result is more than 200 drawings of native Louisiana flora over a 10-year period, with a published record in Flora of Louisiana by LSU Press.

Considering, she is well-traveled and has friends around the world. She recognizes great ideas used elsewhere and considers how they would work for our community.

Considering, she was instrumental in the conception of Treasures of LSU, published by LSU Press in 2010 in celebration of the university’s sesquicentennial. She also served on its editorial board. The book highlights the numerous and diverse riches found throughout the Baton Rouge campus and beyond.

Considering, she has extremely high standards and she gives all of herself to every project she pursues.

Considering, she immerses herself in the Baton Rouge community. She supports the Louisiana Art & Science Museum and has been part of its advisory board since 2007. She has served as the president of the Arts Council of Baton Rouge and been a board member for the Baton Rouge Ballet Company.

Considering, she wants to never stop learning. “When another opportunity to learn and grow comes along, I’ll follow it.”