Richard Ekman was only eight years out of graduate school, a tenured history professor and dean at Hiram College, when the curriculum vitae for Thomas L. Hellie came across his desk in 1980. Ekman, who admits to being “very young” as an administrator in those days, followed a hunch and made a decision he still calls one of his best. Hellie, who hadn’t yet finished his Ph.D. dissertation at University of Missouri, became Hiram’s new assistant professor of theatre.



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