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Civic Theatre pledges a 'zero tolerance policy' on sexual harassment

The Rochester Civic Theatre is looking to turn the page following months of turmoil that included the loss of its longtime creative director and accusations that its former boss, Gregory Stavrou, sexually harassed female volunteers and cast members.

On Tuesday, the theater announced that Teresa Waldof has been named interim executive director. Waldof previously served as the director of business development at Taylor Corporation in Mankato.

In an email addressed to volunteers, donors and patrons, Waldof said one of her first objectives is to make sure the theater's policies and practices are up to par with other high-quality organizations.

"I am actively working to ensure that these requirements are met and continue to be met into the future," she wrote. "I am committed to providing a safe environment for all volunteers and staff."

Recent issues at the theater have prompted a revolt by hundreds of stakeholders — from volunteers to season ticket holders. Still, Waldof said RCT plans to move forward with auditions for the upcoming productions of "Urinetown" and "Mauritius."

In a separate statement released to the Post-Bulletin, the theater's leadership said the board and staff are committed to ensuring RCT is a "safe, welcoming place for patrons, volunteers and staff."

"Sexual harassment — or harassment of any kind — is abhorred and is not tolerated," the statement said. 

The theater said it will maintain a "zero tolerance policy on sexual harassment" and pledged to take immediate action on "any/all reports of sexual harassment." 

"The individual accused of sexual harassment is no longer employed at The Civic. Any further actions to be taken are in the hands of law enforcement. The Rochester Civic Theatre Company will fully cooperate with any law enforcement investigations."

Related: Behind the curtain: Internal drama puts Civic Theatre's future in jeopardy

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