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Bob and Molly Simpson Honored with Theatre Naming


JONESBORO – Bob and Molly Simpson, who have given most of their professional career in service to theatre arts education at Arkansas State University, were honored Friday evening with the dedication of "The Simpson Theatre," newly named in their honor.

By action of the Board of Trustees at its meeting on Sept. 23, the black box experimental teaching theatre in Fowler Center was renamed in recognition of the Simpsons' distinguished service and support of the university.

Family and close friends gathered for remarks and the unveiling prior to the opening night performance of A-State Theatre's first production of the 2016-17 season.

The resolution recognizing the couple's professional career noted Bob was a faculty member for 36 years, and his wife Molly served on faculty for 28 years. They elected to retire from the university this year.

"Bob and Molly Simpson are respected leaders in the community, advocates of higher education, and have touched the lives of countless students and colleagues," the Board of Trustees resolution stated.

Bob was technical director and director of theatre before becoming department chair. For the past two years, he also served as director of Fowler Center.

Molly, who was involved with 92 productions, was instrumental in starting the Summer Children's Theatre program, which enjoyed its 23rd season this year.

Both were instrumental in the A-State Theatre's transition to new quarters in Fowler Center, which opened in 2001, and with formation and direction of the A-State Theatre Guild, a support organization.