Jim Niesen has served as Artistic Director of the Irondale Ensemble Project’s since its founding in 1983, directing more than eighty plays among them nine by Brecht including the three play cycle Brecht in Exile and sixteen by Shakespeare most prominently the epic marathon 1599 - Henry V, Julius Caesar, As You Like It, and Hamlet – all performed in a single evening. Mr. Niesen created the Irondale production of YOU CAN’T WIN, which took the Grand Prix at the International Drama Festival in St. Petersburg, Russia. With Barbara Mackenzie-Wood he devised the theatre program for Global Camps a non-profit organization working with children affected by HIV/AIDS in developing African countries. In 2018 he was named a distinguished alumnus of Ohio University where he serves on the College of Fine Arts Leadership Council. In 2019 he was selected to be part of the US delegations to Santiago a Mil, the largest arts festival in Chile and the Joint Chinese US Theatre Conference in Shanghai. Mr. Niesen is listed in WHO'S WHO IN AMERICA and the BROOKLYN MAGAZINE named him one of the “100 Most Influential People in Brooklyn Culture.” His articles on theater have been published in GESTUS and THEATER THREE. He is a contributor to the book AMERICAN DRAMATURGY and writes a weekly column on theatre: What’s on Jim’s Mind.