Drawing upon more than five decades of practiced experience in education and the theatre arts, Dr. James J. Kolb has been a professor of drama within the Department of Drama and Dance at Hofstra University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences since 1988. Initially joining the renowned university in 1965, he was formerly the director of liberal arts studies from 1985 to 1988 and adjunct professor of drama from 1987 to 1988.
Dr. Kolb has prior experience with such academic institutions as the Hochstein School of Music and Dance, now known as the Hochstein School, where he served as an independent researcher in piano and theory between 1984 and 1985, as well as Nazareth College in Rochester, New York, serving the aforementioned facility as an instructor, assistant professor, associate professor and full professor of the theatre arts between 1969 and 1984. Likewise, Dr. Kolb has been a speaker in the humanities, a consultant for Arts Connection in New York and a theater auditor for the New York State Council on the Arts.
Since 1985, Dr. Kolb has been a lecturer in various public libraries and has contributed his extent of expertise to numerous creative works. He has been the director of such theater works as “Merry Wives of Windsor,” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “Pride and Prejudice,” “Macbeth,” “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” and “On the Town,” among others. He was also the co-editor of “Art, Glitter and Glitz: Mainstream Playwrights and Popular Theatre in 1920s America” in 2004 and “Experimenters, Rebels and Disparate Voices: The Theatre of the 1920s Celebrates American Diversity” in 2003. Furthermore, Dr. Kolb has worked as a contributor to myriad professional publications, speaker and presenter of papers.
Among his notable achievements, Dr. Kolb is proudest of doubling the size of the liberal art studies and continuing education program at Nazareth College during his tenure. While at Nazareth, he also enjoyed chairing the faculty council and curriculum committee, as well as directed the creation and approval of a significant faculty handbook. Additionally, upon his start at Hofstra University, the number of drama students increased from 56 to 220 during his time as chairman of the Department of Drama and Dance.
As a testament to his profound success within education and the theatre arts, Dr. Kolb has been decorated with numerous accolades. Named the Distinguished Colleague of the Year by Nazareth College in 1984, he previously was named a Teacher of Excellence in Drama by the New York State English Council in 1983 and earned the Zelda Lyons Award from St. John Fisher College in 1966. Furthermore, he has received a plethora of various scholarships and fellowships within the arts and humanities from New York University and Harvard University.
Married to his wife, Barbara Bramlet, since 1969, Dr. Kolb was born in 1944 in Rochester to parents William George and Arline Kolb. In his spare time, Dr. Kolb enjoys playing the piano, listening to classical music, collecting stamps, exercising and attending the theater. He holds a Bachelor of Philosophy, summa cum laude, from St. John Fisher College, and a Master of Arts and PhD in theatre history and theory from New York University.
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