‘Drama Mama’ wins national service award
For 20 years Pat Josten has helped thousands of young people into the spotlight as a backstage volunteer in the theater world. Now that spotlight is being turned on her.
On Monday, Josten learned she’s a national recipient of the Jefferson Award for community service.
Other winners of the award include three Supreme Court justices, six secretaries of state and three former first ladies. Josten will be honored at a U.S Senate reception in Washington, D.C., in late June.
“I’m going to have to go find some fancy clothes to meet all these important people,” Josten said. “My jeans and show T-shirts aren’t going to cut it.”
Josten volunteers as the artistic director for BAC Stage Kids at the Brewery Arts Center in Carson City. She also produces plays for the Carson High School drama department and helps other theater groups.
Called the “Drama Mama” by her young actors, Josten is so involved in the theater that she uses her plays to tell time. Asked when she was awarded the regional Jefferson award, she named the play she was working on at the time – not the month she won the award.
“We base our lives around which shows we’re working on,” she said.
She was doing tech week for “Annie Jr.” in February when she first learned she won the local award. It was during the production of “Guys and Dolls” in March she learned she won the regional award. She is currently rehearsing for “Rumplestiltskin” with the high school, “Trust” for the Proscenium Players and “Fizz” with the BAC Stage Kids.
Wednesday she took a break from the shows to display the medal she won at the Brewery Arts Center. Skittering around her feet was Katy Rose, the theater dog.
“We found her in the parking lot right here at the Brewery Arts Center,” Josten said. “She lives with me now and belongs to all the kids.”
Josten never expected any recognition for her work in the theater.
“I do it because I love it, not because I expect recognition,” she said. “It’s just so much fun to watch (the young actors) blossom and grow.
Contact Karl Horeis at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1219.