SALEM — Tom Hewitt, longtime drama teacher, retired from the Salem-Keizer School District in 2010 after 32 years. He then began looking for his next venture.
Hewitt created an after school drama program that now runs out of 11 middle schools, keeping kids active and out of trouble. He also has appeared as an extra in episodes of “Grimm” and “Leverage.”
Hewitt's next act: Catholic education.
He's been hired as Blanchet School's drama director.
Hewitt grew up in Salem and graduated from South Salem High School. He went on to attend and graduate from Western Oregon University with a bachelor of arts in education. He spent 10 years teaching at Pringle Elementary School followed by 22 years at Waldo and Judson Middle Schools. In addition to musical and technical theater, he has taught English, reading, writing, study skills, video production and speech. For 29 summers, he served as a teacher and play director for the Children’s Educational Theater program. Hewitt was honored as one of the first Crystal Apple Award winners in 1997.
In addition to teaching, Hewitt has been a part of the Pentacle Theater for more than 35 years. He has taken a variety of roles and now serves as the theater’s board treasurer.
At Blanchet, he takes over for long-time director Kasey Roberts. Roberts will continue teaching English at Blanchet but is taking a break from drama to spend more time with her family.
Charles Lee, president of Blanchet, says Hewitt will have a "great and positive impact on our fine arts program."