Meet Our State Thespian Officers
State Thespian Officers (STO) are the student voice of the governing organization. They spend much of their year planning our State Events and traveling to represent New Jersey Thespians on a National Level
STO Class of 2021
State Thespian Officer
Toms River HS East, Troupe 3459
@nickevgeniou is currently serving his second term as an STO, and is also the New Jersey representative for the International Thespian Society Leadership Council! Outside of NJ Thespians, he is a proud member of Troupe #3459, at Toms River High School East. He is Co-President of Troupe #3459, and can be found stage managing and designing things from the promotional materials to the set of all his schools productions. His personal favorite credit was this past this year on Eastside Theatre Company's production of Grease, where he had the opportunity to stage manage, but also artistically and conceptually reimagine the show itself in every aspect possible. Outside of theatre, he is the Vice President of his class, a Student Ambassador, and serves on the Student Body Student Council as well. Nick's passions lay heavily in his creativity-- ranging from photography to many other types of media, which is how he tends to spend his free time. Other than that, he likes to spend time outdoors and in the city with his friends! Lastly, Nick would like to leave you with a line from his favorite show, Hair: "Life is around you and in you."
Robbinsville HS, Troupe 7161
Kate Myers is a junior at Robbinsville High School, proudly representing Troupe 7161! Kate is an avid member of her school’s Drama Club, and is currently in her second year of captaining the department’s Improv performance team. Some of her favorite credits include She Kills Monsters, Beauty and the Beast, The Crucible, and Guys and Dolls. Besides the Theatre Department, Kate is a proud member of her school’s UNICEF Club, Tri-M Music Honors Society, and World Language Honors Society. She can be found baking and playing sudoku whenever she has the time. Not only that, but she is a devoted lover of apple juice and Stephen King. Kate is exceptionally grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the success of this year’s NJ Thespian Festival.
Hopewell Valley HS, Troupe 7964
Elliot Block is a student (2022) at Hopewell Valley Central High School, troupe 7964, and is stoked to be an STO! Elliot has performed in a multitude of shows over the years with Bucks County Playhouse, Music Mountain Theater, and Hopewell Valley Central High School. He is a member of several Acapella groups and a member of the honors choir at his high school that toured Europe in 2019. He loves long walks on the beach and getting caught in the rain as well as beatboxing, playing the ukulele, and bonfires. He is looking forward to making new friends and having a wonderful year serving New Jersey Thespians!
Morris Catholic HS, Troupe 23
Tyler Esterly is a senior at Morris Catholic High School and is so grateful for this opportunity. As a representative for Troupe 23, he advocates for the arts in and around his community. His favorite productions include 42nd Street (Doctor, Tap Ensemble), Inherit The Wind (Mr. Harrison Brady), and two canceled shows due to COVID-19: Big Fish (Ensemble) at County College of Morris, and Newsies (Romeo). Tyler also participated in Manhattan Productions Broadway Series: The Scarlet Pimpernel that was performed at The Lincoln Center. Other than Theatre, he spends most of his time involved in Boy Scouts, working at a senior residence home, and being a Student Ambassador for his school. He received The National Merit of Honor from the Boy Scouts of America for saving a life in 2018. His hobbies include bike riding, bullet journaling, editing videos, and video games! Tyler is looking forward to making this year the best thespian festival ever for all troupes with his fellow STOs!
North Star Academy, Troupe 7713
SHANTEL HILL is so honored and excited to be an STO for this term! She is involved in her school's choir, fall plays( Anonymous, Twilight:Los Angeles 1992, Pipeline), and spring musicals( Fiddler on the Roof, West Side Story, Bring It On), as well as activities outside of school such as dance and "The Tap Dance Kid" at NJPAC directed by Savion Glover. Her role as STO is not only to volunteer her time to a community and an industry that she loves but to fight for additions and/or amendments to make it even better. She also wants to serve as a helping hand to all of her peers and mentors, both physically and emotionally. She is so excited to provide everything that she can this year!
Northern Burlington, Troupe 4762
Joshua Dekovitch is so ecstatic to be a part of the NJ Thespians as an STO for the 2020-2021 school year representing Northern Burlington Troupe 4762! During his time in high school, he’s been in musicals like The Drowsy Chaperone (Feldzieg ), Jesus Christ Superstar (Herod), And Sister Act (Curtis), as well as plays like I Hate Shakespeare (Bob), Little Women (George), and The Iliad The Odyssey And All Of Greek Mythology.... (Hermès/Diomedes/Pyramus). Some of his other hobbies include costuming for the school shows he’s in, drawing plenty of other costume designs, doing weird makeup, and being too enveloped in the art form of drag. He’d like to thank the board for accepting him as a new member of the STO family and he can’t wait to see where this new opportunity brings him!
Piscataway HS, Troupe 8956
Justin Mendez is so excited to represent the NJ Thespians as an STO for the 2020-2021 school year. Over his high school career, he’s been in 9 to 5! (Franklin Hart), Broken Hearts! The Musical (Deborah), The Addams Family (Caveman), The Laramie Project (Jonás Slonaker), and Footloose (Garvin). Some of his other favorite rolls are spiral rolls and fish rolls. He’d like to thank his family for being his biggest supports, his friends for always being there, his friends, teachers, and family for encouraging him to be an STO, and his advisors for pushing him to be his best self. He can’t wait to be a part of the STO family!
Wildwood Catholic, Troupe 8938
Lena Dougherty, a senior at Wildwood Catholic Academy and a second year STO, is extremely excited to be a part of the 2019-2020 NJ STO Board! Some of her favorite stage credits include Sweet Charity (Nickie), Dear Edwina (Edwina), the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Olive), and 26 Pebbles (Carla). Lena has also enjoyed assistant directing and choreographing shows such as Mamma Mia, The Great Gatsby, and Junie B. Jones. Lena has recently been named the 2020 National Arts Action Summit Thespian Democracy Essay Winner. When she’s not on stage, Lena can be found serving on her school’s student council, volunteering within her community and advocating for inclusion in the arts. Lena can’t wait for an amazing festival and an even more incredible year! Instagram: @lena.dougherty
Northern Valley HS, Troupe 8557
Bobby Connolly is a senior at Northern Valley Regional H.S. Demarest and is honored to be a part of the 2020-2021 STO board! At school, he serves as Vice President of Troupe 8557, secretary of the debate team, is part of choral ensembles, the yearbook team, and is a member of his school’s leadership program and the National Honor Society. During the summer, Bobby is one of the drama counselors at his old summer camp, where he works with kids to put on a show every week. Some of his favorite roles include: Eddie (Mamma Mia!), Harry Bailey (It’s a Wonderful Life), and Jeter (Footloose). In his free time, Bobby loves to cook, bake, and play the piano. He is very excited to spread his love for theater as an STO this year and wishes everyone a great season filled with amazing performances and competitions!
Bayonne HS, Troupe 5093
Galilea Estrada is a senior at Bayonne High School and is so honored to represent Troupe 5093 on the 2020-2021 NJ STO Board! She has been in love with theatre and acting ever since her freshman year of high school and is excited to be able to learn and grow as a leader with others who share the same passion. She has been in productions including 1776, Mamma Mia and Lizzie Borden Took An Axe. When she is not seen on stage you can find her in the robotics classroom working on keeping things under control or with fellow members of the Model United Nations team. On her down time she loves to watch ASMR as well as reading one of her 200 books that she has. Galilea is truly excited to work alongside fellow NJ STO's to make this year unforgettable!
OCVTS PAA, Troupe 6185
Jackson Mizell is entering his senior year as an Acting Major at OCVTS Performing Arts Academy (PAA) in Toms River, NJ. He is honored to be selected as an STO for the 2020-2021 school year representing Troupe #6185. Jackson has been in productions at PAA as well as Brick Children's Community Theater, performing in musicals such as Seussical (Horton), Aladdin Jr. (Aladdin), Chicago (Amos Heart), and Legally Blonde (Warner). Thrilled to rank superior at the 2019-2020 NJ State Thespian Festival, Jackson is looking forward to experiencing the International Thespian Festival online! Jackson would like to thank his advisors, family and friends for their support and encouragement. In addition to theater, Jackson is passionate about arts advocacy , social justice and soccer (especially his favorite team, Chelsea F.C.). Jackson looks forward to working with his fellow STOs in making next year a memorable one!
Toms River HS North, Troupe 7455
Michael “Mikey” Tresvalles is thrilled to be a part of the 2020-21 STO Board, where he proudly represents Troupe #7455 from Toms River High School North. He is a part of many extracurriculars, such as his school’s Captain’s Crew, Chess Club, and Green Team, and outside of school is a cellist in the Philadelphia Young Artists Orchestra. However, he is most passionate about North’s Nautical Star Theatre Company, where he’s been in productions both live — The Addams Family (Living Prop), Pippin (Theo), Shrek the Musical (Ensemble, well, if this quarantine ever ends) — and virtual, such as North’s production of 10 Ways to Survive Life in a Quarantine (Director). He also served as the company’s Treasurer during the 2019-20 school year. During his free time, he can be seen practicing his piano and cello, or gaming (add him, “CokeahColah” on League of Legends and Valorant).
Morris County Tech, Troupe 7890
Hope is a senior at the Morris County School of Technology for the Academy of Multimedia and is so excited to represent Troupe 7890. Besides performing in and directing multiple productions, Hope enjoys filmmaking, photography, songwriting, volunteering for the “Miracle Project”, and working as a ski instructor. She is currently active in ITS, NTHS, and Peer Leaders. She loves being a part of Mayo Performing Art Center’s “Company” as well as working there as an Assistant Musical Theatre Instructor. Favorite shows include Grease (Marty), Tuck Everlasting (Mae), and The Little Mermaid (Scuttle). Hope is so excited to work with the other amazing STO’s this year.
“Forget Regret or Life is Yours to Miss” - Rent
Robbinsville HS, Troupe 7161
Ava, a senior at Robbinsville High School, proudly represents Troupe #7161 and is honored to be part of the 2020-2021 STO Board! Dedicating time and effort to all aspects of her department, she has been fortunate enough to be involved with both cast and crew while working on productions. Her favorite stage credits include The Crucible (Prop Master), She Kills Monsters (Co-Prop Master), and Guys and Dolls (Featured Dancer). Additionally, Ava is Secretary of her troupe, a member of the National Honors Society, Vice President of Tri-M Music Honor Society, and a Dance Captain/Choreographer in this year's school musical. Ava is beyond grateful for this opportunity to advocate theatre, make a difference in the community, and work with such a talented group of New Jersey thespians!
Hightstown HS, Troupe 3991
Courtney Sabogal is extremely honored to be a NJ STO this year and represent Thespian Troupe 3991. Courtney is a junior at Hightstown High School and is the vice president of the HHS Drama Club. Some of her past shows include Into the Woods, Arsenic and Old Lace, The Wiz, and Romeo and Juliet. Other than being onstage, Courtney is involved with the Red Cross Club and is on the girls golf team. Some of her interests are painting, spending time with her dog Cody, and listening to music. Courtney is so excited to work alongside such amazing and talented people and is looking forward to a fantastic year.
Egg Harbor Twp. HS, Troupe 3993
Alex Manzo is currently a junior at Egg Harbor Township High School and proudly representing Troupe 3993! Alex is so excited to be a part of the 2020-2021 STO Board, and to make some amazing things happen! You can probably find Alex listening to Harry Styles, watching any movie with Timothée Chalamet in it, or at rehearsal! Some of Alex’s favorite stage credits include Shrek (Shrek), Into The Woods (Jack), 12 Angry Jurors (Juror #4), West Side Story (Tony), and Mamma Mia! (Sky). Alex can’t wait for an amazing year with some amazing people!
Rancocas Valley HS, Troupe 1555
Brendan is incredibly excited to join the NJ STO board for the 2020-2021 school year! A senior representing Troupe 1555 at Rancocas Valley Regional High School, and a member of the Burlington County Footlighters' Intern Co, Brendan has been involved with theater for most of his life. His favorite recent productions have included The Addams Family (Gomez Addams), Chicago (Billy Flynn), and Mary Zimmerman's Argonautika (Meleager). When he isn't onstage, Brendan can be found as a part of the National Honor Society, and helping to bring theater into local communities by volunteering at both the McCarter Theatre Center and the Kelsey Theatre. Brendan cannot wait to work with his fellow STOs for the next year!
Northern Burlington, Troupe 4762
Jocelyn Jeffries is a Senior at Northern Burlington High School, troupe 4762. She has been in theatre for over 10 years. She has been a filmmaker and props manager 3 years and counting. Over that time, Jocelyn has been blessed with many wonderful opportunities. Jocelyn is in her school’s chapter of the National Honors Society (NHS). She is a team leader in Odyssey of the Mind (OOTM) and a Captain for Northern Burlington’s New Jersey Drama and Forensics League (NJDFL) team. She is the intern for Arts Ed NJ. Jocelyn, of course, is a thespian and she attributes Thespian Society as a main reason she is where she is today. Through the Thespian Society, she has become the secretary of her chapter as well as a State Thespian Officer (STO). Jocelyn looks forward to another year serving the NJ thespians as an STO.
Bordentown Reg. HS, Troupe 6803
STO Vice Chair
Gia is a junior at Bordentown Regional High School proud to be representing Troupe #6803. An active member in her theatre community, Gia partakes in both acting and stage crew, and is excited to serve as a 2020-2021 STO. Some of her favorite shows she has participated in are 9-5 and Cinderella. When not running around helping out with props or tech, Gia loves to roller skate and jam out to music, especially if she can sing as loud as she wants. Excited to be a State Officer, Gia can't wait to see what this year has in store!
Morris Hills HS, Troupe 1736
Alana Isaac is so excited to represent the NJ Thespians as an STO this year! This coming school year will be her first as an STO and her second as Secretary for ITS Troupe 1736 at Morris Hills High School. She was stage manager for The Little Mermaid and 12 Angry Jurors, and she did lights for both. She's done lights for 16 other productions and school events, was head of lights for 11 of them, and performed in two. Alana has competed in the ITS Festival and STANJ competition for the past two years, and this year, she and the rest of the cast of 12 Angry Jurors won third place in the state for their group scene where Alana played Juror 2. When not doing theater, Alana plays field hockey and loves Dungeons & Dragons. She'd like to thank the casts and crews of 12 Angry Jurors and The Little Mermaid for being the reasons she loves working in the theater, the 2019-2020 Officers of ITS Troupe 1736 for showing her what it means to be a strong leader, and Mr. Fahrer and Mrs. Lavin for their endless love and support, and for always pushing her to be better. She can't wait to work with all of the STOs this school year!
GCIT, Troupe 5480
Alison Maselek is a rising junior super excited to be an STO! Previously thespian credits include being president of her Jr. Thespian troupe from 2016-2018 and is currently serving as the Junior Fundraiser of her current troupe, GCIT’s 5480. She is very passionate about arts advocacy and can’t wait to make this year the best Thespian has ever seen!