Sooner Theatre of Norman, Inc.
101 E Main St.
Norman OK 73069-1302
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Mission Statement The Sooner Theatre of Norman, Inc. provides cultural, entertainment and educational opportunities for the community by operating a financially sound performing arts facility and by preserving its historical integrity and character.
Cats January 2014
Contact Information
Contact Name Nancy Coggins
Contact email
Address 101 E Main St.
Norman, OK 73069 1302
Phone (405) 321-9600
Fax 405-364-0543
County Cleveland County
How to Give
Donate with Credit Card
Other ways to donate, support or volunteer Like most community theatres, ticket sales make up only a portion of our annual budget. The rest comes from public and private grants, corporate sponsorships, and perhaps most critical – individual donors. Donate online today, send a check to The Sooner Theatre, 101 E. Main St., Norman, OK 73069, or stop by the box office, Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m.-noon or 2-5 p.m., or before any show!
Financial Summary
Projected Revenue $743,320.00
Projected Expenses $743,320.00
History and Background
Year Founded 1929
IRS Ruling Year 1976
State Registration Expiration Mar 2017
Mission The Sooner Theatre of Norman, Inc. provides cultural, entertainment and educational opportunities for the community by operating a financially sound performing arts facility and by preserving its historical integrity and character.
Background The Sooner Theatre opened her doors for the first time in 1929 as the first movie theatre in the region built to show "talking pictures." Local architect Harold Gimeno spared no expense while building the Spanish Gothic Style building, spending over $200,000. Mosaic tile and Italian marble were imported for the project, and a special ladies' lounge was installed on the mezzanine level. A soundproof cry-room at the back of the orchestra level accommodated babies. The ceiling is adorned with 252 Spanish coat-of-arms, which were hand painted by the Patricio Gimeno, the architect's father. The theatre even boasted refrigerated air and cooled water fountains. The audience gasped in surprise when the first "talkie," Alias Jimmy Valentine played; the actors were speaking! After working frantically throughout that first show to cue the oversized records with the miles and miles of cellophane tape, the projectionist quit in disgust. Moving pictures were "too darn complicated" and, he predicted, they would not last. Luckily, motion pictures have lasted, and so did the Sooner Theatre, at least until the 1970s. It was during this time that movie theatres became multiplexes and the single screened Sooner just couldn't keep up with the demand. In 1975, the Sooner Theatre closed with Attack of the Amazons. It seemed that the only future visitor the Sooner Theatre could look forward to was the wrecking ball. A dedicated group of citizens refused to lose the theater, and appealed to the City of Norman under the aegis of The Sooner Theatre, Inc. The City agreed to purchase the theatre and lease her to them for a dollar per year. After the first phase of restoration, Norman's own "Grand Dame" opened her doors again in 1982 as a community performing arts center. The theatre is now listed on both the State and National Registry of Historic Places, and hosts a variety of shows, ranging from ballet and opera to concerts, plays and musicals. Visit the Sooner Theatre today to find out why she's so special!
Three of our successes from last fiscal year include:
1. Conceived of and initiated Capital Campaign for the Studio of The Sooner Theatre - the largest we have ever embarked on.

2. Purchased, renovated and moved our Studio into it's new permanent home!!

3. The Sooner Theatre (and the Studio) was named the first ever arts organization as beneficiary of the Norman group of Rotary Clubs' Le Tour de Vin fundraising event. It was our first time to apply and we were told it would be very unlikely for an arts organization to be chosen.

Needs The Sooner Theatre's most pressing needs are, like most arts organizations, time, talent and financial support, We are always seeking volunteers in areas as broad as ushering shows, working in our sweet shop, building sets, creating and procuring props for shows, etc. The vast majority of the talent on our stage is volunteer, so we are also always looking for community members with a desire to sing, dance and act! Each year, approximately $120,000 of our budget is raised through corporate and individual investment in the arts, and we would love to speak to you about the importance of community investment in the arts and the value the arts provides our community each year. Our performing arts education programs see more than 950 enrollments annually, with more than $40,000 given in scholarship funds to students who would otherwise be unable to afford to participate. We would love to tell you how participation in the performing arts changes their lives in all areas. Let us know if you'd like to help!
Area Served
Area Served
Geographic Area Served
Central Oklahoma
Norman, Oklahoma, as well as South Oklahoma City metro area communities including South OKC, Moore, Noble, Blanchard, Tuttle, Newcastle, Deer Creek, Washington, Purcell, Little Axe, Midwest City, Del City and more.
Service Categories
Secondary Organizational Category Arts,Culture & Humanities/Performing Arts
Tertiary Organizational Category Arts,Culture & Humanities/Theater
Description The Sooner Theatre's Main Event Concert Series consists of three to four live performances by nationally touring artists who either do not travel to this part of the country often, have extremely strong fan bases in this area, and/or offer a performance that will provide a new, enriching experience for our patrons.
Population Served Adults
Description Sooner Stage Presents is a full-scale theatrical season of community theatre productions produced by The Sooner Theatre each year. Typically, three productions including musicals and occasionally plays, are produced and the season runs from September through May of each fiscal year.
Population Served General/Unspecified

Thirteen years ago, The Sooner Theatre launched a dream to reach out to our community and create an opportunity for students of all ages to explore their own dreams in the performing arts. With a great leap of faith, we rented and renovated space to open a limited number of school year and summer classes for students to pursue those dreams.

It was a scary proposition that we would be able to find enough students to fill the classes and make the rental and renovation of the space make financial sense. We knew there were some kids in our community who were interested in the performing arts, but we didn’t anticipate the Dream they shared and explosion of growth we have experienced in our Studio. From one summer camp with 31 participants, we have grown studio offerings to 55 camps and year-round classes, serving more than 960 enrolled in FY 2015. We filled two production classes on the first day of enrollment this fall, and each summer, more than 225 students audition for 110-120 available spots in our two summer production camps.

Population Served Children and Youth (0 - 19 years) Poor,Economically Disadvantaged,Indigent People/Families with of People with Disabilities
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Jennifer Baker
Start Date Jan 2003

She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Oklahoma. Before taking the position at The Sooner Theatre in 2003, she lived in NYC and traveled as a professional actress and choreographer working in numerous productions across the country. She thought she was through with the "performing" chapter of her life, until she found herself on stage again at The Sooner Theatre a few times including her 10-year Anniversary celebration as Dolly Levi in Hello Dolly! Performing credits include: an NBC Movie of the Week, several feature and indie films, a performer in Reader’s Digest’s DVD, America, Portrait of Song, a soloist for The National Governor’s Convention, a brief stay as the lead female in a popular Branson show, and a guest performer in President Clinton’s Inaugural Parade. Favorite experiences include: Music Theatre of Wichita, Lyric Theatre of OKC, Mill Mt Theatre, Buck’s County Playhouse, Pocono Playhouse, 7 years as Laurey, in Discoveryland’s Oklahoma! and dozens of commercials and videos. She's choreographed several commercials for the Oklahoma Lottery, Riverwind, and Taco Mayo. Choreography jobs include Six Flags Parks, Premier Parks, Discoveryland, Bear Creek Farms, the Oklahoma Dome Dedication and has directed and choreographed over 100 musicals and live events across the country. She directs the United Way’s Celebrity Sing and serves, and has served, on several Norman boards and committees to include, Transition House, Norman Public School’s Gifted Council, Citizen’s Advisory Board, The Norman Chamber of Commerce, The Mayor’s Centennial Committee, and The Main Street Christmas Parade. She is a member of Norman Rotary and a graduate of Leadership Norman. She is a current member of Oklahoma's Leadership Arts. She was awarded "Do You Know Your Neighbor Award", The Fowler Arts Award, and the Chamber's Volunteer of the Month.

Senior Staff
Brandon AdamsAssociate Artistic Director
Number of Full-time Staff 5
Number of Part-time Staff 2
Number of Contract Staff 16
Number of Volunteers 100
Staff Retention Rate 100
Are professional development opportunities provided? Yes
Does CEO/Executive Director have formal evaluations? Yes
Management reports to board? Yes
Staff Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 7
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Staff Demographics - Gender
Male 2
Female 5
Organizational Plans
Fundraising Plan Under Development
Policy against commission-based compensation for fundraising consultant Yes
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan Yes
Number of Years Strategic Plan Considers 3
Date Strategic Plan Adopted Sept 2012
Management Succession Plan Under Development
Organization Policies and Procedures Yes
The Sooner Theatre routinely collaborates with other organizations in our community as well as other arts organizations in the metro area. We work very closely with the University of Oklahoma's departments of musical theatre, dance and drama, the United Way of Norman, The Norman Chamber of Commerce, the OKC Philharmonic, Celebrity Attractions, Norman Public Schools and many more.
Allied Arts member agency2013
Chamber of Commerce2003
Government Licenses
Is your organization licensed by the government (federal, state and/or local)? No
Board Chair
Name Ms. Amy Pepper
Company Affiliation OU College of Law/OU Legal Clinic
Term July 2016 to June 2017
Board of Directors
List Current as of July 01, 2016
Board of Directors List
Mr. Troy Appling The Banker's BankVoting
Mr. Woody Glass Ward & Glass LawVoting
Mr. Brandon Hopper Valliance BankVoting
Mr. Greg Jungman US Dept. of Housing and Urban DevelopmentVoting
Mr. Tyler LaReau LaReau & Associates/Norman Stamp & SealVoting
Mr. Tim Lashar Lashar Comfort SolutionsVoting
Mr. Mark Ledbetter Republic Bank & TrustVoting
Ms. Laurie McReynolds The Carl Albert Center at The University of OklahomaVoting
Ms. Amy Pepper
Mrs. Beth Pepper Eide Bailly, LLPVoting
Mrs. Susan Vassilakos H&H Gun RangeVoting
Mrs. Jennifer Vice Havenbrook Funeral HomeVoting
Ms. Vicki Worster Total Compliance Human ResourcesVoting
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 13
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 7
Female 6
Board Term Lengths 3 years
Percentage of Board Making Monetary Contributions to the Organization 100 %
Percentage of Board Making In-Kind Contributions to the Organization 59 %
Board Orientation Yes
Constituency Includes Client Representation No
Written Board Selection Criteria? Under Development
Standing Committees
Board Development / Board Orientation
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Human Resources / Personnel
Program / Program Planning
Current Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year July 01, 2016-June 30, 2017
Current Year Budgeted Total Income $743,320
Current Year Budgeted Total Expenses $743,320
Financial Documents
IRS Letter of Determination
Prior Three Years' Financial History
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201520142013
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
Government Contributions$0$0$0
Individual Contributions$24,691$71,999$49,140
Investment Income, Net of Losses------
Unrealized Gain/Loss------
Membership Dues------
Special Events$34,783$62,675$49,636
Revenue In-Kind------
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201520142013
Program Expense$398,904$395,614$380,641
Administration Expense$365,245$340,195$319,649
Fundraising Expense$28,044$29,388$26,471
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.401.010.97
Program Expense/Total Expenses50%52%52%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue17%12%14%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201520142013
Total Assets$1,768,944$210,372$203,405
Current Assets$243,851$59,503$65,021
Long-Term Liabilities$1,309,000$110,000$114,000
Current Liabilities$120,543$74,439$70,268
Total Net Assets$339,401$25,933$19,137
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities2.020.800.93
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201520142013
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets74%52%56%
Funding Sources
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201520142013
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountOther $491,464Earned Revenue $534,932Earned Revenue $490,123
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountEarned Revenue $452,850Foundations & Corporations $100,467Foundations & Corporations $90,405
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountFoundations & Corporations $101,873Individuals $71,999Special Events $49,636
Endowment? Yes
Endowment Spending Policy N/A
Endowment Spending Policy Percentage (if selected) 0 %
Credit Line? Yes
Reserve Fund? No
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? Yes
Campaign Purpose To purchase and renovate a permanent space for The Studio of The Sooner Theatre, with event/performance space, costume/prop shop/storage and tech/scene shop
Campaign Goal $1,900,000
Campaign Dates June 2014 to Aug 2017
Amount Raised To Date $650,000 as of Oct 2016
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next Five Years? No
Comments on Financials
Foundation Staff Comments
All prior year financial information is from audited financials.  The organization had its first audit in 2013.
Note:  FY2015, "Other Revenue" includes $419,622 of Capital campaign pledges.  As of per Note 3 - Pledges Receivable, gross pledges still have an outstanding balance of $177,816 to be received over a period of 1 to 3 years.  Pledges receivable extending past one year are recognized at fair value, using present value techniques and a discount rate of 3%.
Organizations with a GiveSmartOKC profile are responsible for updating information annually within 45 days following the end of their fiscal year.
Address 101 E Main St.
Norman, OK 73069 1302
Primary Phone 405 321-9600
Contact Email
CEO/Executive Director Jennifer Baker
Board Chair Ms. Amy Pepper
Board Chair Company Affiliation OU College of Law/OU Legal Clinic


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