2013 Key To The City Award

John Cramer and the Waukesha Civic Theatre received the 2013 Waukesha “Key to the City Award,” which is considered the highest form of municipal honor! It was presented for outstanding contributions to the Waukesha community.

“The practice of presenting a Key to the City to an individual may be traced back to medieval times, when admission into a city was hampered by walls and locked gates. Back then the key symbolized free entry. Today the presentation honors people and organizations for their outstanding civic contributions, and symbolizes that the city is at their service.

“As a citizen Mayor, and custodian for the city residents, I am humbled to give these keys to the following 12 2013 recipients, whom have my utmost respect and whom deserve this recognition. Their contributions have further stabilized the family values of Waukesha — values of empathy, responsibility and creativity. They have carried out these values with strength to proactively build a brighter future — a brighter future for ourselves and for our children,” Scrima said. Mayor Scrima has been giving the award for the past three years.

Mayor Scrima chose John and WCT to receive the award because the work done at the Waukesha Civic Theatre “reminds us all that as different as we might think we are, we all share a universal human experience. Mr. Cramer is personal, funny and touching. They enrich, challenge and make our community smile.”

John has been the Managing Artistic Director at WCT since June 2003. When he started at the theatre, we were open 22 weeks of the year, producing six Mainstage shows, one holiday show, and two PlayMakers shows (approximately 80 performances).  We had a small, inconsistent theatre arts education program offering one or two classes a year.

Today we are open 46 weeks of the year, producing eight Mainstage shows, two ACAP PlayMakers shows, three Education and Outreach shows, and presenting seven to fifteen Random Acts of Entertainment (approximately 130 performances).  Our theatre arts education program is now a full year program, with more than forty classes offered every year, and a robust outreach program offering classes and workshops in the community for schools, community centers, arts centers, and more.

We are not the only ones working to make Waukesha such an outstanding place to live, work, and play, however. Over the past three years, many of Waukesha’s most prominent citizens, businesses, and organizations have been honored with the Key to the City Award.

Other Recipients Include:


Jesús (Jesse) Mireles

Karen Tredwell and the Waukesha Food Pantry

Chris Becker and the Waukesha YMCA

Gregg Wandsneider

Jerry and Judie Couri

Kerry and Terry Mackay

Dr. Amy Schley

John Cramer and the Waukesha Civic Theatre

CEO Peter Davis and Gaco Western

Principal Lisa Kovaleski and Waukesha Catholic School System

Rev. Paul B. R. Hartmann and Catholic Memorial High School

Larry Blanton and MetalTek International

Chief Russell Jack and the Waukesha Police Department


Steve Crandell – Director Community Development

Ron Grall – Director  Waukesha Parks, Recreation and Forestry Dept

Rick Congdon  – Executive Director, Habitat for Humanity

John M. Schoenknecht – Historian

Roger Igielski – Allo! Chocolat owner and WDBA president

Nancy Major – Executive Director   Safe Babies, Healthy Families

Renee Ramirez  – Executive Director   Waukesha Community Dental Clinic

Thom Farrell – President – SPX Transformer Solutions

Page Remmers – Executive Director  Waukesha Community Art Project

Todd Gray – Superintendent  Waukesha School District

Brian White – President GE Waukesha Gas Engines

Majors Ronald and Carol Lemirand  of the Waukesha Salvation Army


Fire Chief Allen LaConte

Library Director Jane Ameel

Andrea and Tony Bryant

Susan Edwards and ProHealth Care

President Doug Hastad and Carroll University

Ty Taylor and Waukesha State Bank

Jeff Seymour

Lynn Gaffey

Norm Bruce

Bernie Juno

Anselm Villarreal and La Casa de Esperanza

The Taylor and People’s Park Family

Look for the award and John in our lobby the next time you’re at a show. Without your support and patronage, we couldn’t do what we do. See you at the Theatre!


Posted on December 24, 2013, in Staff, Waukesha Civic Theatre and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on 2013 Key To The City Award.

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