A leader during her undergraduate years, Fran M. Drew is remembered at the College of Saint Elizabeth not only for her activities as co-editor of The Pelican, student council representative, class vice president and her three-month volunteer service in Kansas as a Collegiate Papal volunteer.
Perhaps, however, she is remembered most of all by her success in bringing Peter, Paul and Mary to the College of Saint Elizabeth for a live concert during the height of that folk group's popularity.
Following her graduation in 1963, Fran earned an M.A. in Education and the Humanities from Kean College and began a very successful 32-years career in the chemical industry. She retired as Vice President of Production at Sutton Labs in Chatham, NJ.
In 1994, Fran and her husband, Jack, joined her brother and his wife in the purchase of the abandoned Algonquin Arts Movie House which they renovated without any public funds for use as an arts theatre in Manasquan, New Jersey. Today, the Algonquin Arts Theatre is a modern cultural showpiece accessible to the physically challenged and equipped with an orchestra pit, dramatic stage, lighting and sound systems and many other state-of-the-art improvements designed to support an extensive array of performing and educational programs. The renovation of the Algonquin Arts Theatre inspired revitalization of the entire downtown area of Manasquan and earned the Monmouth County Planning Board's Planning Merit Award.
As the Executive Director of Algonquin Arts, a nonprofit corporation that raises funds to bring programs into the Theatre, Fran brings her many years of business experience to the organization. She is an active member of the Association of Performing Arts Presenters, Pennsylvania Presenters, and ConSert. Over the past seven years she has helped launch impressive programming.
Fran's very active life of civic service and dedication to provide cultural opportunities for a wide audience at a reasonable cost and in a convenient location deserves the highest recognition. In so doing, her life epitomizes that of a truly educated Christian woman whom the College of Saint Elizabeth takes pride in honoring.