Lilli Ann Linford-Foreman is a drama and speech teacher at Central Oregon Community College. She lived in central Pennsylvania until she got a job offer at COCC. She was eager to get back to the west coast where she could pursue her interest in teaching students.
“I was glad to get a job where teaching is the first priority,” said Linford-Foreman.
Linford-Foreman has been a professor of the theatre arts program since fall of 1987. She became director of the theater arts program—where she has performed in three productions—
until the theater arts program was cut in 2003 due to the post 9/11 economic downturn. The cuts included not only the theater arts productions, but the Jazz band, choir and orchestra
programs as well.
She then took a sabbatical, went to graduate school, and earned her speech degree. She also taught speech at Oregon State University.
Linford-Foreman came back to COCC in the fall 2004 and she is presently a theater arts and speech professor. After Linford-Foreman came back to COCC, she not only could teach theater arts, she could also be a speechprofessor.
“My job got reinvented,” said Linford-Foreman.
In addition to teaching, Linford-Foreman volunteers at the Bend Theatre for Young People and at Cascades Theatrical Company, sings with the Central Oregon Mastersingers and has
directed sixty plays. Before she was a director, she worked as an actress in the San Fransisco Bay area where she starred in independent films and stage plays. However, she did not like the glamorous life of an actress.
“The life of an actor/actress is uncertain. I did not like moving from job to job” she said.
Linford-Foreman’s favorite productions that she’s directed or performed in include: “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Lend me a Tenor,” and “Much Ado about Nothing.”
“Sometimes a show ends up happening exactly as I visualized it. Actors, lights, costumes; everything comes together perfectly. Those are the exceptions, rather than the rule. More often, the show is solid and audiences enjoy it, but I can see things that, given the choice and time to do so, I would change” said Linford-Foreman in an e-mail.
Linford-Foreman is not stopping anytime soon. Her next project is directing “Oliver” which will be showcased at Cascades Theatrical Company and will feature several COCC students.