Brooke Benavides

Board Member
Brief info

Brooke is a graduate of Muhlenberg College with a B.A. in Theatre Arts/Dance and a minor in Music. She studied extensively at Goldsmith’s College & The Laban Center for Dance and Movement in London. Brooke performed professionally in regional theatre and Theatre for Young Audiences, becoming a member of Actor’s Equity Association. Her journey with Pushcart began in 1999 where she served the organization in varied roles: administrative assistant, actor, and Arts-In-Education instructor. Although passionate about performing, experiences along the way led Brooke to shift her focus to directing and choreographing musicals. To date, she has worked on over 50 musical productions for both adults & children for various schools and organizations in New Jersey, including choreographing productions of “Pocahontas” and “The Velveteen Rabbit” at The Forum Theatre. Some of her favorite work includes productions of “Evita,” “Children of Eden,” and “The Little Mermaid,” in which she staged a nationally-televised, featured spot on “The Daily Rundown” on MSNBC.

Aside from her time in the theatre, Brooke earned teaching certifications in Elementary (K-8), English (K-12), and Speech Arts/Dramatics (K-12). She spent twelve years bringing her love for literacy and learning into the classroom as a middle school Language Arts teacher. She earned Masters in both English Education and Educational Leadership and attended summer institutes in reading and writing at Teachers College: Columbia University. Additionally, she acquired administrative certifications in education: Supervisor and Principal.

Currently, Brooke is an administrator serving the Nutley Public Schools as the Coordinator of English Language Arts (K-12). In this role, she has the opportunity to manage all aspects of the English Language Arts Department: curriculum, assessment, instruction, evaluation, scheduling, budgeting, and reporting. Brooke has experience providing teachers with professional development workshops and coaching, including presenting at the Rye Summer Literacy Institute. She enjoys engaging her audience and sharing her passion for and knowledge of literacy and learning with other educators to help them bring clarity and confidence into their instruction.

Brooke resides with her husband, their two children, and their Sheepadoodle. She is absolutely thrilled to return to Pushcart to serve in a new capacity on the Board of Directors, bringing together her experiences in both theatre and education to support their work moving forward.