SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. — After more than 30 years at the helm, Ed Herendeen has announced he’s stepping down from his role at the Contemporary American Theatre Festival.

In a letter to the Panhandle News Network yesterday, Herendeen said, “It has been an honor to lead the Contemporary American Theater Festival at Shepherd University. For thirty-one years, I have had the opportunity to collaborate with professional artists to create the future of American theater. I’m so proud of what we all have accomplished together.”

The past eighteen months have given him time to reflect and to come to the decision that now is the right time for me to retire as the Producing Director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival as of December 2021. He says he is looking forward to discovering and enjoying the next chapter of my life.

Herendeen says a six play repertory has been selected for the 2022 season and promises “The Festival will continue to flourish and thrive.”

The festival has faced difficulty the past two summers due to COVID-19 restrictions but normally draws thousands in to Shepherdstown to see first-run plays.