Who We Are
Officers & BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Professor Berry joined the Navy at seventeen and served as a Hospital Corpsman in the United States Navy. While in the service he began his college studies at Chabot College in San Leandro, California. He would receive his Bachelor of Science Degree from Dana College, Blair, Nebraska. After three years of high school teaching, he attended Central Missouri University and received his Master of Arts in History. Later he would receive a Master’s Degree in Mass Communications and Film and a Master’s Degree in Theater and Directing. Both graduate degrees were granted through LindenwoodUniversity.
As a youth, he danced with a clogging group that toured, played in the high school band, and was in the Naval Training Center Drum and Bugle Corp in San Diego during his initial months of service. As an adult, he studied dance and participated in many community theater productions at West Shore Community College, Scottsville, Michigan.
His professional career in the arts began at West Shore Community College where he became that college’s first Managing Director of theCultural Arts Series. There he produced an annual summer theater series. In 1982-83, he was an intern for the Assistant Artistic Director at the Hilton Hotels in Las Vegas and studied the building of a major production starring Suzanne Sommers.
From 1985-1987, He held a similar arts management position at East Central College in Union, Missouri. In 1987, he was hired as a Professor of History and Theater at St. Charles Community College. While at SCC, the Mid-American Theater Company was created as a semi-professional performing arts company for the St. Charles, Missouri region. MATCO produced theatrical events and contracted for touring events.
In 2000, after many years in arts management and stage direction, the dream of merging history with theater took shape first as History Expo and later as The American History Theater. Retiring in 2013, he moved to San Diego where he founded the AHT of San Diego as a non-profit, community theater and educational entity whose mission it is to bring historical theater to the military community and the general public.
In addition to the American History Theater, Professor Berry teaches part-time at Palomar College and the surrounding area.
Amber Robinson, Vice President and Director of Communications
Amber Robinson is a non-profit vice president, communications and public relations director, public relations director, writer, editor and Army Combat Veteran. Amber’s time in service spanned 10 years and included three combat tours to Afghanistan. She served six years with the prestigious 10th Mountain Division, three years with Hawaii’s 25th Infantry Division and one year with U.S. Army Pacific, a Four-Star Command.
Her military career allowed her to travel all over the world and work with influential military leaders from Australia, the Philippines, Czech Republic, New Zealand, France and Afghanistan. She has worked as a military journalist in the volatile Korengal Valley, along the Pakistan border and in the Pech River Valley. As a deployed public affairs leader, she worked to shape information strategies for her command, coordinate press events, media coverage and one-on-one interviews. She has worked with prominent war correspondents from CNN, CBS and NBC. Her candor and expertise leant to her shop's reputation as the most sought-after unit for journalist embed in Regional Command East. Her expertise as a public affairs leader gained her a coveted Bronze Star.
Amber now dedicates all her time to helping fellow veterans as the Public Relations Director of The Veterans Museum at Balboa Park and as the vice president, co-founder and communications director of American History Theater, an official 501C3 she co-founded with fellow veteran, Theater and History professor, Hal Berry. The organization raises awareness around veterans, female veterans and under-represented demographics through theater, educational and special events.
Megan Miller recently moved to Denver, Colorado from Los Angeles and has a strong background in technical theater, photography, and film production. She realized her talent and drive to be in the entertainment industry in her hometown of Wentzville, Missouri, near St. Louis.
Megan began her journey into the entertainment industry as early as high school, when she began to stage manage shows at her high school and the local community college. After high school Megan moved to Chicago, where she continued to foster her love for the technical side of film and theater at Columbia College Chicago. There she attained her film degree, with a focus on producing and cinematography. A producing intensive program at CBS in Studio City brought Megan to Los Angeles, where she graduated with her Bachelor of Arts and has remained ever since.
Film degree in hand, Megan launched into the industry. She worked on films at the American Film Institute and worked as an electrician and camera operator/cinematographer on independent short films and features for 3 years. She eventually took one of the most rewarding positions of her life, as an instructor with a non-profit called Freshi Film Worx, where she was able to teach students of all ages in cities across the nation, about storytelling and the film making process.
Megan’s ambition has set her apart from her peers since she was a teenager. She now uses her production skills by managing software development and implementation projects in her field. She is a woman who has defined her own success. Her creativity and adaptability have allowed her to take the basics of her skill set and use them in a variety of ways to propel her to where she is today.
Liz Joyce, Assistant director of communications
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
NICOLE HEFFEL, BOARD CHAIRMAN
DR. STEVEN LOCKWOOD, VICE-CHAIRMAN
MARY SHUCK, SECRETARY
Demarise and David Milner
HONORARY MEMBER: CONNIE NALL
MELISSA MALLOY, Residence director
Melissa Malloy, a graduate of the University of Colorado Theater Department, an experienced actress and with years of organizational expertise is the Production Manager for the American History Theater. She will have authority over all of the theatrical productions and the staff and crews. Ms. Malloy appeared in “Waiting for MacArthur.”
Elizabeth VIRkLER, Company musical director
currently serves as the Associate Director of Music and Worship at Rancho Bernardo Community Presbyterian Church. In addition to her responsibilities planning and leading worship services, she also conducts the 70-voice Chancel Choir, Sanctuary Orchestra, and various auditioned chamber ensembles. Ms. Virkler heads the church’s concert committee and personally produces two programs of major works every year with the choir and orchestra, as well as directs the pit orchestra for the annual youth musical. Outside her full-time job, Ms. Virkler is an active singer and composer in the San Diego area, and is currently finishing her Master’s degree in choral conducting at San Diego State University. Elizabeth grew up in Columbia, Missouri, graduated from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, and spent six years leading high school and church choir programs in the Twin Cities before moving to San Diego in 2013.