Born in Queens, NY in the U.S, C. Meranda Flachs-Surmanek (they/them/theirs) is a civically-engaged artist, theater maker and urban planner. They have been recognized for their arts engaged leadership through a Visiting Fellowship with Skidmore College’s Storytellers' Institute, and speaking engagements across the world.
Their dual-degree master’s in Urban & Regional Planning and Theatre’s Directing & Public Dialogue focus on the centrality of the arts to navigating complex social issues. Meranda is a Coach with the Center for Communicating Science, with a previous appointment as an Adjunct Instructor.
Past projects include the development of a community engagement specialist training program for artists and community advocates with Civic Arts, and creative programs that address moral injury and burnout with healthcare workers at 20 hospital across the U.S. as a Lead Facilitator with The Clinic Performance, and Artist-in-Residence at Carilion Clinic.
Meranda’s Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry and working class upbringing are important to their aesthetic process and approach to organizing.