Worley, Paul

Written by Linda Kirkpatrick on .



PK Worley

1932 -2011

As a member of the Scientific and Cultural Facilities Council in Jefferson County for six years, PK evaluated the 90 or so groups that applied to the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District for funding each year.  For a 3-month period he and 6 others on the Council read through the 18-page applications and then conducted 15-minute interviews to clarify points in the applications before declaring which of the organizations will be funded with the $1 million in SCFD tax dollars designated for Jefferson County.  In between grant cycles, PK informally counseled the groups on how to structure their programs and put forth the best applications to earn approval of the awards made each October.  He chaired the council for two years.

He was involved with the Evergreen Players for 25 years, serving as a board member most of that time and often as musical director.  Without title, he was a mentor to many, known for his kindness and sense of humor.  PK was largely responsible for modernizing the organization's sound capabilities.  He was quoted on the Evergreen Players' website as saying "Live theater depends on subtle bits of music.  Without it, the production is lifeless and without emotion."

He was considered the patriarch of a theatrical family, as his wife, son, daughter, and grandchildren were involved in acting and/or directing.  His final production (a month before his death) was "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," in which many of his family members participated -- onstage or behind the scenes.

In addition, he served as musical director for the Evergreen Chorale on a couple of shows.  He also served as a member of the Colorado Community Theatre Coalition board of directors.

In 2011 he chaired an outreach group for the Players -- a reenactment of old-time radio shows such as Fibber McGee & Molly and the Great Gildersleeve, complete with reproducing the sound effects that made audio entertainment so captivating.  The show was presented at senior communities where residents will identify with the shows from their younger days.

PK was named "Arts Person of the Year in 2007" by the Center for the Arts Evergreen.  In 1986 he was one of six named to the Topeka Civic Theater Hall of Fame in the inaugural year of the award.

PK and his wife, Donna, moved to Evergreen in 1978 from Kansas.  In Topeka, PK was instrumental in putting together the Topeka Civic Theatre in 1961, an operation that's still going strong in 2011 with a $2 million budget and a staff of 13.