The National Council of the Arts will welcome a celebrated and award-winning theatrical trailblazer to its creative forces as President Barack Obama plans to appoint Center Theatre Group director-producer Diane Rodriguez to The National Council of the Arts, the White House announced last week.

Rodriguez is the Center Theatre Group's artistic associate director, who has held various positions since 1995, including associate producer and director of new play development, as well as director and resident artist of the Latino Theatre Initiative.

In addition to her role at CTG, Rodriguez serves as the board president of Theatre Communications Group in New York.

She is known "as a force in Latino theater, having co-founded El Teatro de La Esperanza and the comedic Latins Anonymous," according to

Rodriguez was a leading actress for the Chicano theatre company, El Teatro Campesino (Theatre of the Farmworkers), from 1973 to 1984. El Teatro Campesino also reportedly produced comedic sketches for United Farm Workers founder Cesar Chavez.

In 2007, she won an OBIE Award (which celebrates both off-Broadway and off-off-Broadway productions) for playing multiple roles in in Heather Woodbury's "Tale of Two Cities: an American Joyride on Multiple Tracks." 

Rodriguez, who resides in Echo Park, California, received a B.A. from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

"We're thrilled that the president has chosen from within the LA theatre community, and we wish Diane the best of luck with her new position," added the LA Stage Alliance.

The National Council on the Arts advises the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, who also chairs the council, on agency policies and programs. It reviews and makes recommendations to the chairman on applications for grants, funding guidelines and leadership initiatives, according to the council's official website.

"The Council was established through the National Arts and Cultural Development Act of 1964, a full year before the federal agency was created by Congressional legislation. Its first members were appointed by President Lyndon Johnson and included noted artists such as Ralph Ellison, Paul Engle, Elizabeth Ashley, Gregory Peck, Oliver Smith, William Pereira, Minoru Yamasaki, George Stevens Sr., Leonard Bernstein, Agnes de Mille, David Smith, and Isaac Stern."

Currently, The National Council on the Arts is led by Jane Chu, chairwoman of the NEA.