Since the death of Edgar Baitzel in spring 2007, Los Angeles Opera has been without an official chief operating officer. Board chairman Marc I. Stern has been filling in on a volunteer basis, aiding general manager Placido Domingo in day-to-day company operations.
But now the economy is forcing Stern -- who serves as vice chairman of TCW Group Inc. and is a senior officer of the global financial services company Societe Generale -- to focus his attention on these two very prominent day jobs. So Friday it was announced that Stephen D. Rountree, president of the Music Center since 2002, will be doing double duty as interim COO of the opera, a position that is expected to last about a year until a permanent replacement is named.
Rountree, former executive vice president and chief operating officer of the J. Paul Getty Trust, begins the new opera job, a paid position, on Monday.
-- Diane Haithman