About Gary

Gary ColeGary D. Cole was raised in the Chicago area and graduated from Williams College and Stanford Law School, where he acted in numerous theater productions.  Gary practiced law at the Central Intelligence Agency before writing a play based loosely on his Agency experience.  While a partner at a Portland, Oregon law firm, Gary in 1995 founded a professional theater company, CoHo Productions, that still performs in the black box theater he developed for the company.

In 2003, Gary was appointed by the Bush administration to head the $60 million annual grants program at the National Endowment for the Arts.  The administration later withdrew his appointment, reportedly because of two provocative plays filmed by a theater video company founded by Gary called StageDirect.  Gary has written a memoir about his odyssey through the arts and politics entitled Artless.

Black Box is Gary’s first novel.  Drawing on his extensive experience in the theater and in business, Black Box is a story of players, on stage and off, making deals to save or sell their souls.

Gary now resides in North Carolina, where he founded a regional theater festival called Theater of the American South.  He is married to Amy Cole and has two children, Graham and Alaina. 





Black Box is a nicely paced tale, told with insight and affection for both the theater and the suspense genre – a nifty mash-up of Ibsen, Shakespeare, and Mickey Spillane.”

Paul Frellick, Deep Dish Theater Company Artistic Director