Women’s History Month Spotlight: Linda Major

From the Thespian Hall of Fame to 30 district wins, she’s done it all


Stephanie Gunterman

Linda Major has a wide range of achievements. She is part of the Thespian Hall of Fame and has won over 30 district UIL competitions.

For 35 years, she has stayed at what she calls her home, teaching generation after generation of theatre students and directing award-winning shows. She spends hours at this school working with her students and helping them achieve the most they can.

Linda Major has watched the fine arts program grow dramatically and is the chair for it. She has a BSE from Mary Hardin-Baylor and a master’s degree with an emphasis in directing from Texas State. She has won over 30 district UIL one act play competitions, been inducted into the Thespian Hall of Fame and created a legacy.

“I think it was my junior year in college,” Major said. “I had first started college with a major in drama, not really knowing whether I wanted to act or go to New York. Then I changed my major to speech therapy. Decided very quickly that wasn’t what I wanted to do. It was my junior year that all of the sudden the light bulb went on and I said ‘I want to teach theatre.’ ”

For someone to have a job for 35 years, one would think that they have a ‘favorite thing’ about it. Majors lies within her students.

“It would be watching kids have an understanding of what their role is, to see the excitement in their eyes when they get it,” Major said. “I think one of my most favorite moments of seeing a kid achieve something in theater was when he looked up at me and said ‘I didn’t know I was this talented.’ So thats pretty cool and special.”

Major began teaching here in 1982 and had previously taught in Killen and Anchorage, Alaska.

I quite frankly never saw anything that I wanted to do more than what I was doing right here.

— Linda Major

“Well certainly when I started teaching theatre at Leander, it wasn’t my intention that I would be here 35 years,” Major said. “It was a good place, it was a program that had never had anyone in it before to develop it, so I just kind’ve found my home.”

After a few years, Major left to get her master’s degree and thought she was going to leave leander, but had a change of heart.

“I quite frankly never saw anything that I wanted to do more than what I was doing right here,” she said. “So I’ve stayed and I’ve watched the program grow from not having a stage and 11 kids in my entire theatre program, to where it is now. We have a Performing Arts Centers that I was able to be involved in the development of the PAC being built and watching the program grow.”

Major hopes to be an inspiration to others.

“I know that because of things I’ve done, many high schools across the state of Texas now do some of the same things,” she said. “For example, our cabin retreat that I do before we go to one act play. I started that like 30 years ago and it’s grown and people across the state do it. Just kind’ve setting the standard for what it would be in LISD.”
After her journey with this school, she will soon retire and has some thoughts on her legacy.

“I think if I had a legacy it would be for setting the bar high,” Major said. “For my program, for fine arts and for setting the bar high for other LISD schools.”