The award is established in honor of the late production manager and technical director who mentored many technical theatre artists and will be given away each year at the Junior Theater Festival beginning in January 2014. The scholarship will be granted to the technical theatre student who most exemplifies commitment, curiosity, collaboration and creativity in technical theatre. It includes a cash award to be applied to college or advanced training in technical theatre, as well as mentorship sessions from a technical theatre professional. All groups attending the festival will receive information on the application process.
"Mentoring came as naturally to Sharidan as laughing," Timothy Allen McDonald, founder and CEO of iTheatrics said in a statement. "She loved learning how to do things the very best way and then sharing that knowledge gleefully with anyone who was interested. One of Sharidan's best traits was allowing you to make your own mistakes. This scholarship will continue Sharidan's legacy of providing a helping hand to those with intellectual curiosity and an established interest in technical theatre."
Giles was one of the first women admitted into her local branch of The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States union (IATSE local # 50). For the past 18 years she worked for the Walt Disney Company in Orlando, FL, where she stage managed productions such as Finding Nemo: the Musical, IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth Fireworks Spectacular and The Lion King. She passed away on Friday, April 26, after a short illness.