Rondi Hillstrom Davis. Photo courtesy of

An independent costume designer and former theater professor died of cancer in Dallas in December; she was 67.

Rondi Hillstrom Davis, who lived in Preston Hollow, was born in 1953 in Evanston, Illinois, according to a Dallas Morning News obituary.

Davis moved to Dallas to attend Southern Methodist University, where she earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in fine arts and met her husband, Joseph Redmon Davis. Later, Davis was an assistant professor of theater at the university for five years.

She also taught at The University of Dallas and KD Studio’s Conservatory of Film & Dramatic Art.

Davis was known for her work in film, television, theater and corporate productions, according to her website. She is credited on film and television projects including The Big Green, 13 East, Full Moon in Blue Water and The Fig Tree. She created costumes for Gene Hackman, Patti LaBelle, Harry Connick Jr. and Shelley Winters, among others.

Locally, Davis designed costumes for Fort Worth Opera’s Three Decembers, the Dallas Symphony Orchestra’s Christmas Celebration, the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas.

Across the country, her work has been included in The Berkeley Repertory Theatre in California, Intiman Theatre in Seattle, Williamstown Theatre Festival in Massachusetts, the Magic Theatre in San Francisco and Shakespeare festivals in Colorado and Virginia.

Davis also created costumes for Coca Cola, IBM, Frito Lay, Sprint, Dell, Mary Kay Cosmetics and other businesses. In addition, she has produced costumes for Six Flags theme parks.

Davis was a member of the Costume Designers Guild, the Texas Association of Film and Tape Professionals, the Texas Motion Picture Alliance and Women in Film Dallas.

She also co-wrote a book, Together: Creating Family Traditions, with Janell Sewall Oakes. A “journal of family traditions, seasonal projects and recipes,” it encourages parents to begin their own traditions with their children.

Davis and her husband had two daughters, Genevieve and Alice.

Instead of flowers, the public is invited to make donations to The Arts Community Alliance in Davis’s memory.

The Arts Community Alliance (TACA), 1722 Routh St., Ste 800, Dallas, TX 75201. 

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