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VanderCook College of Music

Board of Trustees

George Quinlan Jr., Chairman

George Quinlan Jr

George Quinlan Jr. serves as the President of Quinlan & Fabish Music Company. Prior to joining Quinlan & Fabish, Quinlan worked in marketing at both the Selmer Company and G. Leblanc Corporation. In addition to serving on the VanderCook board, Quinlan also serves on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Music Merchants-International Music Products Association, and is secretary/treasurer of the National Association of School Music Dealers. He has served previously on the board of directors of the South Shore Brass Band. Quinlan has Bachelor of Music Cum Laude from the University of Miami in Florida.

Herald “Chip” Johnson, Vice Chairman

Herald “Chip” Johnson
A Chicago-based native of Chicago’s South Side, Herald “Chip” Johnson (MMEd ’07) began his undergraduate studies in music performance at Fisk University in Nashville. While attending Fisk, he toured for three years with the internationally acclaimed Fisk Jubilee Singers, under the direction of Professor Matthew Kennedy. His Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance was completed at Roosevelt University in Chicago; he later received a Master of Education degree from DePaul University in 1999, and an MMEd degree (with an emphasis in choral conducting) in 2007 from VanderCook. He also holds a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Curriculum and Administration from National Louis University received in June 2008, where he is also completing his dissertation in Educational Leadership and Administration at National Louis University.
Johnson’s value of education afforded him opportunities to begin teaching at Crane Tech High School in 1994, later moving to John Hope College Prep High School in 1996, where he remained for 14 years. In 2009, his love for teaching, learning and educational administration has afforded him other leadership opportunities, serving as an assistant principal of the Matteson Elementary School (SD162), and the founding director of the Southland College Prep Charter High School (Richton Park, IL). In 2012, Johnson returned to the Chicago Public Schools to serve as Deputy Chief of Schools for the North/Northwest High School Network, the Garfield Humboldt Elementary School Network, and Chief of Schools for Network 6, managing seven high schools and 31 elementary schools in the central part of the city’s school district. 
Currently, he serves as the Chief Officer for the Office of Family and Community Engagement in Education (FACE2) where he manages the Office of Local School Council Relations, the FACE management team, the Office of Faith Based Initiatives, and the thirteen Parent University programs across the District, and the Volunteer Program department. 

John Huston, Immediate Past Chairman

John Huston
John Huston is a partner at Tressler, LLP, in downtown Chicago.  Huston has established himself as an expert in all areas of tort litigation with an emphasis on complex products and professional liability in the fields of architecture and engineering. Huston has a bachelor’s degree in industrial administration and a BE in electrical engineering, both from Yale University, and a JD with a concentration in litigation and administrative law from Loyola University of the Chicago School of Law.
Huston served as a lieutenant in the United States Naval Reserves, where he was the Electrical Officer on the flagships of the NATO (2nd) and Mediterranean (6th) fleets, and an engineering instructor at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center as part of the Nuclear Power Program. Huston is also a percussionist and has been a VanderCook board member since 1998.

SohYoon Atac, Secretary

SohYoon Atac

SohYoon Atac received her bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Chicago, graduating with honors in three years. During her time there, she translated classical Korean poetry into English for the university’s literary publication. She received her JD from Chicago-Kent College of Law and later founded Atom Law Group, specializing in immigration services.

Steve Beck

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Steve Beck bio coming soon.

Stephen Buzard

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Stephen Buzard is organist and choirmaster for the Cathedral Choir and principal musician of the Cathedral, responsible for leading, managing, and coordinating the music program as an effective part of the Cathedral’s overall ministry.

Formerly acting organist and director of music at Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue, New York City, Stephen is a graduate of Westminster Choir College and Yale University Institute of Sacred Music. He was the winner of the Arthur Poister Competition and was recently named one of the top 20 organists under 30 by the Diapason magazine. Stephen’s premier recording, “In Light or Darkness,” (Delos) has received wide critical acclaim. He is an Associate of the American Guild of Organists.

Stephen studied organ performance with Ken Cowan and Thomas Murray, and improvisation with Jeffrey Brillhart and Bruce Neswick. He became assistant organist to John Scott at Saint Thomas Church Fifth Avenue and served as acting organist and director of music following Scott’s untimely death.

Stephen grew up in a pipe organ household, his mother, organist-choirmaster of the Chapel of St. John the Divine, Champaign, Illinois; his father, president and artistic director of Buzard Pipe Organ Builders. While in high school, he began organ studies.

In addition to his church work, Stephen performs solo organ recitals under the management of Karen McFarlane Artists, Inc.

Scott Casagrande

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Scott Casagrande was Director of Bands at John Hersey High School in Arlington Heights, IL for 22 years and retired in June, 2021 after completing 33 years of teaching in Illinois Public Schools.  He taught high school, middle school and elementary students in suburban, urban and rural settings over the course of his teaching career.

Mr. Casagrande currently serves Music for All as a Music Education Consultant coordinating the National Festival, Affiliate Regional Music Festivals and Affiliate Marching Band events.  He is also a consultant with MusicFirst software, as well as an administrator for the Dr. William P. Foster Project involving CBDNA, NBA and Music for All serving bands in historically under-served and under-resourced communities.   He is a Past-President of the National Band Association.

Under Mr. Casagrande’s direction, the John Hersey Symphonic Band and Jazz Ensemble performed as a featured ensemble in the Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic.  Ensembles under Mr. Casagrande’s direction were selected to perform in  24 Illinois Superstate Concert Band Festivals, two Illinois Music Educators Association Conventions and four Music for All National Concert Band Festivals. The Hersey Symphonic Band was named the Illinois Superstate Concert Band Festival Honor Band four times and the band program was awarded the Sudler Flag of Honor by the John Philip Sousa Foundation.  Jazz Ensembles under Mr. Casagrande’s direction were named Honor Band many times at both the Purdue Jazz Festival and Jazz in the Meadows, the two largest jazz festivals in the Midwest.  The Hersey Marching Huskies were consistent state finalists and named Class 4A Champions four times during Mr. Casagrande’s tenure.  Mr. Casagrande was inducted into the State of Illinois Marching Championship Hall of Fame in 2022.  

Loren Chernoff

Loren Chernoff

Loren Chernoff is a Speech/Language and Learning Disabilities Therapist who has worked in public, private, and alternative schools, working with children with special needs, gifted children, socio-economically disadvantaged children, and socio-economically privileged children from preschool to age 21—She is currently working with music therapists when related to speech/language issues at Lawrence Hall, a social service agency on Chicago’s north side—She received her bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University and her master’s degree from DePaul University.

Andrew Collins

headshot of Andrew Collins

Andrew Collins was born and raised in Indianapolis, IN. A 2002 graduate of Pike High School, Andrew knew early on that he wanted to share his passion for music by pursuing a career in music education. After high school, he enrolled at the VanderCook College of Music, where he graduated as Valedictorian/Summa cum laude in the spring of 2006.

Andrew served as Director of Choirs and Music Theory/AP Music Theory at H.D. Jacobs High School in Algonquin, IL from 2006 – 2011. Choral ensembles under his direction received many honors – including two invitations to perform at the Illinois Music Educators Association All-State Conference (2008, 2011) and an invitation to perform at the National School Board Association’s National Conference, held in San Diego, CA (2009).

In the fall of 2011, he began serving as one of two choral directors at Metea Valley High School in Aurora, IL, where he also taught Music Theory, AP Music Theory, and string technique courses. A tireless servant to the profession of music education, Andrew served as the ILMEA District IX Chorus Representative from 2011 until 2014.

Andrew made the challenging decision to leave the field of music education in the fall of 2014 to pursue a Masters of Arts in Arts Administration at Indiana University. Driven by a relentless pursuit to make a global difference through the arts, Andrew’s primary research focus was on cultural policy, creative placemaking, and the implications of different arts funding models.

After graduation, Andrew began working at Conner Prairie Museum in February of 2016. During his tenure at Conner Prairie, Andrew has been an integral part of the Development, later Advancement, team in securing new, and sustainable, funding to help increase access to the museum’s renowned programming, create innovative new exhibits and experiences, and grow the museum’s physical footprint through capital expansion projects.

Andrew currently resides in Carmel, IN with his wife Courtney and their cat, Luna. They excitedly await the construction of their new home in McCordsville, IN, where they will move at the end of November.

He is honored and humbled to be considered for a seat on the VanderCook College of Music board of trustees, and is excited to give back to an institution that has given him so much.

Robert Conrad

headshot of Robert Conrad

Rob Conrad never really envisioned how far his advertising career might take him, despite the fact that less than three months into his very first job he found himself in Hollywood shooting commercials for one of the world’s foremost advertisers.

Working for the Mad Men

Since then, Rob went on to work as a copywriter and creative executive at the nation’s leading advertising agencies, where he helped develop hundreds of original selling ideas for a wide range of brands. His résumé includes DDB, Leo Burnett, Ogilvy and JWT, where he built a portfolio that includes award-winning work for United Airlines, McDonald’s, Allstate and the Northwestern Mutual Financial Network, plus packaged goods work for Kellogg’s, P & G and Unilever that helped his assigned products achieve number one status in their respective categories.

From Beauty Care to Healthcare

In 2002, Rob was recruited to bring his conceptual skills to the field of healthcare marketing, where he navigated the regulatory landscape of the industry to create wide-ranging campaigns that successfully launched what have become showcase pharma brands.

The Rewards of Academia

From 2009-2018, Rob served on the faculty of Northwestern University as an adjunct lecturer, where he enjoyed teaching a class on Message Strategy at the Medill School of Journalism and Integrated Marketing.

An Entrepreneurial Adventure

In 2010, he teamed up with former Burnett colleague Clay Purdy to found Canteen Creative Communications. Their original client roster included Lowe’s, Sports Illustrated, CareerBuilder and several Chicago-based startups. After successfully completing a strategic communications plan to support a capital campaign for NorthShore University Healthcare System, Rob and Clay  shifted their focus to helping not-for-profits achieve their fundraising goals. Clients included the McCormick and Medill Schools at Northwestern University, the Cancer Research Foundation at the University of Chicago, and Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego. In 2018, Rob and Clay published a book sharing their experiences, entitled Inspiring Generosity: Marketing Techniques for Visionary Fundraisers.

Giving Back

In 2019, Rob left Canteen to pursue some long-held personal passion projects, which include writing, painting, music and philanthropy. He has served as a board-level advisor for a London-based media company, a Silicon-Valley based private equity fund and several local social organizations and charities, including the Art Institute of Chicago. A skilled public speaker, he has been interviewed by numerous local news outlets, as well as Prime Time Live, 20/20, and all the major trade publications.

Joel DeFayette, Alumni Association Representative

headshot of Joel DeFayette

Joel DeFayette (MMEd ’11) graduated from the University of North Texas with Bachelor of Music Education with a concentration in Voice in 1998. Originally from Dallas, Tx, Joel has taught general music and choir for both public and private middle school students for over 23 years. Joel completed his master’s degree at VanderCook in 2011 upon returning to teach in Dallas for four more years. Before moving to Chicago in 2015, Joel performed with the Dallas Symphony Chorus and served 2 years as Bass Section Leader. He currently teaches at the Frances Xavier Warde School Holy Name Campus as 4th – 8th  General Music and Choir Teacher, as well as school’s Cantor and Liturgical Music Coordinator. Joel also serves as Instructional Special Teams Lead, the Steering Committee Accreditation for Fine Arts, and the school’s Equity and
Justice Forum. Joel is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership in Higher Education at DePaul University Lincoln Park campus where he was inducted in the Golden Key Honour Society in 2018.

Stanley Dietzel

Stanley Dietzel
Stanley Dietzel has served as the Managing Director at JPMorgan Chase and its predecessors for 34 years and as a consultant at Northern Trust. Dietzel has a B.A. in Philosophy from Carleton College and an MBA from University of Chicago in Finance.
Dietzel is actively engaged with his community. He offers his knowledge in finances at the Chicago Center for Economic Progress as a tax prep volunteer, and mentors at College Bound Opportunities in Highland Park. Furthermore, he supports the local environment as a River Steward for the Lake County Forest Preservs and as a Gardener at Heller Nature Center in Highland Park and the Chicago Botanical Garden. His astute knowledge and experience in finance provides valuable insight to the Board of Trustees, but his love of music and personal connection to VanderCook are what truly brought him to the College. 

Liz Dunne

Liz Dunne

Liz Dunne currently leads marketing and consumer research for Uber in Chicago. She previously worked at Benenson Strategy Group in Los Angeles, where she led all aspects of research to develop compelling communications, from proposal development and the execution of research and quantitative/qualitative data analysis. Prior to Benenson, Dunne worked at MSHC Partners where she executed direct mail and online persuasion, membership, and IE programs for federal, state-, and county-level candidates and organizations like Rock the Vote, AFL-CIO, National Education Association, and Sierra Club. She also spent several years at a small government affairs shop in Washington, DC, where she focused on intellectual property protection for the fashion design industry as well as funding opportunities for important health care IT and transportation projects. A Chicago native, Dunne holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

Saul Friedgood

Saul Friedgood

Saul Friedgood is Executive Vice President of Eastman Music Company, a leading maker and supplier of fine stringed instruments. He earned his BA in political science at American University.

Jon Harris

Jon Harris

Jon Harris is President of Harris-Teller Inc., a full-line music products distributor based in Chicago. Harris served on the board of directors for the International Music Products Association from 2008 to 2010. He is past president and current historian of the Music Distributors Association and a member of the National Association of School Music Dealers. He also served on the Latin School of Chicago Alumni Board from 2008 to 2011. Harris received a BA from Tulane University in New Orleans in 1992.

Hermene Hartman

Hermene Hartman
Hermene Hartman is one of the most significant and influential black women in media and American publishing.  She is a rounded media personality addressing the soul, spirit and sensibility of America with insight, curiosity, historical context, wit, and reality.  Her behavioral scientist education is replicated in her writings and commentaries.  Hartman holds four college degrees (sociology, philosophy of education, psychology and business).  She was Vice Chancellor of External Affairs at City Colleges of Chicago, the nation’s third largest community college system and a professor of behavioral science disciplines.   
Hartman’s commentaries transform mindsets, literally. She broadens the black conversation to include dialogue and analysis offering deep thoughts and opinion from entertainment, the political scene, to taboo topics surrounding racial and social issues.  As an intense yet thoughtful interviewer, Harman’s style has been described as somewhere between Barbara Walters and Diane Sawyer, always asking the “right questions” and providing the most insightful comments.  Hartman is often called upon by media outlets such as The O’Reilly Factor, CNBC, FOX, WVON, ABC, NBC, and WGN Radio and TV to comment on politics and election night analysis.  
Hartmen is also founder and publisher of NDIGO, a weekly Chicago newspaper founded in 1989.  She is sought as a lecturer, guest speaker, moderator for media expertise, business, and comment on popular culture. Hartman is the author of three books: A Lasting Impression, A Collection of Photos of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.; and Love Moods, a book of original poetry. She and David Smallwood are the co-authors of NDIGO LEGACY:  Black Luxe 110, a collection of profiles from Ndigo newspaper which provides a modern portrait of Black Chicago and those who have impacted it. 

Mark Heckler

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Mark Heckler bio coming soon.

Dr. Mead Killion

Dr. Mead Killion

Dr. Mead Killion has spent 21 years in the hearing aid industry, and founded Etymotic Research, Inc., in 1983. Dr. Killion helped develop the first subminiature ceramic microphone, subminiature electrets microphone, and subminiature directional microphones. He is probably best known for developing earmold coupling systems to improve both the useful bandwidth and the sound quality of hearing aids. Dr. Killion earned degrees in mathematics from Wabash College and the Illinois Institute of Technology, and completed his doctorate in audiology at Northwestern University. Dr. Killion has taught and given lectures on audiology around the world and is a fellow of the Acoustical Society of America and the Audio Engineering Society. He has been presented with many awards in appreciation of his contributions to the field of hearing. Dr. Killion is also an accomplished choir director, violinist and jazz pianist.

Irwin Kornfeld

Irwin Kornfeld
Following his years in senior management positions with Billboard Magazine, Forbes, McGraw-Hill and Dow Jones & Company, Irwin Kornfeld founded In Tune Partners in 2003 and currently serves as its CEO. In Tune Partners publishes the music education magazines In Tune MonthlyMusic Alive! and their websites. In Tune and Music Alive! reach a half million student musicians in grades 4-12 and their teachers in 45,000 music classrooms across America.
In Tune publishes Teaching Music magazine for the National Association for Music Education (NAfME), Drum Corps International magazine and The DCI Yearbook for Drum Corps International, WGI Focus for WGI Sport of the Arts, and a series of music education textbooks in partnership with the Hal Leonard Corporation. In Tune also manages public relations and channel development for hearing health company Etymotic Research.
Kornfeld is also CEO of Westchester Media, Inc., which he founded in 2003. Westchester Media produces concerts and other live events including ASCAP’s “I Create Music” EXPO,” in Los Angeles. Westchester Media also publishes Playback magazine for ASCAP, and represents and the ASCAP Inside Music e-newsletter to advertisers. 

Paul Lavender

Paul Lavender

Paul Lavender serves as Vice President of Instrumental Publications for Hal Leonard Corporation. He directs the product development and marketing of Hal Leonard’s extensive catalog of performance publications for orchestra, concert band, marching band, and jazz ensemble, as well as instrumental books, collections and methods. His longtime association with renowned film composer John Williams has produced the prestigious John Williams Signature Series, featuring Williams’ authentic film scores and concert music for professional orchestras. In addition, Paul has served as music supervisor and arranger for several of Williams’ concerts and special events. Also a prolific writer, Paul has contributed more than 1,200 arrangements and compositions to the educational and concert repertoire, and he continues to be one of the most widely played writers today.

David Mann

David Mann

David Mann is a senior partner in the Business Practice Group at the national law firm of Holland & Knight. Mann is an active member of the Chicago and American Bar Associations, serving on various committees and serving on the Board of Managers of the Chicago Bar Association. Mann is the chair of the Sun-Times Fellowship Awards selection committee, serves on the Honorable Abraham Lincoln Marovitz Scholarship selection committee, pro bono and public service awards selection committee, and is panel chair of the inquiry board of the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission of the Illinois Supreme Court. Mann is also an adjunct professor at Northwestern University School of Law. He received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Notre Dame and a J.D. from Northwestern University School of Law.

Christopher Motogawa

Christopher Motogawa

Christopher Motogawa is a Director at Quest Turnaround Advisors LLC.  Quest provides business consulting, crisis management and turnaround advisory services to company stakeholders. He attended Northwestern University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in 1994, and DePaul University, where he earned his CPIM Certification in 1996. Previously, Motogawa was a managing director for The Brandenburg Group, Inc. He was also the chief financial officer of MotorCoach Industries, Inc., corporate controller at SourceLink, Inc., and principal for Harmonie Coffee and Beverage. Throughout his career, he has served in various financial and accounting positions. Motogawa also serves on the Board of Directors of Changing Worlds, a nonprofit educational arts organization that works with students to improve literacy through community-building writing and arts programs. He has been on the VanderCook Board since 2007.

Linda Crabtree Powell

Linda Crabtree Powell
Linda Crabtree Powell graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor of Music with Distinction and a Master of Music in Piano from the American Conservatory of Music.  Her book Compelling Choral Concerts, on the art of choral programming, was recently published by GIA Publications.  She has studied piano with Mark Wessel, Dimitri Pomperno and Mary Sauer, and sings with the Bach Cantatas in River Forest.
Powell is an experienced and noted choral director and has taught all levels of music.  She also founded the BRAVO! Arts program in Oak Park.  While at Trinity High School in River Forest, her choirs performed in Canada, Ireland and Spain along with invitations from the Art Institute of Chicago. Currently, she is conducting the Oak Park River Forest Encore Choir, which has grown to over 90 members.  

Adrienne Thompson

Adrienne Thompson
Adrienne Thompson is the Project Director of Chicago Musical Pathways Initiative, a 3.5 million dollar program designed to change the face of professional orchestra in America so that more black and Latinx musicians are included. CMPI finds the most talented and motivated young musicians in Chicago and then removes all barriers (financial or other) that could prevent these young people from achieving the highest level of orchestral performance. 
Thompson is a veteran in the music education field. She has held a leadership role in the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s acclaimed Talent Development Program, which also supports Latinx and black students seeking careers in classical music. Thompson was also a high school-level orchestra director in Georgia, and holds a degree in flute performance from Chicago’s Sherwood Conservatory of Music and has an MBA from Indiana University.

Frank Tsamoutales

Frank Tsamoutales
Frank Tsamoutales is founder and CEO of Tsamoutales Strategies, a business and government relations firm located in Tallahassee, Florida.  Tsamoutales advises some of America’s most recognizable and trusted Fortune 500 companies.  His strategic thinking skills are known as some of the most effective in the global consulting community.
Most recently, Tsamoutales Strategies was hired to lead the bi-partisan political activities for the ONE Foundation, founded by pop star Bono along with Bill and Melinda Gates, Warren Buffet, George Clooney, Brad Pitt and other notable entrepreneurs and entertainers.

Chris Vanderwall

Chris Vanderwall
Chris Vanderwall (BMEd ’06) is the Director of Bands at Plainfield Central High School in 2018. Prior to PCHS, Vanderwall was Director of Bands at John F. Kennedy Middle School in Plainfield. He earned BMEd degree at VanderCook in 2006 while studying percussion with Kevin Lepper, and earned a Master of Music Education degree at the University of Illinois in 2011, studying percussion with William Moersch, Ricardo Flores and Bolokada Conde. At Plainfield Central, Vanderwall’s responsibilities include teaching AP Music Theory, directing the Wildcat Marching Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Musical Pit Orchestra, and Percussion Ensembles in addition to co-directing the Symphonic Bands.
Vanderwall continues to maintain an active role in the music community. He served as the District IX Junior Level Band Representative for the Illinois Music Education Association and plays timpani with the Elmhurst Symphony Orchestra. Vanderwall also maintains professional memberships with the Percussive Arts Society, National Band Association, and the National Association for Music Education in addition to proudly endorsing Innovative Percussion and Etymotic Research ear protection.

The mission of VanderCook College of Music is to enrich the lives of present and future generations by developing uniquely skilled music teachers who exhibit strong character, professionalism, and a commitment to excellence.

© 2022 VanderCook College of Music. All Rights Reserved.
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