Thursday, May 22, 2014

Scott Showalter named new president and CEO of Oregon Symphony

From the Oregon Symphony press release earlier today:

Oregon Symphony Board Chair Karl Smith today announced the appointment of Scott Showalter as the Symphony’s new President and Chief Executive Officer, following a nearly two-year search.

“We have been selective and exacting in the quest for our next President,” Smith said. “And it has been well worth the wait. Scott has everything we’ve been looking for: a keen and strategic mind, strong leadership skills, a proven fundraising track record, deep knowledge and passion for classical music, and a respect and appreciation for musicians. We believe that these attributes and his energy make him our ideal leader for a new era.”

Music Director Carlos Kalmar voiced his pleasure as well: “Having Scott as our new President is wonderful. He is smart, personable, and a good communicator. I look forward to achieving our vision for the future with him. These are exciting times for the Oregon Symphony and will be exciting times for our community as well.”

Showalter is a classically trained pianist who received his undergraduate dual degree in Economics and German Studies from Stanford University and an MBA from the University of California, Los Angeles. He has served as the Vice President for Development of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, the Associate Vice President of Alumni Relations and Development of the University of Chicago, and the Associate Dean for External Relations of Stanford Law School. Showalter is an associate of the Aspen Leadership Group, a nationwide consulting firm for nonprofit leaders.

Showalter, 41, said he looks forward to living in Portland and to building on the Symphony’s 118-year history. “Carlos and the orchestra are making our growing audiences very happy and there is incredible opportunity ahead. I look forward to working with the board, musicians, and administrative team to realize our potential.”

He stressed that this is an auspicious time for the orchestra, and that “with the right partners and support we can strengthen our role in the Oregon community.” He is scheduled to join the Company on July 1.

Showalter replaces Interim Co-Presidents Mary Crist and Janet Plummer, who have led the Symphony since the search began in August 2012. Smith thanked the pair for a remarkable job of moving the institution forward. “Under their leadership, we finished our fourth season in a row in the black and are confident of doing it again this year.” Plummer and Crist will resume their jobs as Chief Financial Officer and General Manager, respectively.

The Oregon Symphony is nearing the end of the 2013/14 season. The 2014/15 season, featuring a full slate of classical, pops, kids, and special concerts, begins with a Chris Isaak concert in July with the bulk of the season getting underway in September.

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