Staff & Board

artistic staff

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Karen Bruno
Artistic Director

Karen Bruno is excited to join Northwest Girlchoir as the new Artistic Director. Her primary responsibilities include conducting Amabile, Amore, Ensemble, and the combined choirs. Karen was the Artistic Director of the Lawrence Community Girl Choir Program in Appleton, Wisconsin for 25 years. During that time, her choirs performed at state and regional choral conferences. A frequent guest clinician, Ms. Bruno has worked with youth and treble honor choirs throughout the Midwest, including the South Dakota All-State Choir, the AWAKE Choral Festival for Kodaly educators, and the Beyond the Notes Festival created to serve public school ensembles. She taught choral music education classes at Lawrence University’s Conservatory of Music after having taught in two public school districts in Wisconsin and at an international school in Dakar, Senegal. She has served the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) in a variety of ways at the state, regional, and national level. Highlights include several terms as the Children’s and Community Youth Choir Repertoire and Standards Chair for the North Central region, being elected president of the Wisconsin CDA, and serving as a founding member of ACDA’s national standing committee for Advocacy and Collaboration. Karen holds a Bachelor of Music and Economics from Smith College and a Master of Music degree in Music Education from Boston University. She has a son who lives in Edinburgh, Scotland and a very opinionated, fluffy, FIV-positive cat named Katya. In addition to teaching, she loves to garden, cook, read, and hike.

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Charity Rasmussen
Vivace Conductor

Charity is excited to be the new Vivace Conductor having previously led Prep Choir in Northwest Girlchoir's 49th season. She has been teaching elementary music in the Edmonds School District for five years, and spent one year teaching in Lake Washington School District before that. In her current position, she teaches K-6 general music, an elective 4-6 choir, and an auditioned 6th grade handbell choir. She is also an accomplished pianist and vocalist, and sings with the Evensong Choir and Women's Compline Choir at Saint Mark's Episcopal Cathedral in Seattle. In 2018, the Evensong Choir spent a two-week residency singing in cathedrals in England, and Charity is excited to return for another two-week residency in August 2022. She holds a Kodaly certification and a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education degree from Seattle Pacific University.

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Jura Litchfield
Fresca Conductor

Jura Litchfield comes to Northwest Girlchoir with a passion for teaching young people and over thirty years of experience as a music teacher, conductor, and arts administrator. Jura has taught music and choir at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, in Massachusetts, Berlin, Germany, and New York (City and State). She has served as Director of Music at churches in Maine and New York. She has also worked as the chair of a school music department, as a director of a community arts center, and as a development director for a non-profit arts institute. Jura has Kodály and Orff certification and degrees from Columbia University (Master of Arts) and Barnard College (Bachelor of Arts).

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Haley Gabler
Prep Choir Conductor/Teacher

Haley Gabler is thrilled to be joining the Northwest Girlchoir community as the new Prep Choir Conductor/Teacher. She currently teaches K-8 General Music at Villa Academy in the Laurelhurst neighborhood in Seattle. Haley is an active performer in the Seattle area, singing with several professional choral ensembles in addition to serving as a Section Leader for the Cathedral Choir at St. James Cathedral. She is a graduate of St. Olaf College with a B.M. in Music Education, and has completed Kodaly Level I training. Haley is a proud alumni of the Laurence Community Girl Choir program where she sang for nine years, five of which were spent under the direction of Karen Bruno, the newly appointed Artistic Director of Northwest Girlchoir.

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Minju Kim
Lead Collaborative Pianist

Minju Kim joins Northwest Girlchoir this year as Lead Accompanist. A native of South Korea, she has been active as a soloist, chamber musician and collaborative pianist, currently at Shoreline Community College and Seattle University. Minju's avid interest in chamber music led her to play at Bowdoin International Music Festival and Music Academy of the West as a fellow in collaborative piano. Also, she served as a chamber pianist for chamber groups playing piano trios at the Heifetz International Music Institute. Minju holds degrees in piano performance from Seoul National University in Korea (B.M.), Indiana University (M.M. and P.D.), and University of Texas in Austin, (D.M.A.), as well as a M.M. in collaborative piano from New England Conservatory.

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Dori Baunsgard
Collaborative Pianist, Vivace

Dori Baunsgard is a Pacific Northwest native who returned to Seattle in 2011 after conducting choirs and teaching music for many years in Tokyo, Japan and Mussoorie, India. Dori has an avid interest in multiple styles and genres of music from all parts of the globe. In her accompanying career, she has played for many great conductors, including Henry Leck, Edith Copely and Elena Sharkova. Besides her accompanying work she is the conductor of Con Brio Women's Choir and co-conductor (with Beth Ann Bonnecroy) of Wanderlust Women's Choir of Seattle.  Dori holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Seattle Pacific University and a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Western Washington University.

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Youngjin Joo
Collaborative Pianist, Amabile

Youngjin Joo is an organist, pianist, and collaborative artist. One of her earliest memories is playing the piano sitting on her mom’s lap. Her mom was her first piano teacher and has been her greatest supporter. She was introduced to the organ by the parish priest during her senior year of high school. These two keyboard instruments have been her passion. She has a great interest in improvisation in various styles, from baroque to jazz. She studied music theory/composition and music education at Seoul National University and holds a Master of Music degree in Organ Performance from the University of Washington. She has held musical posts at churches in Greenwich, CT, Aston and Wayne, PA, and she is the organist at Bellevue Presbyterian Church, where she accompanies the Sanctuary choir and Pneuma ensemble.

Administrative staff

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Jill Clymer
Executive Director

Jill Clymer is proud to be part of the Northwest Girlchoir community, sharing her collaborative leadership and creative energy as Executive Director. Coming from a family of musicians, she studied piano with her grandmother and went on to major in music at Wesleyan University with an arts administration focus. She is pleased to share her passion for music along with her non-profit management experience. Jill spent 5 years honing her fundraising and arts management skills with the Seattle Symphony, and 11 years engaging the community through special events for Washington's largest hunger relief agency, Food Lifeline. In 2009, Jill's event Food Frenzy won a national Feeding America award for the most innovative fundraising program of the year. As a choral musician herself, Jill knows personally the value of connecting with people through music. She lives in North Seattle with her husband, percussionist Rob Tucker, her daughter and NWGC chorister Rosalie, and her son Leo.

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Kevin Carson
Development Director

Kevin Carson sang in choirs throughout his schooling and joined Seattle Men’s Chorus as soon as he moved to Seattle after college. After realizing corporate work life was not for him, Kevin made the move to non-profit arts and began working for Seattle Men’s Chorus. Although he never imagined himself doing fundraising, he quickly discovered the joy of talking to people about their shared love of choral music and helping them ensure its success. In the twenty years he worked for Seattle Men’s Chorus and Seattle Women’s Chorus, Kevin learned a lot about non-profit arts administration, especially as it applies to choruses, and he is excited to bring that experience to Northwest Girlchoir. He strongly feels that music is a powerful tool in the important work of social change and is thrilled to work with Northwest Girlchoir to empower women’s voices in the on-going work of creating a more just and beautiful world.

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Ann Selznick
Choir Administrator

Ann Selznick joined Northwest Girlchoir in 2021 to further her life-long passion for music. Prior to relocating with her family to Seattle, Ann built a career in recording studios and music publishing in New York City. Her music business vocation began with assisting audio engineers at the eclectic studio Water Music, recording independent artists such as Yo La Tengo, Freedy Johnston and the Feelies. She later managed operations at midtown Manhattan's Sound On Sound Studios, hosting top major label and international recording artists of all genres including choral, classical, pop, jazz, rap, hip-hop, rock, advertising, film and foley. Ann then pivoted to Cherry Lane Music Publishing to audit royalty statements for the Elvis Presley and John Denver catalogs, DreamWorks Pictures and thousands of additional compositions. Whether setting up microphones or tracking down royalties, she enjoys and excels working behind the scenes supporting the creation of music. Ann earned a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from Pennsylvania State University. She has been an active volunteer and board member for Crown Hill Village Association and Ballard (High School) Performing Arts Boosters.

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Bridget Schuster
Choir Operations Coordinator

Bridget Schuster is a current parent (to Ellen, Vivace chorister), former board member, and choir alum! She is happy to be back helping Northwest Girlchoir rock it this 50th Anniversary season. Her passions when it comes to choir include building community, ensuring longevity, and preserving history. Bridget also cares deeply about diversity, equity, and inclusion and recently obtained a certificate in DEI from the University of Washington. In her “free” time, Bridget is an attorney and also loves baking cakes, reading, and watching British murder mysteries. Bridget looks forward to getting to know the girls and making them all feel comfortable, safe, and seen at choir! Here’s to a great year. 

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Rachel Oliver
Marketing Coordinator

Rachel Oliver grew up in the Seattle area singing in school choirs as well as the Seattle Children’s Chorus. She continued in choral music and private voice instruction when attending Shoreline Community College and Western Washington University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication. Currently, the Mill Creek Chorale is where she continues her joy for singing. Music has always been such an important part of her life, and she is so excited to be able to help foster that interest and passion for young girls. Before joining the team at NWGC, Rachel obtained many years of experience as a marketing and communications professional honing her design skills and use of creative expression along the way. She hopes her collective experience with companies ranging from radio, theatre and live music venues will create the perfect balance as the Marketing Coordinator. Rachel resides in Kirkland with her husband Nathaniel Chapman, who is also a recording artist. They recently welcomed their first child Evelyn in February 2021 and think they will definitely have a future Northwest Girlchoir chorister on their hands.

Board

Name
Position
Community Affiliation
Nidhi Agrawal
Vice President
Professor of Marketing & International Business, University of Washington
Ryan Buckmaster
Board Member
Senior Manager, Innovation Development, University of Washington
James Goldsmith
Board Member
SUP Commercial Banking Officer, Truist Bank
Kaeli Grant
Board Member
Event Planner; Northwest Girlchoir Alum
Laura Hopper
Board Co-President
Nurse Practitioner, Woodcreek Healthcare/Multicare; Northwest Girlchoir Alum
Becky Kelley
Board Co-President
Senior Policy Advisor for Climate to Washington State Governor Jay Inslee
Jennifer Lund
Board Member
Massage Therapist; Northwest Girlchoir Alum
Christine Perez
Secretary
Medical Hospitalist at Providence Regional Medical Center, Everett
Jason Rogers
Treasurer
Consultant, AssuredPartners MCM
Anna Shope
Board Member
Clinical Associate Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology, University of Washington
Bina Shukla
Board Member
Founder & Executive Director, Ahana
Joseph To
Board Member
Choral Director, Tukwila School District

OPen

Position

Interested in joining our board of directors?