Committee Reports

President Will Gruver  reminded us of the importance of The CART Fund buckets on our tables collecting "Coins for Alzheimer's Research Trust." Loose change goes a long way for research.  
  • Paul Harris Fellows: 
    • Ben Senger - first-time PHF
    • Jeff Brady - PHF +3
    • Whitney Shephard - PHF +7
  • District Conference update:
    • April 27-30, 2023 in Callaway Gardens
    • Friday night 4/28 party being hosted by Metro!
  • Social:
    • Post-Holiday Social: December 27th at Miracle Bar at Thompson Hotel (2nd Floor)
  • Ian Lewis (guest of Jeff Brady) - Southern Oak Advisory/Capstone Benefits Consulting


Featured Speaker: Gene Dobbs-Bradford, Savannah Music Festival

We enjoyed hearing from Gene who is the new Executive Director of Savannah Music Festival. Mark your calendars for the festival coming up March 23 - April 8, 2023. Joining him were three beloved SMF staff, Ryan McMaken (Artistic Director), Larissa Thut Davidson (Marketing Director), and Kat Clark (Development Manager).  

Gene was formerly with Jazz St. Louis for 23 years. He is an Eastman School of Music graduate and his former college roommate Marc Chesanow is a busy professional upright and electric bass player here in Savannah. When Gene was on the NEA Grants Panel in 2011 he noticed that SMF was doing great things and offered unique programming. He thought to himself he'd love to have a job leading the Savannah Music Festival and 10 years later the top job opened up and he applied for it. The board and staff welcomed him with open arms in 2021. Savannah is fortunate to have him here!

Savannah Music Festival is Georgia's largest musical arts event and one of the largest cross-genre music festivals in the country. The economic impact on the city is tremendous, with last year boasting $12M spent by festival-goers. 

2023 will showcase 90 performances by 70 different acts! Six things Gene highlighted include:
1. Four nights at Trustees Garden outdoor stage! Tedeschi Trucks Band, Buddy Guy (two nights), and Galactic/Cory Wong/Nate Smith
2. Excellent Classical programming with Phillip Dukes taking the reigns as Associate Artistic Director
3. Exciting Co-Bills - getting two shows for the price of one
4. Strongest Jazz Programming ever - featuring octogenarians and Terence Blanchard, who co-wrote the Mo' Better Blues soundtrack
5. Return of International Artists following the COVID-19 pandemic
6. Explorer Pass - any student can attend any general admission concert accompanied by a chaperone. This is a new program being funded through SMF Education/Musical Explorers.
As a 501(c)3 nonprofit music organization, SMF relies on the support of generous donors and sponsors, without whom the festival and their education programs would not be possible. Wish to support the festival further? Go here for more details. Peruse the lineup and purchase tickets for the spring festival here
Be sure to follow Savannah Music Festival on Instagram, Facebook, or via their website!