Board of Directors

2023-2024 Board of Directors

Board Bios

Andrea Alert

Andrea Alert graduated from Western Michigan University in 2008 with a Bachelor of Music degree and in 2013 she received a Master of Music in Viola Performance degree from the University of Northern Iowa. After graduating from WMU, Andrea began her teaching career as a substitute teacher in Indiana working primarily with middle school and high school band and orchestras and elementary, intermediate, and junior high general music. Since coming to Iowa in 2010, Andrea has expanded her teaching efforts throughout the Cedar Valley in various outreach programs as a music instructor and substitute teacher in Waterloo and Cedar Falls. She had maintained a large private studio at West Music in Cedar Falls for several years and had previously taught at the Marion Music Academy and at the University of Northern Iowa Community Music School. In 2018, Andrea began teaching at the Orchestra Iowa School as a private string instructor and was a Fifth Grade Fiddles instructor. In addition to private teaching, Andrea is also an orchestra teacher at Hoover Middle School in Waterloo. 

Before coming to Iowa, Andrea was Associate Principal Viola with the LaPorte Community Symphony Orchestra in LaPorte, IN in 2009. She was also a member of the Elkhart Symphony Orchestra in Elkhart, IN for eight years. Andrea currently performs regularly as a substitute violist with Orchestra Iowa, the Dubuque Symphony Orchestra, and the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra.

Jo Capoccioni

Born and Raised in Reinbeck, Iowa, Jo graduated from UNI in 1973 with a BA and later an MA (1986) in music education. She taught public school music for 34 years, most of that time at Peet Junior High School in Cedar Falls. Jo retired in 2008. Jo also directed Cedar Harmony for 25 years and is in her fifth year with the Mixed Chorus at Allen College. She has been the organist for more than 15 years at Trinity Episcopal Parish in Waterloo and was the music coordinator and choir director for 10 years. Jo is the chairperson for the Young Artist Concerto Competition through the Waterloo Cedar Falls Symphony. Jo’s main instrument is the piano having played since the age of 3. Other hobbies include knitting and attending concerts with a particular affinity to chamber music concerts. Jo has been a board member of Cedar Valley Chamber Music since its inception. 

E.J. Gallagher

Edward J. (E.J.) Gallagher III is a retired attorney and lives in Waterloo. He has been on the CVCM board for several years and is currently serving as its Secretary. He has been active in many community activities and presently is also on the boards of the Waterloo Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra, Grout Museum, Winnebago Council Boy Scouts of America, Cedar Valley United Nations and Black Hawk Bremer League of Women Voters. His interest is music reflects past instrumental and choral music instruction from grade school and college and participation in musical and choral productions from grade school through law school. His music appreciation was fostered by his parents and his daughter is now a composer and musician in Chicago.

Austin Jacobs

Austin Jacobs first joined the board as the student representative when he was an undergraduate at the University of Northern Iowa. Graduating in 2017 with a degree in instrumental music education, he now teaches elementary orchestra for the Iowa City Community School District. When he is not teaching, he enjoys playing violin and getting outside to camp, hike, and play disc golf among other outdoor activities.

While at UNI, Austin thought of Cedar Falls as his second home and quickly garnered great respect for the fine arts culture that the Cedar Valley cultivates. He is especially impassioned and enthralled by the high quality music that the CVCM provides through the house concert series and subsequently the fabulous summer festival. A regular attendee at CVCM events, Austin is glad to have many connections with both board members and regular performers with the festival. Since joining the board, he has held several positions in marketing and education and is currently serving as the board president.

Martha Kroese
Now a retired music educator, Martha taught for a total of 37 years, first in Janesville and then in Waterloo.  She finished her career at Lou Henry Elementary.  She is a graduate of William Penn in Oskaloosa, and has her MA in Music Education from UNI.

Martha has lived in the Cedar Valley for over 40 years, and loves the opportunities the area provides for live music of all sorts.  She has been involved with the Iowa Music Educators Association, the Iowa Alliance for Arts Education, Friends of the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Art Center, the Waterloo Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra, Friends of Sartori Hospital, and the AARP Tax Aide program. In addition, she serves on the Foster Care Review Board, and is completing training to serve as a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate). Martha believes that all children should be offered the opportunity to experience live performances, and this belief guides her volunteer efforts. She sees how enriching music is to all lives and doesn’t want poverty or social status to be barriers to experiencing music, either as a listener or as a maker of music. In her spare time, she enjoys travel, reading, crochet and quilting.

Jan Moore

Jan Moore grew up in a very small town in NW Iowa, and has a B.S. in Medical Technology from the University of Iowa.  Jan and her husband Steve moved to the Cedar Valley in 1978, just prior to becoming parents.  After spending several years as a stay-at-home mom with their two daughters, she worked part-time at Sartori Hospital as a laboratory technician, retiring in 2018.  Jan has been active in a number of organizations over the years, including the UNI Suzuki program, the Cedar Falls Swim Club, the Waterloo Cedar Falls Symphony, assorted church choirs, and church finance, among others.  She claims to have a “food hobby”, and loves to cook and bake, constantly seeking out new recipes.  Additionally, she has decent skills at the sewing machine, has crafted beaded and/or metal jewelry, and above all, likes to travel to visit her daughters, their spouses, and the grandchildren.  She is so very grateful that she lives in an area that can offer such a wide variety of beautifully executed music, as she believes music lifts our spirits and enriches our lives. 

Char Strub

Char is a retired physical therapist and athletic trainer.  A graduate of the University of Iowa, she and her husband Tom lived in MN for 15 years before returning to their home state of Iowa.  Her professional career was in orthopedics and sports medicine, working with patients of all ages.  Her professional volunteer activities included volunteering for sports medicine coverage for Iowa Games, high school and collegiate sports, Olympic Festival, Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, and Pan American Games.   Her musical interest started with piano lessons as a child, elementary and high school band and chorus.  While musical performance ended with high school, music appreciation continued.  Char was thrilled to learn of CVCM performances when she returned to Cedar Falls.  She feels fortunate to have such  extraordinary chamber music available locally, presented in a wonderfully inviting and accessible  manner for the Eastern Iowa audience.

Mike Whitson

(coming soon)