Suzuki Association of the Greater Washington Area

SAGWA Board of Directors

About the Board

Members of the Board of Directors are elected by SAGWA's voting membership. SAGWA's Board of Directors is comprised of nine individuals, of whom at least five must be active teachers using the Suzuki approach. Among the teachers there must be at least one teacher from each SAGWA instrument division (a Division Chair). At least two board members must be lay-parents of students receiving musical instruction from teachers using the Suzuki approach.

The Board terms are two years in length and include eight or nine meetings per year, typically on Sunday afternoons. Board members are responsible for membership, finance, marketing, fundraising, website, newsletter and operational aspects as an umbrella organization for the various institutes and divisions.

SAGWA Board Members for 2016-17

Active Board Members

Marissa Murphy, Chair

Marissa Murphy, a native of Buffalo, NY, is the Founder and Director of Washington Suzuki Strings, and serves as Principal Second Violin of the Maryland Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Murphy is the newly elected Chair of the Board of Directors for the Suzuki Association of the Greater Washington Area- SAGWA. Ms. Murphy’s Advanced Ensemble has performed at the White House on three occasions, for Vice President Biden at his residence, for the Ambassadors of Zambia and Norway at their respective embassies, soloed with the Maryland Symphony Orchestra, and performed at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Her students have been prizewinners in the Marlin-Engel Competition, the Maryland Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition, and have achieved “A Levels” in their American String Teachers Association Exams. Ms. Murphy received a B.M. in violin performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music and a Double M.M. in violin performance and pedagogy from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. Her major teachers include Martin Beaver, Linda Cerone, Ronda Cole, Mary Cay Neal, and David Russell. Ms. Murphy has performed on NPR’s “All Things Considered” as part of a tribute to Mozart, and has also performed at the National Repertory Orchestra, Encore, Spoleto, and Bowdoin festivals. She has soloed on multiple occasions with the Maryland Symphony Orchestra and the Clarence Symphony. Ms. Murphy has performed with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, New World Symphony, the National Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Annapolis, Clarence, and Alexandria Symphonies, and is the former Second Violinist of the New Music Associates Quartet in residence at Cleveland State University. She has given recitals for President Jimmy Carter to honor his Nobel Prize, and at the Cleveland Museum of Art and St. Paul’s Cathedral Recital Series, and is on the faculty of the Greater Washington Suzuki Institute and the Buffalo Suzuki Strings Summer Workshop. Ms. Murphy is the former Associate Chair Suzuki Strings and Violin Faculty at the Levine School of Music and has been published in the Suzuki Association of the Americas National Journal and the American String Teachers Association Journal. She currently serves on the American String Teachers Association Board of Directors for the MD/DC Chapter. Ms. Murphy is registered with the Suzuki Association of the Americas- SAA having completed all levels 1-10 of Suzuki teacher training with Ronda Cole and Mary Cay Neal.

Marissa Murphy - President and Director of Development

Elizabeth Cunha - Membership and Social Media

Eric Davenport - Treasurer

Laura Frazelle - Events Coordinator

Naomi Kusano - Piano Division/Committee Chair and Website Liaison

Ale Leupold - Event Insurance

Chris Sanchez - Greater Washington Suzuki Institute Representative

Karen Bartman 

Sarah D'Angelo

Christian Simmelink 


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