Michael Alstad, Executive Director
Michael Alstad joined Music Center of the Northwest in January of 2007. “When I first walked through the doors, I could feel the warmth and caring that exemplifies Music Center. Music Center provides people with an opportunity to make a profound difference in their lives through music. It is an honor and privilege to provide leadership to such a wonderful organization.” Michael has been involved in school and community music programs for the past 35 years in the United States and Canada. His educational background includes both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Music Education from Eastern Washington University. In addition to his duties as Executive Director, he is the leader of Centerpiece, Music Center’s resident jazz ensemble, and conducts the Around the Sound Community Band.
Janice Gockel, Director Emeritus
Janice founded Music Center in March of 1989 and served as Executive Director of Music Center for thirteen years. Still an active faculty member, she also works with the Greenwood-Phinney Chamber of Commerce, and performs with Philharmonia Northwest, and other organizations. In what remaining spare time she has, Janice is also an award winning baker, which is to great benefit of the faculty and staff.
Kendal Keyes, Director of Administration & Student Services
Kendal joined the Music Center office staff as Administrative Coordinator in 2014. Prior to joining Music Center, she worked in Development at a performing arts center and music school in Eugene, Oregon. Kendal holds a degree in Music Business from University of Puget Sound and is an active violist.
Ryan Schultz, Director of Educational Outreach & Partnerships
Ryan Schultz joined Music Center in September of 2015. “I am thrilled to become a part of Music Center. The opportunity to bring music and musical instruction into the lives of students who might not otherwise be able to afford it is very important to me.” Ryan has a diverse career as a performer, educator and administrator spanning over two decades. When not working, Ryan enjoys spending time with his family and watching professional U.S. football.
Nicole Reimer, Student Services Coordinator
Nicole Reimer became a member of the Music Center’s office staff in May of 2017. “I was so excited when I found the Music Center, their goal to share music with everyone who comes to their door is so uplifting and important to me. Music has the ability to foster all around growth in people and I am happy to be part of a team that encourages everyone to experience this.” Nicole moved to Seattle after completing a Bachelor’s degree in cello performance from Whitworth University where she also worked as a student in the music office. She enjoys spending her free time reading and trying out new baking recipes.
Monica Allen, Music Together Director
Monica Allen is a South Carolina native graduating from the University of South Carolina with a degree in Music Education. With a focus in music education, Monica has been teaching master classes and private lessons for several years. She has also taught Elementary, Middle, and High School music programs earning several awards for ensemble work. As well as teaching marching bands and concert bands, Monica has been working with early childhood music programs and teaching private clarinet lessons. Monica teaches Music Together® classes several times a week for babies through toddlers and the Big Kids classes for 5 to 7 year old students. Monica has recently began teaching through the Royal Conservatory Music Development Program and has her students recognized at the highest level of achievement through the method.
Board of Directors
Kevin P. Fox,
With over 20 years of participation at Music Center of the Northwest, either as volunteer, Board member and currently member of the Centerpiece Band, Kevin aspires to nurture and enhance Music Center’s goals of music access for all, regardless of means or skills. Born into a multi-generational musical family, Kevin also serves on the Boards of ArtsFund and Classical KING FM. He’s Chair Emeritus of the Pacific Hospital Preservation and Development Authority. Kevin is a Senior Vice President for US Trust, Bank of America Private Wealth Management where he’s worked for almost 30 years. He’s a member of the Seattle Estate Planning Council and serves on the King County Library Planned Giving Council. Kevin is happily married to Lynne, and his two kids both participated in Music Center activities.
Ross Miller is a Financial Advisor with Morgan Stanley’s Wealth Management group. He learned and became enthusiastic about Music Center in his last job, working with past-president Brian Paulen. At age 5, he began studying cello as a student of the Suzuki Method, and has been an avid musician and music-lover ever since. He collects and plays guitars, and is currently focused on mastering Country & Western-style techniques. He lives with his wife, Kelly, and daughter Emmy, in West Seattle, and travels every weekend with his family to Music Center to participate in the Music Together program.
Laura Doehle’s background in recruiting and HR has led to her to head up Resourceful HR’s business development and sales efforts. In this capacity, she enjoys taking the weight off executives’ shoulders through creative, business-oriented HR solutions. Laura has an MBA from Auburn University and a BS from the University of Illinois. She enjoys playing flute with the Around the Sound Community Band. The opportunity to join the Music Center of the Northwest Board in June 2016 was one she couldn’t pass up as she fully appreciates the transformative power of music and wants to ensure everyone has access to high-quality musical experiences.
Cindy Zu has been an avid musician all her life, taking piano and violin lessons at the Eastman School of Music from a young age. She has performed with numerous ensembles, including the Rochester Philharmonic Youth Orchestra and most recently the University of Rochester Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra. She began her career at J.P. Morgan in Hong Kong, Shanghai, New York, and Seattle in various roles within the Corporate Investment Bank and Asset Management. She became the Head of Business Development and Strategy for an early stage AI fintech startup and she's currently a Business Development Executive at PitchBook Data, focusing on the Private Equity, Venture Capital, and M&A space.
Jeanette M. Davis-Loeb is the Founder & CEO of the Rising Oak Foundation, a national 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation supporting the holistic development of black boys. She is also the VP of Dynamic Industries LLC, specializing in property development and asset management. Currently, Jeanette is a member of the Association of Black Foundation Executives, and The Coalition of Schools Educating Boys of Color. She is also a former member of the boards and committees of the Washington Women’s Foundation (General Member), Vashon YMCA, Vashon Allied Arts Organization, Pacific Northwest Advisory Board of the United Negro College Fund, and the Chair of their “A Mind Is Annual Giving Society.”
Mr. Hulak has over 25 years of international experience in corporate development, M&A banking, private equity and operations at such multi-national firms as Microsoft, BEA Systems, Hewlett Packard, JP Morgan and Goldman, Sachs & Co. At Microsoft, he led a team supporting various Microsoft business units in acquisitions, investments and divestitures, and managed Microsoft’s China Investment Program. He is an Adjunct Professor at Seattle Pacific University’s School of Business and Economics and is very active in his community with board memberships at the King County Library System Foundation and Bloodworks NW.
David retired in November 2017 after 36 years as an Information Technology professional. He now writes short stories and plays saxaphone in The Around The Sound Community Band. He took up violin from 5th grade through high school, and did not play again until he was 50 years old. He believes that there is joy and completeness in making music, also focus and discipline in learning to make better music. Since 2006, David has donated annually to the various MCNW scholarship funds, donated music equipment and instruments, volunteered for painting and lighting projects as well as helped every year with the annual fundraising gala.David hopes that his passion and commitment can help the MCNW bring the benefits of music to others.
Debra developed her love of music at an early age, where classical piano lessons opened the doors to a variety of great experiences over the years. Her position as IT Development Manager at Pivotal is the latest challenge after over 25 years in the Seattle tech industry at startups (Aventail, Isilon Systems) and big players (UW, EMC) alike. Debra also spent 10 years serving on the board of the Data Management Association's Seattle chapter. Her professional background is in software development, data management and analytics, CRM and system integrations. She also presented at several conferences over the years including Salesforce's Dreamforce, Forcelandia and Grace Hopper.