Santa Barbara, CA — Kathryn R. Martin, an interim leadership and transition specialist with more than 25 years’ experience counseling and managing arts and cultural organizations nationwide, has been named interim executive director of the Santa Barbara Symphony. She will replace David Pratt, who was recently appointed chief executive of the Queensland Symphony Orchestra in Brisbane, Australia. Ms. Martin’s appointment is effective August 1.
“We are so pleased to have a professional of Kathryn’s caliber assume this important role as we conduct a search for a new executive director,” said Santa Barbara Symphony Board President Arthur Swalley. “She has an outstanding reputation and is nationally known in her field. We are grateful to have her leadership during this transition.”
A classically trained violist, Ms. Martin earned a bachelor’s degree in arts management at Shenandoah Conservatory in Winchester, Virginia, before beginning her career as artistic administrator of the San Diego Symphony. After managing the USIU International Orchestra and serving as production and facilities manager for the UC San Diego music department, she was named managing director of La Jolla Music Society, where she oversaw dramatic income gains from SummerFest, the Society’s celebrated chamber music festival.
As vice president of Arts Consulting Group from 2003 to 2015, Ms. Martin worked with more than 100 arts and cultural organizations, and served as interim executive director on numerous occasions. Most recently she served as interim president and CEO of the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts in Brookfield, Wisconsin, and as interim executive director of the Linda Pace Foundation in San Antonio, Texas.
In January she launched an eponymous consultancy specializing in leadership coaching and training. She is a frequent author and guest speaker.
A resident of San Diego, Ms. Martin serves on the Board of Directors for the Association of California Symphony Orchestras.
“This is an exciting time for the Santa Barbara Symphony, as it prepares to launch its 64th season,” said Ms. Martin, who was born in Santa Barbara. “I look forward to working with the Board and staff to continue to build on the momentum and strategic work that occurred under David’s leadership. And I can’t wait to experience the performances!”
The Santa Barbara Symphony is conducting a wide-ranging search for a long-term successor to Mr. Pratt.
The Santa Barbara Symphony was founded in 1953 on the belief that a special city deserves a special orchestra. Consistently lauded for its unique ability to present brilliant concerts, engage the community, and deliver dynamic music education programs, the organization prizes both innovation and artistic excellence, and is widely recognized as one of the region’s premier cultural institutions. Its award-winning Music Education Center serves some 5,000 students throughout Santa Barbara County each year. Charismatic Israeli conductor Nir Kabaretti was appointed music and artistic director of the Santa Barbara Symphony in 2006. For additional information, visit www.thesymphony.org.
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