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Samantha Teter: Executive Director
423.267.8583 Extension 2104


Samantha Teter has over 17 years of experience in arts and non-profit marketing, public relations, and sales. She moved to the Chattanooga area in 2012 from Denver, where she was Director of Marketing and Sales for the Colorado Symphony. Prior to that, she was Director of Marketing and PR for the Fort Wayne Philharmonic in Indiana. She came to the CSO in 2012 as Director of Marketing, and was promoted to Executive Director in March 2016

She holds a Masters of Business Administration degree in Marketing. She is a 2017 graduate of Leadership Chattanooga, and in her spare time, enjoys singing and performing in theatrical and vocal productions. She is a local National Anthem singer and performs it several times a season at Lookouts games. She is married and has a 14-year old daughter and two adult stepchildren, and recently became a grandmother.

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Kathy Allison: Operations Manager
423.267.8583 Extension 2113


Kathy joined the CSO in January 2009 as production coordinator. Kathy has over 30 years of experience in the Hamilton County School system serving as the Dean of Fine Arts at Chattanooga Center for Creative Arts, Coordinator, and Music Teacher. Ms. Allison has also worked as Wardrobe Mistress/Costume Coordinator for the CSO since 1977.

She holds a Master of Music in Music Education, as well as the Administration and Supervision Endorsement, from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Ms. Allison is a current or former member of International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees-Local#140, Chattanooga Music Teachers Association, Saint Paul’s Episcopal Church Handbell Choir, City of Chattanooga Public Arts Committee, and Delta Omicron Music Sorority.

Eric Anderson; Photograph by Brad Cansler
Eric Anderson: Personnel Manager
423.267.8583 Extension 2105


In addition to playing the Principal Bassoon, Eric Anderson also serves as the CSO’s Orchestra Personnel Manager.

Eric has been Principal Bassoonist of the CSO Orchestra and Bassoonist of the CSO Wind Quintet since 1996. He attended the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, where he received a Bachelor of Music degree and the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University for Post Graduate work where he studied with Benjamin Kamins. He has performed with the Florida Orchestra, the Virginia Symphony, the Bergen (Norway) Philharmonic Orchestra and the New Hampshire Music Festival. In addition to playing Principal Bassoon with the CSO, he currently plays Third/Contrabassoon with the Alabama Symphony.

Kayla Sullivan: Marketing & Communications Manager
423.267.8583 Extension 2114


Kayla joined the CSO as Marketing & Communications Manager in 2019. She is a University of Georgia graduate with a background in nonprofit marketing and video production, and she has previously worked with organizations such as Blood Assurance and the Walker County Chamber of Commerce. A Chattanooga area native, she is passionate about staying active in the community. She currently serves as a City Park Steward for the Chattanooga Parks and Recreation Department and volunteers with Southern Lit Alliance.


Amy Morgan: Education & Community Engagement Manager
423.267.8583 Extension 2100


Amy joins the CSO with over 15 years of experience in education, event management and volunteer coordination. An Atlanta native, she moved to Chattanooga in 2012 and holds a BBA in Hospitality Administration and an MS in Instruction and Curriculum Leadership. She was a school librarian for both Shelby and Hamilton County schools and is an avid reader. Amy is an active volunteer herself, speaking on behalf of the Mary Ellen Locher Scholarship Foundation to high school students in the Chattanooga area. Although not currently a musician, she played cello for seven years during her youth and has a deep appreciation for classical music and the arts.


Rebekah B. Cheney: Development Director
423.267.8583 Extension 2103


Rebekah Cheney joined the CSO as the Development & Special Events Manager in June 2018. She has worked in the philanthropic sector for over six years, spending time in both higher education development and philanthropic trust administration. Before joining the CSO, she served as the Principal Gifts Analyst at the Louisiana State University Foundation in Baton Rouge, LA, where she supported development officers through data maintenance and analysis, strategy development, development officer coordination, and training. She also helped support the foundation’s growing Principal Gifts program. Prior to that, she was a Philanthropic Trust Administrator for Wells Fargo in Winston-Salem, NC where she administered private foundations and other types of charitable trusts, and gained experience with scholarship and grant administration.

Rebekah holds a Masters of Business Administration degree and a Bachelors degree in Trust & Wealth Management from Campbell University. In her spare time, she practices calligraphy and is learning how to play the banjo. She and her husband have two cats and enjoy attending all types of concerts and sporting events together.

Cathy Dreger: Development Assistant
423.267.8583 Extension 4001


Cathy graduated from Moravian College in Bethlehem, PA, with a B.A. in Art History. Her work experience includes a variety of colleges and universities, in development and other areas. She and her husband are pleased to return to Chattanooga after a 12 year absence.


Sarah Harr: Executive Assistant and Bookkeeper
423.267.8583 Extension 2110


Sarah C. Harr, a native of Memphis, TN, completed a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Organ Performance with Dr. John David Peterson at the University of Memphis in 2012. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Church Music from Valparaiso University and a Master of Sacred Music degree from Emory University. Sarah has taught undergraduate and graduate-level Music Theory and Ear Training at the University of Memphis, Queens College in Charlotte, NC, and Cleveland State Community College in Cleveland, TN. She holds the Fellow Certification from the American Guild of Organists, is the Dean of the Chattanooga AGO chapter, and the Southeast Regional Councilor for Education and Certification. She is the Executive Assistant and Bookkeeper for the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera, the organist at First Christian Church in downtown Chattanooga, and the K-8 Music Teacher at Belvoir Christian Academy. Sarah’s husband, James, is the Director of Choral Activities at The McCallie School in Chattanooga, and they have a son, Oliver, who is six years old.


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Megan Chisom: Orchestra Librarian
423.267.8583 Extension 2108


In addition to performing as a member of the viola section, Megan Chisom serves as the CSO’s music librarian.

A native of Dallas, Texas, violist Megan Chisom began studying the violin at the age of six in a public school Suzuki strings program. Since agreeing to “try on” the viola at the age of twelve, she has performed across the United States as a chamber and orchestral musician. She joined the CSO in 2013. In recent years, Megan has performed as chamber music artist-in-residence at Piedmont College, principal viola of the Spartanburg Philharmonic, and as a member of the Greenville Symphony Orchestra, in addition to serving on the faculty of Erskine College as instructor of violin and viola. She joined the faculty of Lee University in the Fall of 2015 as instructor of viola, and began teaching viola at Chattanooga State Community College in 2016.

With wide-ranging repertoire interests, Megan is a frequent collaborator in chamber music performances throughout the Southeast, in addition to keeping an active solo and orchestral performance schedule. In 2011, she toured Italy as principal viola of the ARCO Chamber Orchestra, an ensemble with which she has recorded extensively on the Phoenix USA label. She is a trained music therapist, as well as a Suzuki-trained violin and viola teacher.

Megan is a graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree in viola performance from the University of Texas at Austin, and Master’s and Doctoral degrees in viola performance from the University of Georgia, with a doctoral minor in music theory.


Candice Ortenzo: Patron Services Manager
423.267.8583 Extension 2106


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Kayoko Dan: Music Director & Conductor


Gary Wilkes: CSOYO Conductor


A native Chattanoogan, Gary Wilkes is an alumnus of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where he received his Bachelor’s degree in Music Education. After graduation, he attended Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and was awarded a Master of Music Diploma in Bassoon Performance. It was at Southern Methodist University where he studied conducting with James Rives-Jones, associate conductor with the Dallas Symphony and the Colorado Symphony.

Over the past thirty-five years, he has taught both bands and orchestras in Texas and Tennessee. Currently, he is the orchestra teacher at the Chattanooga School for the Arts and Sciences. Gary is proudly beginning his twenty-first year as the music director of the Chattanooga Symphony Youth Orchestras and the conductor of the Chattanooga Youth Symphony.

Gary has professional affiliations with the National Association for Music Education, Tennessee Music Education Association, East Tennessee School Band and Orchestra Association, American String Teacher’s Association, National School Orchestra Association, International Double Reed Society, Tennessee Education Association, Hamilton County Education Association, and the American Federation of Musicians – Local 80. He recently completed a six-year tenure on the Executive Board of Directors with the Tennessee Music Education Association and is also past President of the Tennessee chapter of the American String Teacher’s Association. He also holds membership in the Phi Beta Mu Honorary Band Director’s Fraternity, and was recently honored as one of Tennessee’s outstanding teachers by the Board of the Tennessee Governor’s School of the Arts.

In addition to his teaching responsibilities, he is Director of Music at First Christian Church, Disciples of Christ. He is proud to be a husband to Lisa and Dad to Richard, Michael, Kathryn, Karen and Olivia.

Sandy Morris: CSOYO Philharmonic Conductor 


Sandy Morris is looking forward to working with talented musicians in her twenty-second season as Conductor of the Philharmonic Orchestra.  In her career as a musician/music educator in Chattanooga, she has conducted orchestras, bands, and choirs.  She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana as well as a Master of Music degree in Music Education and a Master of Music degree in Conducting from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.  Sandy has done graduate work in conducting and string pedagogy at the University of Iowa, Orchestral Institute of America, and the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and she has attended workshops sponsored by the League of American Orchestras, Conductors’ Guild, and the Waterville Valley (NH) Music Center.   Her conducting teachers have included Dr. Steven Bird, Dr. William Larue Jones, Kenneth Kiesler, and Dr. Marvin Rabin.

Sandy is also Conductor of the UTC Symphony Orchestra, Music Director for Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, and Assistant Conductor and flutist for the Chattanooga Community Orchestra and the Chattanooga Area Flute Society.  She also plays flute in Grace Notes, a trio that plays at area hospitals, churches, and senior centers. She was formerly Director of Strings and Music Theory at Center for Creative Arts and is active as a clinician, adjudicator, and arranger.  She has been honored as an Outstanding Teacher by the Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts and by Who’s Who Among American Teachers.  Sandy is a member of National Association for Music Education, East Tennessee School Band and Orchestra Association, National Education Association, MacDowell Music Club, and Sigma Alpha Iota as well as former State Orchestra Chair and All-State Orchestra Chair for the Tennessee Music Educators Association.  She enjoys spending her free time with her best friend and husband Ron as well as with son Michael and his family.

Amy Shannon: Interim CSOYO Prelude and Etude Conductor


Amy Shannon is a CSOYO alumni and is thrilled to serve as Interim Conductor of the Prelude and Etude Orchestras this year. She is a native Chattanoogan and holds a bachelor of music education degree from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. She has over 20 years of professional musical experience as a music educator, mentor, and performer. Since 1997 she has been teaching private cello lessons to beginner, intermediate and advanced students throughout the Southeast. She started ten new elementary string programs in the Orlando, Florida area. While teaching in Florida, she was awarded the Music Demonstration School Award by FMEA,became a mentor to first year teachers, and was in charge of designing orchestra programs for the entire county. After moving back to Chattanooga she began string programs at Nolan and Thrasher elementary schools and began teaching orchestra at Signal Mountain Middle High School. Her orchestra performed at many community functions, venues, and performed at the state capitol. During this time, she was master teacher of the String Project at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and was a member of ETSBOA and TMEA.

Currently, she teaches an after school elementary strings program at Boyd- Buchanan Elementary School, maintains a private cello studio at Mccallie and in the Hixson area, teaches at music camps and masterclasses in many Chattanooga area schools. She is a founding member of Somersault String Ensemble and performs throughout Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama. Amy is a member of The Cleveland Symphony Orchestra, Cadek Community Orchestra, and a sub with the Chattanooga Symphony. Amy is married to her best friend , Tyler, and is a mom to three sons, Owen, Tanner, and Blake.

Stephanie Pearson: CSOYO Manager and Chamber Ensemble Coordinator


Stephanie joined the CSO as Youth Orchestras Manager in January of 2018. Stephanie completed her undergraduate degree in Public Relations at the University of Georgia, where she also studied oboe with Dr. John Corina and marched in the Redcoat Band. Since moving with her family from Atlanta to Chattanooga in 2000, she has worked as a school library assistant in an elementary school, led a Girl Scout troop for 7 years, and directed a youth drama team for 15 years. In 2013 she graduated from the Holmberg Arts Leadership Institute and also founded the East Brainerd Community Theater, where she directs and produces full-length plays and musicals. Stephanie loves working with young people, and is excited to help provide student musicians with a wonderful orchestral experience in the CSOYO.