Artistic and Administrative Staff
karen p. thomas
artistic DIRECTOR and conductor
Karen P. Thomas has served as the artistic director and conductor of Seattle Pro Musica since 1987. With Seattle Pro Musica she has produced ten critically-acclaimed commercial CD recordings, and has received the Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence and the ASCAP-Chorus America Award for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music. She has appeared as guest conductor at the Bergen International Festival, International Conference on Women in Music, the Alliance World Festival of Women’s Singing, Festival Vancouver in Canada, the NPR radio show Saint Paul Sunday, and at the American Guild of Organists National Convention and the American Choral Directors Association NW Division Convention, among numerous others. Read Karen's full bio.
Katie Skovholt holds an MBA from Pacific Lutheran University, as well as a Bachelor of Music Education degree. She is a member of Chorus America and the Greater Seattle Choral Consortium and has served on the Board of Directors of the Tahoma Girls Choir. Ms. Skovholt is active on national conference panels and committees and most recently represented Seattle Pro Musica as part of the national cohort of the Intrinsic Impact Audience Project, a two-year study of choral music audiences done in partnership with Chorus America and arts consulting firm WolfBrown. Prior to joining the staff at Seattle Pro Musica, Ms. Skovholt worked for Pacific Lutheran University's School of Arts & Communication.
Ms. Skovholt is in demand as a soprano soloist in the Puget Sound region, hailed for outstanding and expressive singing. Recently, she was a featured vocalist on the 2015 GRAMMY Award-winning album Winds of Samsara. In addition to her position with Seattle Pro Musica, she serves as Director of Music for Richmond Beach Congregational Church.
MANDY GOLDBERG, OPERATIONS AND ADMINISTRATIVE ASSOCIATE
A lifetime musician and lover of choral music, Mandy Goldberg has been immersed in the arts world from a young age. She graduated from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a minor in Theatre. In Minneapolis, she pursued choral singing and theatre performance, while building her nonprofit administrative skills interning with Minnesota Citizens for the Arts and the Women’s Environmental Institute.
Mandy most recently served as the Program Director of Seattle Music Partners, an after school music program whose mission is to create equal access to quality music instruction. Fundamental to her work is the belief that music transcends differences and grounds us in community. Through this lens, she looks forward to supporting the mission of Seattle Pro Musica.
Kelly Foster Griffin
Kelly Foster Griffin holds a bachelor’s degree in Music Education from Pacific Lutheran University and a Master of Music Education from Holy Names University in Oakland, CA. She received her Kodály Certification from The Hartt School, University of Hartford and two additional summer studies at the Kodály Pedagogical Institute of the Liszt Academy of Music, in Kecskemét, Hungary. Since 1988, Kelly has taught general music and choir in the Northshore School District. She has her National Board Teacher Certification and is a recent national past president of the Organization of American Kodály Educators, serving on the national OAKE board for eight years. In 2018, Kelly was named “Elementary Music Teacher of the Year” by the Washington State Music Educators Association.
Kelly’s previous choral and conducting work includes 20 years teaching various levels for the Columbia Choirs of Metropolitan Seattle, 18 years serving as cofounder/executive director of Summer Fun! A Performing and Visual Arts Daycamp for Children and 8 years directing the Schola Cantorum Youth Choir and Jubilate! Young Women’s Ensemble at Saint James Cathedral in Seattle. Kelly loves singing in choirs and has sung soprano in the St. James Cathedral Choir, Cascadian Chorale, and Opus 7 Vocal Ensemble. Since 2010, she has taught Musicianship and Pedagogy courses for the Kodály Levels Program at Seattle Pacific University.
Currently, Kelly codirects and sings in the Seattle Eesti Segakoor which recently participated in the 150th Anniversary of the “Laulupidu” (Songfest) in Tallinn and Tartu, Estonia.
Jenn Newland joined Seattle Pro Musica as a singer in 2001, and has proudly served on the board and as Auction Committee chair in the past, and now as Stage Manager. Jenn's priority is ensuring performance management details are presented in a focused manner, allowing the singers more time to enjoy the part they love best - singing unique and challenging music beautifully, so as to touch the souls of our audience members.
In her professional life, she is the Property Manager for Rain Shadow Properties and Investments, LLC, and also works part time as a Limited Practice Officer for First American Title.