Leadership and Staff

Board of Directors


Mark Sherman, President
Physician, Pacific Eye

David Hamilton, Past President
Attorney, Frederickson & Hamilton, LLP

Jim Walker, Secretary
Business Service, SESLOC

Jessica Hoffman, Treasurer
PLM Project Manager, Gas and Process Division
Atlas Copco Mafi-Trench Company LLC


Joe Benson – Senior Corporate Counsel, MINDBODY

Becky Falasco – First Presbyterian Church of San Luis Obispo

John Gilbert – Principal, John Gilbert Co., Healthcare Executive Search

Greg Gillett – Attorney, Gillett Law

Bob Gordon – President, Gordon’s Floral Design Studio

Matthew Green – Director, Cuesta Sustainability Resource Center

Jeri Hocking – All for Health

Michael Hocking – Owner, Pacific Palace Painting


Michael Johnson – Co-founder, CTO Doculynx

Jill LeMieux – Director of Membership, San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce

Robert Lin

Karen Loewi Jones – Compliance Manager, Midnight Cellars

Stefan Podell – Principal Technical Architect, Perricone MD

Luis Gabe Quiroz – Agency Owner, Farmer’s Insurance

Mike Zigelman


Honorary Life Member

Clifton Swanson

Executive Director

Catherine Lansdowne

Executive Director

Lansdowne attended the prestigious Eastman School of Music and earned a Bachelor’s in music performance as an oboist. She performed professionally but soon discovered she enjoyed the administration side. She obtained a Master’s in arts administration from Indiana University and began her career at the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra in marketing and public relations. She continued in a marketing capacity for the American Association of Malaysia, the National Philharmonic in Washington D.C., and in advancement for the Smithsonian Institution.

Prior to joining the San Luis Obispo Symphony, Lansdowne spent three years at the helm of the Abilene Philharmonic in Texas. While there, she oversaw a restructuring, new programming and fiscal growth of the organization. Lansdowne’s creativity and leadership, her programming collaboration with the music director, along with great staff and volunteers, is credited with a turn-around of the Abilene Philharmonic’s fiscal resources, taking the organization from a multi-year deficit to multi-year profits. Using unusual locations and focusing on attracting families, Lansdowne is most proud of developing the young artist competition where the winner played in front of peers from grades 3-5, having the Philharmonic play a soundtrack with a Charlie Chaplin movie on the screen of the historic Paramount Theater and collaborating with National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature to bring programming like a party for children with an art activity and the film “The Snowman,” which was inspired by the illustrated book by the same name. Lansdowne is also a film lover and has stretched the boundaries of pops concerts, including a Rock ‘n’ Roll and Star Wars concert.

“Live music is one of the greatest joys of life. As a musician and executive director, it is important to me that the timeless genre of classical music be accessible and available to everyone,” says Lansdowne. “The San Luis Obispo Symphony and Youth Symphony are cultural gems for the community and region. I am looking forward to working with the board of directors, new music director, staff and volunteers to bring diverse, engaging and exciting concerts to the community.”

Symphony Staff


Jenny Beddy
Office Manager

Kristen Hintz
Marketing and Communications Manager

Artistic Operations

Richard Dobeck
Orchestra and Operations Manager


Leslie A. McKinley
Director of Resource Development

Music Education

Abraham Perez
Music Education Director

Dylan Lyman
Education and Administrative Assistant