Associate Board

The Merit Associates are a group of Chicago-area professionals committed to supporting Merit School of Music and its mission of providing high-quality music education to students in metropolitan Chicago. The Merit Associates strive to develop themselves as model philanthropic leaders and next-generation advocates for the musical arts. Their primary goal is to work together to develop new resources for and to increase public awareness of Merit’s music education programs and services.

The Associates also sponsor an annual fundraising event in the fall that helps support Merit School of Music’s music education programs and helps keep the cost of programming affordable for all Chicago families.


Michael Andrews
Reynolds Consumer Products

Vice Chair
Emily Schmitt
Smith Bucklin

By-laws Chair
Andrew Scroggins
Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Finance Chair
Jake Schnur
Fifth Third Bank

Fundraising Chair
Tyler Groharing
William Blair

Member Relations Chair
John Kalil

School Relations
Gabrielle Klein
Spencer Stuart



Lucile Agaisse
Thea Research

Alexandra Armada
Rush University Medical Center

John Boryk
PNC Bank

Lori Bravi
Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

Luis Catalan

Ryan Chambers
NAI Hiffman

Elizabeth Crowell

Tucker Deeter
Wenk Aviation Insurance, LLC

Jamal Elam
Encore Event Technologies

Allison Fox
Charles River Associates

Jacob Gehl
Ronald McDonald House Charities

Matthew Hanna
Trinity Industries

Damian Joseph
SW10 Creative

Deborah Liner

Terrance McKinneyᴬ

Pamela Meadowsᴬ
University of Illinois at Chicago

Emily Meier
Deloitte & Touche LLP

Christine Nelson
Deloitte & Touche, LLP

John Oppenheimer
RedNoFive & Hydrate Nightclubs

LeRoy Ousley, Jr.
Royal Bank of Scotland

Nishad Parmar
Xylem Inc./Yourtech

Elizabeth Polit
Nora & Partners, LLP

Geoff Rothman

Annette Sayre
West Monroe Partners

Adam Shafer
Museum of Contemporary Art

Joshua Sultan
Nora & Partners, LLP

Cathleen Wloch
Davis Bancorp

Matt Wloch
JPMorgan Chase



Tammy Adams

Mary Pat Kohberger
Deloitte & Touche LLP

Cathleen Marine

Rachel Pawlisz
Kaplan Higher Education

Colleen Walter

James Walter
Northwestern Memorial Hospital


ᴬ Merit Alum

Steven, viola

"My dream is to be a professional violist, and Merit is helping me to reach this goal with quality training and excellent performance opportunities."

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