Artistic Staff, Board & Advisory Council

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Artistic Staff
Maestro Colin Clarke – Music Director and Principal Conductor

2017-18 Board of Directors


Carol Kehoe Chair

Carol Kehoe is an accomplished leader with more than 25 years of management experience at senior levels. A life-long learner, with a strong creative, artistic nature, Carol can operationalize abstract ideas with a proven track record of improving performance, increasing revenues, reducing operating expenses, streamlining workflow and creating an effective team environment.

She has demonstrated experience in relationship management across the public and private sector, having held senior marketing and development positions in several professional arts organizations, most recently as the Executive Director of the HamiltonPhilharmonic Orchestra. More than 15 years in the media sector culminated in her role as Director of Marketing for the London Free Press before she turned to a consulting practice offering strategic and communications planning. She spent eight years as an instructor in the Arts Management Diploma Program at Western University, and has volunteered for many public and non-profit organizations including the Hamilton Arts Council, Museum London, the London Arts Council, the Creative City Task Force, City of London, and the Music Strategy Task Force, City of Hamilton. She has bachelor of education and master of arts in journalism degrees from Western University. Carol is the 2016 recipient of Work in Culture’s Robert Johnston Award, presented to an individual who has demonstrated strength in nurturing and supporting people through their careers. This award is for artists and arts administrators who have contributed a minimum of five years of professional service to the arts and cultural disciplines. Carol brings a wealth of knowledge as an arts administrator in the public sector, as well as many years of experience in fundraising and community partnership development.


Matteo Patricelli – Vice Chair

Matteo Patricelli is the Executive Director of the Flamborough Chamber of Commerce, as well as Principal of his own Strategy Consulting Company and has extensive experience in strategic consultation, government and business relations, and community development, both in the volunteer and non-profit sectors, as well as in the for-profit sector.

From his late teens through his 20s, Matteo has been involved in the community. Today, he works with various community organizations and government staff. Is is a recipient of the "40 under 40" Award, as well as the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Matteo has strong links with Hamilton's leaders in government, community organizations and the private sector through various organizations and projects. He has focused on making Hamilton the greatest city it can be, and a strong youth orchestra is part of that vision.


Susan Birnie – Treasurer

Susan Birnie is the Executive Director of Education Services for the Faculty of Health Sciences at McMaster University, where she oversees a complex department of student programs and resources to those programs. She has 38 years of experience in administration at McMaster University, including strategic management, financial oversight of a $42m operation, and human resources management of 200 permanent staff and more than 1,000 part-time casual staff.

Susan gained governance experience as a member of the Board of Governors of McMaster University, as well as having experience on national and provincial boards associated with Girl Guides of Canada. Susan is currently Provincial Commissioner (lead volunteer) for Ontario and Nunavut. She recently won the Governor General's award for her volunteerism with Girl Guides. She brings a wealth of experience as a volunteer with youth organizations, as well as financial expertise.

Ann Thompson – Secretary

Ann Thompson has been a Data Manager/Research Coordinator at the Offord Centre for Child Studies at McMaster University for 23 years. She manages the databases for two internationally renowned multi-site research projects studying Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Ann has been a parent member of the HPYO for the past five years. Her two children have been involved in both the Concert and the Philharmonic Orchestras. She has volunteered at every concert and fundraising event. As she can attend every rehearsal, she is able to communicate with parents, musicians and the Music Director on a regular basis.

Ann brings expertise in the design, construction and programming of databases and spreadsheets, which can be used to organize the music library, membership and alumni information, fundraising ventures, fees and donations.


Dr. Patricia McNiven – Director

Patricia McNiven has been a parent member of the HPYO for over six years. She has extensive governance experience as an elected board member of the McMaster University Board of Governors, as well as sitting as President of the Canadian Association of Midwifery Educators. She was also a member of the Senate at McMaster University for three years, where she has been an Associate Professor since 1993. In addition to her university appointment, Patricia has an active midwifery practice and is the Editor-in-Chief of the Canadian Journal of Midwifery Research and Practice. Patricia has three children and five grandchildren, and has been involved with numerous youth organizations and activities.

Patricia brings skills in financial and personnel management of non-profit organizations. She is an experienced grant writer and her experience with multiple youth orchestras furnishes her with insight into strategies for management and community engagement.


Marie Peebles – Director

Marie Peebles is a violist, music teacher, conductor and musicians’ health advocate. She began her violin studies at the age of 5 with Dr. Charles Biondo at the University Of Notre Dame (Indiana). At age 15, she was awarded a full scholarship to study viola at Interlochen Arts Academy (Michigan). She received a B.M. and a Performer’s Certificate from Indiana University, where she studied with William Primrose. In 1971, Marie became principal violist of the Orquesta Sinfonica Nacional of Costa Rica, and a founding violin teacher of the Orquesta Sinfonica Juvenil. From 1974-76, she was an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Notre Dame, (violin/viola performance, chamber music, orchestra, introduction to music). In 1976, Marie moved to Hamilton as a violist in the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra. She had close ties to Glenn Mallory (HPYO founder) and the HPYO as a colleague and coach. Indeed, she has had students in every HPYO since arriving in Hamilton in 1976 (over 40 years).

Marie co-founded the Musicians’ Clinic of Canada in 1987 with Dr. John Chong, which earned her a Woman of the Year award. After 25 years in the HPO, she continued her playing career with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, where she also worked as an assistant in the TSO music library, preparing the music for the musicians. She retired from playing in 2015, but maintains an active teaching studio of 34 students.

Marie brings her educational and orchestral experience, as well as skills as a music librarian and musicians’ health advocate, to the HPYO to enhance the experience of the young musicians and to support the Music Director.


Sara Moody Veldhuis – Director

Originally from Hamilton, Ontario, Sara Moody Veldhuis has been involved with many Arts organizations, in multiple roles, throughout her life. She began her musical studies on piano at the Hamilton Conservatory of Music, which led to lessons on violin and cello in the Hamilton Board of Education Strings programme. At the age of 12, she took up the trombone and joined the HPYO, under the baton and guidance of Glenn Mallory, and her experience with the HPYO played a pivotal role in her musical upbringing, helping her to prepare for her studies at the University of Toronto Faculty of Music.  

While at University, Sara held the position of Orchestra Manager for the Hamilton Summer Youth Orchestra, under the governance of Glenn Mallory and the HPYO. She also spent two summers as Production Stage Manager at the Festival of the Sound in Parry Sound, and for her last two years of university, she also held the position of General Manager of the Oakville Symphony Orchestra.  Upon graduating from U of T with a Bachelor of Music in Education, Sara was awarded a Canada Council grant to work for General Arts Management in Toronto, which led to her being hired as Director of Artistic Administration & Operations at the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra.  In 1998, Sara graduated from The University of Western Ontario with a Bachelor of Education degree, and she has been teaching music in the high school system ever since.  She is currently Artistic Director of the Lynn River Music & Arts Festival in Simcoe, ON, and was honoured to serve as a Classical Music Judge for the 2016 JUNO Awards.  

Sara is passionate about upholding the legacy of Glenn Mallory, which she is proud to do alongside her husband, Wayne, whom she met in the HPYO all those years ago!

Community Advisory Council

Ms. Judith Bishop
Former five time Chair of the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board, long time community activist, and currently a member of Hamilton’s Roundtable on Poverty.

Ms. Ashley Dent
HPYO alumni and Vice-President & General Counsel at LifeLabs Medical Laboratory Services.

Ms. Valerie Tryon
Internationally celebrated concert pianist.