I have spent the last two Saturdays as part of large groups in all-day state board meetings (ACDA Michigan and MSVMA). As I looked around at the amazing, inspiring professionals at these meetings, I wondered: “Why do you serve?”
All of them are already too busy, and could be spending these hours staying on top of their own jobs, volunteering in their local community, or just being with their family. Why do they choose to devote their time in this way?
For me, there are lots of reasons: some selfless, some selfish.
1. I want to help impact as many students as possible. If I can help support quality singing across the state, that’s a big win.
2. I have an agenda. I have served for four years as ACDA’s Michigan Vocal Jazz R&S Chair. As such, I have been able to advocate for vocal jazz in choral programs across the state, and hopefully move the needle at least a little.
3. I want to be around these people. The other people serving on these boards are passionate, inspiring, brilliant educators and conductors. I improve my own work by being around them, watching them work, and interacting with them. I have so much to learn; these are the people I want to learn from.
Why do I serve? It makes the community better, and it makes me better.