The Women’s Board is a group of dynamic women leaders who are passionate about the Orchestra and its mission, with a focus on producing fundraising events and activities to benefit the CSO.

The Women’s Board meets six times a year to conduct board business and enjoy music and education programs. The Women’s Board fundraising activities include the CSO’s annual Symphony Ball, formerly known as the Opening Night Gala as well as its annual winter event entitled REMIX. Membership is via a nomination process.

Symphony Ball

For 125 seasons, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and its preeminent artistic leadership have drawn the world’s greatest artists to Orchestra hall to perform alongside the incomparable musicians of the CSO and under the baton of world-renowned conductors.

In celebration of the 125th Anniversary Season of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, co-chairs Shelley Ochab and Raj Fernando, together with the Women’s Board, cordially invite you to a weekend of extraordinary music, festivities and experiences on Friday, September 18 and Saturday, September 19.

On Friday, September 18th, Riccardo Muti and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra will perform a Concert for Chicago at the Jay Pritzker Paviion at Millennium Park. Patrons who purchase Platinum and Gold packages for the weekend will receive priority, reserved seating and amenities for the concert and a Victorian picnic themed party at the Harris Theater rooftop immediately following the concert.

On September 19th, Symphony Ball, a prestigious gala evening of music and celebration that features a pre-concert reception at Symphony Center, followed by Riccardo Muti leading the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in Mussorgsky’s popular Pictures from an Exhibition. Gala patrons will continue their evening with post-concert dinner at the Palmer House and dancing to Maggie Speaks.

The CSO’s 125th Anniversary Celebration Weekend is one of Chicago’s not-to-be missed events!



The mission of the Women’s Board of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra is to promote the artistic excellence and exemplary education programs of the Orchestra by engaging women leaders in advocacy and fundraising efforts.


Membership requirements

Membership requirements for the Women’s Board include:

 a) Minimum $1,000 contribution to the CSO’s Annual Fund
 b) Annual dues payment of $250
 c) Financial support of fundraising events, including the Symphony Ball and Remix
 d) Concert series subscription
 e) Attend at least two Women’s Board meetings a year


Women’s Board Members

Katie Barber

Immediate Past President
Leslie Henner Burns

Honorary Members
Cristina Mazzavillani Muti
Amy Rule

Dora Aalbregtse
Elisabeth Adams
Sharon Angell
Alison Bonney 
Claudia Woerheide Chakravorty 
Regine Corrado
Suzanne Demirjian 
Judith E. Feldman 
Dr. Diane Fisher 
Elizabeth Foster
Karen E. Goodyear
Kyle Harvey 
Leigh Ann Herman
Laura King
Jennifer Luby 
Romana Malinowski
Pam McGaan
Heather McWilliams
Mimi P. Murley
Shelley Ochab
Elizabeth A. Parker
Sara Pfaff
Sandra Rusnak
Ruthie Ryan
Nancy Santi 
Cynthia Scholl 
Carter Sharfstein
Courtney Shea
Kim Shepherd
Cheryl Sturm
Michelle Tolliver

Advisory Committee
Fran Beatty
Ellen Gignilliat
Gloria Gottlieb