Carole Keller came to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in April 2000 via the National Arts Center Orchestra in Canada and the Minnesota Orchestra. She began working as an orchestra librarian while pursuing a college degree in cello performance.
Born and raised in Winona, Minnesota, Keller was part of a very musical family. With her two older sisters playing the violin and her older brother playing the viola, it seemed the only logical choice, at age 9, was to begin the cello, completing the family quartet. She went on to St. Olaf College with intentions of majoring in both music and mathematics, which eventually converged toward music. Even her campus work-study program was in music, as the librarian for the orchestra and the chamber orchestra.
After college, Keller moved to the Twin Cities where she inevitably found herself working on staff with the Minnesota Orchestra. It was there that she began her career as a professional orchestra librarian. She stayed with the Minnesota Orchestra for nine years, beginning as a library assistant and eventually becoming Assistant Principal Librarian. In 1997, she accepted the position of Principal Librarian in the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, where she worked until returning to her Midwest roots to join the CSO.