Candidates for the 2017 Alumni Board Election

Below are the statements from the candidates running for seats on the Alumni Board in the 2017 election. All Network members will receive a link to vote online via SurveyMonkey. Voting will remain open until Friday, July 14 at 11:59 pm Eastern time.


Kenneth Hammond '12

When I was in Pops from 2008-2012, I played trombone, served as Publicity Chair and Co-President, and undertook special projects such as procuring a theremin for a performance of The Spellbound Concerto and channeling my inner sports announcer for a rendition of PDQ Bach. More recently, as one of the founding members of the Alumni Network, I led the effort to gain recognition as a Shared Interest Group from the Harvard Alumni Association in 2015. As Vice President, I managed the Network’s website, helped organize the Alumni Reunion Concert earlier this year, and contributed to the campaign to increase Allen’s salary.
I hope to continue serving as an Alumni Board member to give back to an orchestra that has given much to me. My goals include building ties with the Orchestra and solidifying the network as an institution that can serve the Pops for years to come.

Jeffrey Iuliano '13

As a member, librarian, and ultimately co-president, I felt the Pops played a deeply positive and prominent role in my life as an undergraduate. I know many others share this perspective; the orchestra provides a unique creative experience and strong community, of which the Alumni are a key component. I hope the new Alumni Board will strengthen the Alumni Network, be a resource for the current orchestra, and further the Pops’ long-term goals – for example, by fundraising to grow the endowment. I would be excited to participate in this endeavor! Currently, I am pursuing a PhD in Astrophysics; remaining in a University environment, and having spent the last two years gaining experience as the president of my department's graduate student organization, I am well situated to be an effective advocate for the Pops.

Mary Ellen Stebbins '08

My name is Mary Ellen Stebbins and I would be honored to serve on the Pops Alumni Board.
I was a proud member of the second violin section from 2004-2008, during which time I served as President of the group and Special Projects Chair. As Special Projects Chair I coordinated the fundraising effort that lead to the establishment of the Pops endowment.
As a Member at Large on the Alumni Board for the last two years I have focused on growing alumni connection through participation in Pops events and gift giving. This past year I helped to coordinate the Alumni Concert and spearheaded the Alumni Fundraising Drive to contribute to the endowment With fellow alums I have also worked to increase Allen’s salary—creating a petition to the OFA on his behalf signed by members of the network and the current orchestra.
I would love to continue to serve the Pops as a member of the Alumni Board for the next term. I look forward to forging a deeper connection between alumni and undergraduates and strengthening alumni support through continued fundraising and promotion of Pops events!

Perry Tsai '07

My name is Perry Tsai, and I hope to serve on the Harvard Pops Orchestra Alumni Board. When I was in Pops 2003-2007, I held leadership positions as concertmaster and as treasurer. I remember those times fondly: Pops brought together for me music and creativity and camaraderie in ways I could not find anywhere else. I am currently a medical student at UNC Chapel Hill, starting my President-Elect year and fourth year on the board of the American Medical Student Association. I look forward to dedicating my energy to the growth and development of Pops for the next generation.

Elizabeth Weinbloom '07

I'm Elizabeth Weinbloom '07 and I'd love to serve on the Pops Alumni Board! I was co-president and primary script-writing person during my time, a period in Pops history which included such Pops milestones as the introduction of fully scripted narrative concerts, the first pineapple smashing, the opening of the endowment, and Pops' first (and still only?) CD recording and radio broadcast. I also scripted Pops' 10th anniversary concert, our first (and still only?) full concert in Sanders.
I haven't been very involved as an alumna yet, but the 20th anniversary concert this year was such a great experience and the undergrad leaders were such rockstars that they inspired me to start doing more to support them and all their incredible work. Guys, the undergrads are so cool. I don't think we were that cool.
I think the role of the alumni board should be to support the undergraduate leadership via fundraising, maintaining community, encouraging alumni attendance at concerts, advocating for the orchestra / Allen at the university level, and serving as a source of institutional memory and (solicited) advice. Some potential ideas for alumni board activities include doing some matchmaking between undergrads and alumni for mentorship / networking (if the Lampoon can funnel people to The Simpsons, then so can we, as soon as one of you gets hired by The Simpsons), and establishing a centralized and accessible archive of old scripts, films, and programs so that we can indulge our nostalgia and so the students can steal our jokes.
In my grown-up life I am part of a living-room musical theater company and this one time I wrote an Animaniacs burlesque show, so the Pops spirit very much lives on in my post-collegiate artistic pursuits. Oh, and I play the cello!

Michele Zemplenyi '13

Hello Pops alumni! I had the pleasure of playing cello in the Pops from 2010-2013. The “Pops Gets Gangster” and “Pops Comes of Age” posters that proudly adorn my bedroom wall are a happy reminder of the thrilling music, pun-filled scripts, and wacky dance routines that made my time in the Pops a highlight of my undergraduate years. I come from a long line of Popsies, namely my older sister and violinist Karen, and as a member of the alumni board, I would make it my mission to ensure that the Pops and our unparalleled leader, Allen, have the funding and alumni support necessary to continue enriching the lives of undergraduates and alumni alike for years to come.