Current Board Members
Todd Arant - President - Apex, NC
Elizabeth Shepley - President-Elect -St. Paul, MN
John Sutton - Immediate Past President - Altadena, CA
Beth Drake - Secretary-Treasurer - La Crescenta, CA
Stephanie McIlwain Miller - Past President - Bellevue, WA
Anton Armstrong - Northfield, MN
Tim Sharp - Hickory Point, TN
Eric Posada - Board Member - San Angelo, TX
Dawn Jantsch - Executive Director - Dallas, TX
Todd Arant serves as the Director of Traditional Worship Arts at Apex United Methodist Church in Apex, NC, where he oversees a vibrant worship arts ministry including vocal and instrumental choirs for adults, youth, and children. He directs the Chancel Choir (adults), Youth Choir (6th-12th grade), and Children’s Choir (2nd-5th grade) in weekly rehearsals and worship services. He also leads the advanced adult handbell choir and oversees a number of wonderful volunteer directors for adults, youth, and children.
Todd holds the Bachelor of Music Degree in Church Music from Furman University, the Master of Music Degree in Choral Conducting from Emory University, and The Doctor of Worship Studies from The Institute for Worship Studies. Todd is a proud graduate of the Choristers Guild Institute where he earned his certification as a director of young singers. In addition to being an active member of Choristers Guild, Todd also holds memberships in The Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts and the Handbell Musicians of America.
Todd is married to Allison and a proud father of three children: Clarkson, Anna Rast, and Sims.
Elizabeth Shepley enjoyed 16 years as a conductor, teacher, and artistic director of the Northfield Youth Choirs, and 26 years as director of children’s and youth music at the House of Hope Presbyterian Church Choir School in St. Paul and at Bethel Lutheran Church in Northfield. Elizabeth holds a MA in Music Education with a Kodály emphasis (University of St. Thomas), a BA in Music Education (Concordia College, Moorhead, MN), and certifications in both Kodály and Orff-Schulwerk. Further music study has taken her to the Institut Jaques-Dalcroze in Switzerland, the Orff Institute in Austria, The Kodály Institute in Hungary, and the Royal School of Church Music in England. She has taught music education in public and private schools. Elizabeth has chaired inner city music programs in Minneapolis and St. Paul, has served as President of the Twin Cities Chapter of Choristers Guild, as a board member of MN-ACDA and as adjunct professor at Luther Seminary. She has led conferences and festival choirs nationwide, and choirs under her direction have performed across the United States, Canada and Europe. Elizabeth loves to bike, cook, read, golf & travel, and together with her husband, Bob, enjoys keeping up with her four adult sons.
John Sutton took over as president of the Choristers Guild in November of 2021 and is a highly active leader in the choral arts. He is a full Professor in the School of Music at Azusa Pacific University (APU), located 30 minutes from downtown Los Angeles, where he conducts the University Choir, the APU Choral Scholars, and serves as the Director of Choral Activities. In addition, Dr. Sutton is the Artistic Director of the Angeles Chorale; Conductor of Choral Ministries at Lake Avenue Church in Pasadena, California; and Musical Director and Conductor for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s annual Christmas Holiday Sing-a-Long. His work in the L.A. scene has included conducting on stage with Barbara Streisand and Julie Andrews, and he continues to work actively in the Hollywood Studios, conducting music heard on television and movie theater campaigns for the Spider Man and Harry Potter movie series, among others.
Dr. Sutton is a member of the Cherokee Nation. He holds degrees in music from Northwest College, San Jose State University and UCLA, and keeps a busy schedule as workshop leader, choral clinician, and adjudicator in the areas of choral music, and worship leadership. His wife, Cecilia Patino-Sutton, MD, PhD is Associate Professor of Clinical Preventive Medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of USC.
Beth Drake was born and raised in Amarillo, Texas, where she began singing in the Polk Street Methodist Church choral program as a kindergartner. The church used Choristers Guild curriculum, so Beth is very familiar with Choristers Guild. She continued to sing in church and school choirs and was honored to sing in the prestigious Texas All-State choir her senior year of high school. Beth earned her Bachelor of Music, Master of Music Education, and Master of Science in Accounting degrees at the University of North Texas in Denton.
During the past 30+ years, Beth has worked as a CPA in the Los Angeles, CA, area in Big Eight and Big Four accounting firms as an external auditor; publicly held global entertainment and broadcasting companies as an internal auditor and controller; and various non-profits as a CFO. She has served in many leadership roles at her Pasadena, CA, church in finance, choir, marriage ministries, all-church events, and Sunday School.
Beth feels blessed to sing in the Lake Avenue Choir where she serves as the soprano section leader. Randy, her husband of forty plus years, is a world-class, Grammy-nominated drummer who earned his PhD in Ethnomusicology from UC Santa Barbara. He continues to freelance and is an adjunct professor at several Los Angeles area community colleges. Their son, Austin, a graduate of California State University, Northridge, is a professional free-lance trumpeter in the Los Angeles area, including various gigs at Disneyland. Their daughter, Carrie, is living the good life in San Diego continuing to work at Trader Joe’s after earning her psychology degree from UC Santa Barbara. She loves the beach!
Beth and Randy live in the foothills of La Crescenta with their two cats, Ajax and Cleo.
Stephanie McIlwain Miller was president of the Choristers Guild from November of 2019 - November 2021. She joined the Choristers Guild Board of Directors in November 2014. Her first contact with Choristers Guild was as a child in the St. Cecelia Girls’ Choir of the First United Methodist Church in South Charleston, West Virginia. She still treasures her award pin and her introduction to music as a ministry.
Stephanie’s passion is for incorporating the arts in teaching young people as an impetus for their faith formation and an introduction to service in the church, the community, and the world. She has been directing choirs for children and youth since 1985, and has founded or revitalized programs in Washington, Illinois, and Indiana. Previous posts include Director of Music at Grace United Methodist Church, Lafayette, Indiana, Music Teacher at Holy Family Parish School, Kirkland, Washington, and Director of Children’s Ministries at Lake Washington United Methodist Church, Kirkland Washington. She is currently the Director of Youth and Children’s Music and the Arts for Kent United Methodist Church, Kent, Washington.
Her master’s degree in speech-language pathology from Ohio University and work in that field have provided her with expertise and extensive experience working with individuals of varying developmental levels and special needs. She is also an actress and theatre director. Skills in these areas translate to meeting each person where they are developmentally and sharing creativity-developing and fun-filled activities which also broaden the range of arts offerings in worship.
Stephanie is a longtime member of the Choristers Guild and completed the training program in Choristers Guild Children's Choir Leadership. She is also a member of the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts.
Stephanie is married to Kevin McIlwain Miller, her accompanist extraordinaire and Director of Technical Program Management at Google. Their daughter, Kathryn Grace, is a secondary school English Language Arts teacher. She is married to Ray; they met in the children’s choir that Stephanie was directing. Their son, Brendan, is a toddler who loves to sing and dance.
Anton Armstrong, Conductor of the St. Olaf Choir, is the longest tenured conductor in that ensemble’s storied 111 year history. He is the Tosdal Professor of Music at St. Olaf College, becoming the fourth conductor of the St. Olaf Choir in 1990 after ten years in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he served on the faculty of Calvin University and led the Calvin Alumni Choir, the Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus and the St. Cecilia Youth Chorale. He is a graduate of St. Olaf College and earned advanced degrees at the University of Illinois (MM) and Michigan State University (DMA). He is editor of a multicultural choral series for Earthsongs Publications and co-editor (with John Ferguson) of the revised St. Olaf Choral Series for Augsburg Fortress Publishers. In June 1998, he began his tenure as founding conductor of the Oregon Bach Festival Stangeland Family Youth Choral Academy. Dr. Armstrong currently serves as Chair of the National Board of Chorus America.
Dr. Armstrong has frequently conducted ensembles and appeared before regional, national and international gatherings of the American Choral Directors Association, International Federation of Choral Music, National Association for Music Education, Choristers Guild, American Guild of Organists, Association of Lutheran Church Musicians, Organization of American Kodaly Educators and the Orff-Schulwerk Association. In recent years he has guest conducted such noted ensembles as theTabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square, the Utah Symphony and Symphony Chorus, the Utah Voices and Salt Lake City Symphony, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Westminster Choir, the American Boychoir, The Houston Chamber Choir, The Vocal Arts Ensemble of Cincinnati and The Phoenix Chorale. He has also collaborated in concert with Bobby McFerrin and Garrison Keillor.
Since 1990, Dr. Armstrong has served as Artistic Director of the St. Olaf Christmas Festival which features nearly 600 student musicians who are members of five St. Olaf Choral ensembles and the St. Olaf Orchestra.The St. Olaf Christmas Festival, established in 1912 by F. Melius Christiansen (founder of the St. Olaf College Music Department), is one of the oldest musical celebrations of Christmas in the United States
In January 2006, Baylor University selected Anton Armstrong from a field of 118 distinguished nominees to receive the Robert Foster Cherry Award for Great Teaching. He spent February-June 2007 in residency at Baylor University as a visiting professor. In March 2007 Anton Armstrong was the first recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award from the American Boychoir School and in October 2009 he received The Distinguished Alumni Award from Michigan State University. In June 2013 Dr. Armstrong received the Saltzman Award from the Oregon Bach Festival. The festival’s highest honor, the Saltzman Award is bestowed upon individuals who have provided exceptional levels of leadership to the organization. In the Fall of 2014, The St. Olaf Choir and Dr. Armstrong received a Regional Emmy for the PBS television program Christmas in Norway with The St. Olaf Choir. In 2021, Anton Armstrong was named an Honorary Life Member of the National Collegiate Choral Organization. Honorary Life Members are recognized as members of the choral profession who have devoted their life to the enhancement and artistic growth of the choral art. The award recognizes those leaders in the choral profession who have mentored young conductors, inspired singers, supported music educators in the arts, and shared their talents and gifts in the United States and abroad.
Tim Sharp (BM, MCM, DMA) has varied his career as conductor, university professor, publisher, and arts administrator and innovator. As Artistic and Executive Director of the Tulsa Chorale, Tulsa (OK), Tim enjoys programming relevant concerts that have become a staple of the artistic classical music landscape throughout the region. He is the Director of Innovation for Trevecca University’s (Nashville, TN) Center for Community Arts Innovation, and Director of Music at Immanuel Baptist Church (Nashville, TN).
Tim’s research and writing focuses pedagogically in conducting and score analysis, and his many published essays and books betray his eclectic interests in regional music history, acoustics, creativity, innovation, and aesthetics. He has conducted university, community, church, and children’s choirs, and performs as choral conductor and clinician in the United States and internationally.
Dr. Sharp is a Life Fellow of Clare Hall, Cambridge University, with degrees in music and conducting from The School of Church Music of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Belmont University, and Bluefield College.
Tim has just concluded thirteen years as Executive Director of the American Choral Directors Association, the national professional association for choral conductors, educators, scholars, students, and choral music industry representatives in the United States. He continues to represent choral activity in the USA to the International Federation for Choral Music and is Vice-President of Musica International, the world’s largest database of choral music. Prior to his leadership of ACDA, Sharp was Dean of Fine Arts at Rhodes College, and earlier, Director of Choral Activities at Belmont University.
Sacred Choral Music Repertoire: Insights for Conductors is Tim’s latest book for choral conductors. Other publications in choral conducting are Relevance in the Choral Art, Innovation in the Ensemble Arts: Sustaining Creativity, Mentoring in the Ensemble Arts: Helping Others Find Their Voice and Collaboration in the Ensemble Arts: Working and Playing Well with Others.
Tim and his wife Jane live on a working farm in Hickory Point, TN.
Eric Posada is a vibrant and diverse conductor, choral educator, and mentor that is passionate about uniting human beings and singers across the world through profound, transformative choral experiences and performances. In August 2021, Dr. Posada was appointed Director of Choral Activities at Angelo State University in Texas. Previously, he held academic appointments at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, Tyler Junior College, Texas A&M University, and Texas Tech University. A native of McAllen, Texas, Posada founded the Rio Grande Valley’s first professional chorus, Pasión, and is the ensemble’s Artistic Director.
Since 2020, Dr. Posada has presented interest sessions for twenty-eight national, regional, or state music conferences. These invitations have included the National Collegiate Choral Organization; Southwestern American Choral Directors Association; Northwestern Choral Directors Association; The College Music Society; National Association of Teachers of Singing; Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia; seventeen state Music Educators Associations; four state Choral Directors Associations; and the Texas Orchestra Directors Association. In addition to his work in academia, Dr. Posada has served seventeen years as a Director of Music in liturgical settings, the highlight of which was a performance at Notre-Dame de Paris. Additionally, Posada has held conducting posts with civic choruses such as the East Texas Symphony Chorus, Brazos Valley Chorale, The Lubbock Chorale, and his newly founded San Angelo Chorus. A champion of philanthropic work, Dr. Posada’s non-profit organization Pasión provides the highest artistic product and administers to the counties of South Texas. The professional chorus recently won third place in The American Prize for two categories, Choral Performance and the Performance of American Music, and was selected through refereed audition as Performing Choir for the 2021 Texas Choral Directors Association Summer Conference.
Throughout his career, Dr. Posada has been honored and privileged to collaborate with esteemed colleagues and ensembles across the world. Forthcoming for Posada in 2024, is a Carnegie Hall performance of Ola Gjeilo’s Sunrise Mass with Manhattan Concert Productions. Recently, Dr. Posada and Pasión worked with composers Dominick DiOrio, Dan Forrest, Kyle Pederson, and Mari Esabel Valverde to offer the program Light Beyond Shadow to the Texas Choral Directors Association. In 2017, the ensemble performed the Concert World Premiere of and recorded composer Michael John Trotta’s Light Shines in the Darkness. At Angelo State, Posada has fostered the engagement of guest artists and scholars to enrich the learning of his musicians through summer conducting symposiums featuring composers Victor Johnson, Mari Esabel Valverde, Marques L. A. Garrett, and Christi Jones; roundtables with composers Kyle Pederson and James Knox; and the World Premiere of Carlos Alberto Cordero Garcia’s Escucha Tu Voz and Knox’s Personent Hodie. While at UNCC, the choral department hosted sessions with Stacey V. Gibbs, Tim Sarsany, and Craig Courtney. Dr. Posada’s students at Tyler Junior College had the opportunity to perform under the direction of two-time GRAMMY award winner Craig Hella Johnson and GRAMMY award nominee Eugene Rogers. During his tenure at Texas A&M University, Posada’s choruses performed at Carnegie Hall and toured across Germany and Canada. Noteworthy partnerships during that time included projects with the internationally acclaimed Nordic Choir and composers Ola Gjeilo and Shawn Kirchner, as well as the World Premiere of Michael John Trotta’s Tu Sola Remedio.
Postdoctoral work for Dr. Posada has included study with GRAMMY award winner Jerry Blackstone and Dan Bara. He earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in choral conducting from Texas Tech University in 2015 and served as graduate assistant under the tutelage of Richard Bjella. Prior to his doctoral studies, Posada was a graduate assistant of Allen Hightower and completed his Master of Music degree in choral conducting at Sam Houston State University. In 2003, Dr. Posada received his Bachelor of Music degree with concentration in Teacher Preparation, also from Texas Tech, at which his conducting teachers were John Dickson, Pamela Elrod, and Gary Lewis.
Dawn Jantsch has served as executive director of Choristers Guild since 2017, dedicated to enabling leaders to nurture the musical and spiritual growth of children, youth, and adults. The organization, with over 27,000 supporters, publishes educational materials for choral leaders, as well as beautiful music for sacred, school, and festival settings.
An active public speaker, media contact, and business advocate, Jantsch represented businesses and causes at city, county, state, and international levels. She was also appointed to a number of civic and government committees by elected officials from both parties in several cities and counties. A long-time chorister in four different cities, Dawn has sung Rutter's Gloria, Faure’s Requiem, Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Mendelssohn's Elijah, and most recently, Orff's Carmina Burana. And, she has been singing Choristers Guild music since she was in her church choir in high school.
She currently volunteers at AARP as an advocate. She lives in Dallas with her husband Ted with a poodle and a Maltese, two of 39 dogs she has fostered.
Past Executive Directors
Past Board Members
Sandra (Sandy) Rosales
Dr. Anton E Armstrong (Past President)
Dr. Madeline S Bridges (Past President)
Mrs. Judy A Britts (Past President)
Mr. Bradley Ellingboe
Ms. Judith Ervin
Dr. John Allen Ferguson
Mrs. Lynda Fray
Mr. Terry Goolsby
Dr. Joe Grubbs
Dr. C Michael Hawn (Past President)
Mr. David Hein (Past President)
Dr. Michael Jothen
Dr. Sharon "Sherrie" Lawhon
Mr. Jim Miller
Mr. Lee E Northcutt
Mr. Oscar Page
Dr. Evelyn L Parker
Mrs. Rebecca Thompson
Dr. Heather Potter (Past President)
Teri Larson (Past President)
Mr. Bennett Porchiran
Mrs. Sara L Powell
Rev. Joann Saylors
Dr. Pearl Shangkuan
Rev. Beth Brown Shugart (Past President)
Dr. John D Whitvliet (Past President)
Dr. Betty Bedsole (Past President)
Dr. Michael Jothen (Past President)
Dr. Larry K Ball (Past President)
Mr. John D Horman (Past President)
Dr. Randall D Engle (Past President)
Mrs. Helenclair Lowe (Past President)
Mr. A Leonard Lilyers (Past President)
Mr. John T Burke (Past President)