Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.

As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.

The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.

Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit www.afm.org/join.

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Home » Officer Columns » Executive Board Members » I Am Proud to Join the International Executive Board


I Am Proud to Join the International Executive Board

  -  International Executive Board Member and President of Local 10-208 (Chicago, IL)

What a surprise getting the word from President Hair that I was being considered to fill a vacancy on the International Executive Board. It is an honor to accept the appointment, and I promise to serve the membership to the best of my ability.
I have been an active AFM member since 1975, when I began my journey from a violinist/violist working as a freelance player in Chicagoland to my current position as president and first woman officer of the Chicago Federation of Musicians (CFM).
I started my career in the labor movement as a board member of the CFM, which lasted for nine years, where I had the distinct honor of working with CFM President Ed Ward and Vice President Tom Beranek. During this time, I represented our city in the grassroots beginning of the Theater Musicians Association where officers and musicians came together to address issues in our theaters. I served as the secretary-treasurer of the organization from 1997-2001.
Moving from the CFM board to vice president in 2004, I participated in negotiating collective bargaining agreements for the local along with our president, Gary Matts. We worked closely with the player’s committees to hear their needs and bargain for positive wage increases and working conditions. I also was successful in organizing many small theaters and ensembles.
In 2016, I was elected by acclamation as the first woman president of the Chicago Federation of Musicians. I now sit behind the original desk of our great labor leader James Petrillo, which gives me inspiration every day.
I believe in creating strong relationships within our political community. As a local officer, I serve as a vice president representing the musicians on the executive board of the Illinois AFL-CIO, a position I have held since 2004. I sit on the finance committee of the Chicago Federation of Labor and have held all offices of the Chicago Entertainment Industry Labor Council. Recently, I was invited to serve on the transition team of our new mayor, Lori Lightfoot, where arts leaders across the city had the opportunity to give input into the future activities of the arts and cultural community in Chicago.
As president of the Chicago Federation of Musicians, I led two of the longest strikes for both the Lyric Opera Orchestra and the Chicago Symphony. The issues of each group were vastly different, however, by collective action, we were able to make significant gains that might not have been reached without a job action.
I believe in working together, listening to every voice, and finding solutions to the issues at hand. Please let me know if I can give you help along the way.







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