copyright 2000
Cleveland Chapter
American Guild of Organists

Dean's Message January 2001

One of the nice things about the AGO is the accessibility of its National leadership. I have known Maggie Kemper since my days in Canton when she was Councillor for Region V. Whenever I have met her since, whether as National President or beyond, she has always been gracious and friendly. We are fortunate that she is coming to Cleveland in January, under the sponsorship of the Cleveland Museum of Art for an organ recital on January 7 and will spend some time speaking with us on Monday, January 8. In addition to hearing of her perspective on being President of the National AGO, I am interested in hearing about the program she leads at Northwestern University: Educating the Organist for the 21st Century.

When I had the opportunity to talk with James Thomashower, the National Executive Director of the AGO, at a conference a while back, he expressed his interest in coming to Cleveland to visit with the Chapter membership. I thought that the occasion of the opening of the Severance organ would be the ideal opportunity for his visit. Everything has worked out and so he will be with us at the Severance organ crawl on January 21st. I hope to see many of you at this event and the reception at Epworth-Euclid United Methodist Church which will proceed it. Many thanks are owed to Carol Neff for her perseverance and diplomatic skill in arranging this event.

If you haven't made a resolution for the New Year, may I suggest one? Resolve to take a look at the contract you have with your church. Plan to update if needed. If you don't have one, resolve to obtain one. There are sample contracts in our own Professional Compensation handbook which is downloadable from our web site: The National AGO web site,, also has sample contracts. This important document not only protects you; it clarifies your relationship with the church and benefits them as well.

Happy New Year!

top of page