Education Through Music Names Penny Swift as New Chief Operating Officer

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The new COO has been brought in to oversee Education Through Music's program expansion and to increase the program's impact and efficiency.

New Education Through Music COO Penny Swift with ETM students.

I am very excited to help lead Education Through Music’s mission to ensure every child receives music education as part of a comprehensive education.

Education Through Music (ETM) announces the appointment of Penny Swift as Chief Operating Officer effective immediately. The ETM music education program has steadily grown over the last 26 years, doubling in size since 2012. The new position of Chief Operating Officer was created to support the significant growth of the organization. At ETM, she will oversee an projected organizational budget of $6 million and approximately 60 school sites employing 50 teachers and 30 administrative and program staff.

As the new COO, Ms. Swift will continue building organizational capacity both to support the growth to date and support expansion in the future. Ms. Swift’s 19 years of education experience and more recently serving as the Divisional Vice President of the Eastern Division for Brightside Academy, will be instrumental in furthering ETM’s impact and efficiency. In her role, Ms. Swift will report to Executive Director Katherine Damkohler and oversee ETM’s Marketing, Human Resources, Finance, Evaluation and Program operations.

“Education Through Music’s strong model, proven impact, and plan for growth all appeal to my desire to do work that makes a difference in the lives of others,” said Swift. “I am very excited to help lead Education Through Music’s mission to ensure every child receives music education as part of a comprehensive education.”

Ms. Swift has had an extensive career, particularly in low-income neighborhoods and communities, as an operational and strategic leader in early childhood education. Initially, she worked as a teacher and a special education administrator, but over the last decade, she has had progressively more complex leadership roles overseeing early childhood centers. Ms. Swift was Divisional Vice President with Brightside Academy, overseeing all academies in the New York and Philadelphia regions.

A lifelong New Yorker, Ms. Swift’s career in education started at the City College of New York, where she graduated cum laude with a master's degree in special education and a professional diploma in educational administration. Ms. Swift has spent over 15 years working in early childhood education, striving to provide families most in need with unmatched educational opportunities. Ms. Swift is excited to continue working to provide dynamic educational opportunities to children in New York City, where her career began.

“We are thrilled to welcome Penny to Education Through Music, especially at a time of tremendous growth and scaling opportunities for the program,” remarked Damkohler. “Penny’s expertise and leadership are invaluable to the future of our organization."
 
About Education Through Music
The ETM model currently serves nearly 27,000 students in inner-city schools in New York City, and our model reaches another 12,000 children through the work of our licensed affiliate organization in Los Angeles. ETM's comprehensive, sustainable music education network has garnered the support of corporations, public policy makers and foundations, including The Music Man Foundation, CMA Foundation, The Jerome L. Greene Foundation, Ford Foundation and D'Addario Foundation. For more information visit ETMonline.org.

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Tim Lemberger
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