Peter Wilson

Peter Wilson, President
Originally from the UK, Peter Wilson has lived in Leonardtown since 2009 with his wife and two sons. He joined the SMYOC board in 2015. Prior to becoming President in June 2017, he was actively involved with website development, marketing, and recruitment. His family discovered SMYOC when they were looking for musical opportunities in the area for one of their sons, who became an orchestra member in January 2015. One season later, the other son signed up too! Peter played piano as a child, as well as guitar, flute and church organ. He also sang in the school choir through high school and in a community all boys choir. He feels strongly that playing in a group is the pinnacle of musical enjoyment, and wants to ensure opportunities like SMYOC are always available to the young people in the community.

Julia Nichols Julia M. Nichols, Founder and Past President (2012 - 2017)
Julia has lived in St. Mary`s County since 1997 and has served on the boards of the MOMS Club of St. Mary`s County (2002-2006) and the Chesapeake Charter School Alliance (2006-2012). She has been dedicated both personally and professionally to improving education and opportunities for children in southern Maryland. Julia has played violin since the age of five. She was a member of the Vermont Youth Orchestra during high school and played with the Gilbert and Sullivan Society at Yale University. She currently teaches Suzuki violin lessons under the direction of the Sarah Brenzo Violin Studios. She has three children who play violin. Julia`s experience in her youth orchestra inspired her to start one in Southern Maryland. She has wonderful memories of her time in orchestra—of the many friendships made, of working together as a team, of performing. Julia hopes to provide the students in our area the same kind of experience.
Lisa Ragen

Lisa Reid Ragen, Secretary
Lisa is an attorney who moved to Calvert County in 2000 with her family. She currently teaches law at the George Washington University School of Law. Lisa`s musical education began early; her father was a jazz pianist and High School Band director. She sang in choir and played piano in her earlier years, then played french horn with various groups up through college. Her younger child, Laura, moved from percussion to bassoon in Middle School. Together they discovered the Southern Maryland Youth Orchestra and Laura has been a member of the Orchestra since 2015 and an Ambassador for the program as well. When her children were in the lower grades, Lisa was an active member of the PTA where she focused on bringing cultural arts activities to the schools her children attended. She has been a Member and Secretary of the SMYOC Board since 2016 and sees in the Southern Maryland Youth Orchestra and Choir the potential to also give young students exposure to the types of cultural and musical experiences that helped shape her interests. She welcomes the opportunity to be involved in providing musical opportunities to young people in Southern Maryland.

Elizabeth Price

Elizabeth Price, Treasurer
Elizabeth Price is a Maryland native and has been living in St Mary’s County since 2002. In addition to looking after her two young sons, she works part time as a research associate at the Chesapeake Biological Lab in Solomons. Liz joined the SMYOC board in 2013, and is currently serving as treasurer. She took piano lessons for years as a child and has great memories of participating in musical productions in high school.  Although it will be a few years before her kids are old enough to audition, getting involved with SMYOC seemed like a great way to ensure musical opportunities are available to kids in the area.

David Kung

Dave Kung, Member
Dave is a Professor of Mathematics at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. Dave started violin at age four and has played in numerous groups including the Madison (WI) Symphony Orchestra and the Chesapeake Chamber Orchestra. He currently serves as concertmaster of the Chamber Orchestra of Southern Maryland, In Concert (COSMIC). Combining his interests in math and music, he recently released a twelve lecture DVD set with the Great Courses series. Dave feels strongly that music has enriched his life, and he wants to make sure others have the same opportunity.

Laura Landreth

Laura Landreth, Member
Laura is a native of Chattanooga, TN and has resided in MD since 2006 with her husband, son and daughter. Laura is very active in her church and works there, part time, as one of the office managers. She has held several leadership roles throughout the church, including deacon, VBS director and Small Group Bible Study facilitator. Laura is the manager of the SMYOC Choir in St. Mary’s County which she especially enjoys because her daughter has been a member of the choir since 2013. Laura feels music should be a long lasting legacy; to have music in our lives for enrichment, solace and just good ‘ole fun! Her daughter’s passion is singing and she enjoys singing with both SMYOC and her school choir. She is also enjoying learning the violin! Laura truly enjoys being a part of this organization, helping to keep the musical standards at their highest within the organization.

Brian Oakey

Brian Oakey, Member
Brian is an Admissions Counselor at St. Mary's College of Maryland. Brian started playing piano and singing at age four and is also an avid clarinet and saxophonist. He spent eleven of his childhood and adolescent years in the Maryland State Boychoir, a community boychoir based in Baltimore. While in the Boychoir, Brian fell in love with performing and sharing the joy of music. Brian is excited to be a part of a youth organization that offers music and life-enrichment skills outside of the classroom.