The Board

President: Heidi McIlroy

Heidi McIlroy started her Kodály levels at Seattle Pacific University in 2006 and finished with a Masters of Arts in Music Education with a Kodály emphasis from the University of St. Thomas in 2013. She served as NKE secretary from 2012-2015. Heidi also served as Western Division Representative on the National OAKE board from 2015-2018. She is pleased to be back on the NWKE board and is excited for our future endeavors! Heidi has taught K-6th at Millennium Elementary in Kent, WA since 2006 and PreK-2nd with the Bellevue Youth Choirs since 2013.

President-Elect: Bryan Van Pelt

Bryan Van Pelt was introduced to the Kodály method while attending the University of Washington in 2015.  Upon completion of the Music Education and Jazz Studies programs, Bryan Bryan Van Pelt is a K-8 elementary and middle school music educator in the Seattle area.  Originally from Sacramento California he grew up playing saxophone in middle school and high school, ultimately finding his way to Seattle, attending the University of Washington majoring in Jazz Studies and Music Education.  Bryan completed the Kodály Levels Program of Seattle in 2018 and recently completed a Masters in Education from Seattle Pacific University.  This past year Bryan served as a Member at Large on the NWKE board.  With these experiences he looks forward to serving as President Elect.

Secretary: Elizabeth Anderson

Elizabeth Anderson is a K-6 music educator who lives and teaches north of Seattle. She received a B.M. in Music Education from the University of Washington and her Master in Education from Seattle Pacific University and has completed her Kodály Certification from the Seattle Kodály Levels Program. She is also an active performer with the Seattle Wind Symphony, where she plays the French horn.

Treasurer: Katie Shuford Lehman

Katie Shuford Lehman is the Lower School Music Specialist at Charles Wright Academy in Tacoma, WA. She holds a BM from the University of Mississippi and a MM in Music Education from the University of Florida. In 2014, she received a Fulbright U.S. Student Program research grant to study at the Zoltán Kodály Pedagogical Institute of the Liszt Academy of Music in Kecskemét, Hungary, earning a Diploma from the Institute. Katie earned her Kodály certificate from the Kodály Institute at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and is a member of the faculty at the Carolina Kodály Institute in Hickory, North Carolina. 

Member-At-Large: Betsy Baeskens

More Information about Betsy Coming soon!

Member-At-Large: Kelly Larson

Kelly Larson completed her Kodaly Certification at Seattle Pacific University in 2017. She received a bachelor’s degree from Multnomah University in 2000 and taught private singing lessons for over a decade. Kelly currently teaches preschool-6th grade general music and choir at Bellevue Christian School, where she has taught for 6 years. She also sings and plays the ukulele with the band at Imprint Church in Woodinville.

Committee Person – Website/Social-Media: Kayla Johnson

Kayla Johnson graduated Washington State University in 2013 with a BS in Mathematics, BM in Choral Music Education, and MA in Music Education. Kayla then taught middle school math for nearly four years before realizing that she needed to pivot so she could follow her passion of teaching choral music. She then worked at Bellevue Youth Choirs for three years teaching students in grades 1-9 and completed level one of Kodály levels at Seattle Pacific University in 2017. Kayla currently is mostly a stay at home mom but does teach private lessons and still actively performs with The Esoterics and attends local workshops whenever she can.