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Home > About > News and Events > News > Member News > Lydia Kontos Announces Retirement from Kaufman Music Center

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Lydia Kontos Announces Retirement from Kaufman Music Center

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Nov 01, 2017

Lydia Kontos, a long-serving leader in the NYC arts community and former National Guild trustee, has announced her retirement after 40 years of leadership at Kaufman Music Center. In January of 1979, Lydia Kontos, then a public relations consultant with a background in concert management, joined the staff of The Hebrew Arts School for Music and Dance as a member of the administrative team of the brand-new concert hall at the Abraham Goodman House. Now, Kontos has announced her retirement, with a target date of September 2018.

“It is with joy and excitement – mixed with a measure of the bittersweet – that I tell you of my plans to retire,” Mrs. Kontos wrote in a letter to the Board, staff and faculty, noting that she will continue to serve in an advisory capacity upon her departure as executive director. “I am hoping that during the coming year, knowing that time really flies, the Board will have ample time to select a successor, and I will have time to tie up some loose ends and start loosening others.”

In recognition of her role at the organization, Kontos will be presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Kaufman Music Center’s 2018 Gala.

Kontos has had many notable achievements throughout her career, including: working with the NYC Department of Education to create Special Music School/P.S. 859, the only public K-8 school in the city for musically gifted children; helping to revive the Opus 118 Harlem School of Music in 2012; building a remarkable donor base for the Center, including members of the Goodman family, Elaine Kaufman, and Solomon Merkin; and the launch of Luna Lab as a part of Face the Music.

Kontos was a long-standing trustee of the National Guild and, in 2015, she was awarded the Milestone Award for her 20+ year commitment to arts education.

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