Berklee Today

Alumni Beat

  Karen Bell
  Karen Bell '90
  Nick Balkin

I hope the new year has gotten off to a great start for everyone. As a Berklee graduate and former staff member, it's great to once again be a part of the Berklee community. As the new director of alumni affairs, I have big shoes to fill. Adrian Ross has been one of the guiding forces at the Office of Alumni Affairs for the past five years. Through his sincerity and dedication, a great deal has been accomplished for alumni. On behalf of Berklee alumni everywhere and the Office of Alumni Affairs, thank you Adrian!

After I started my new job, I found out just how busy this office is. Throughout the fall, Boston-area alumni have enjoyed a variety of simulcast events between Los Angeles and Boston. On September 29, 2005, Boston alumni enjoyed "Taking Care of Business as a Performer" with guest artist Kathy Mattea. A two-time Grammy winner and Country Music Association female vocalist of the year, Mattea discussed the business aspects of her successful career as a performing and recording artist. On October 5, Boston-area alumni again gathered in the David Friend Recital Hall for the panel discussion "Getting Paid to Play." The panel included some of the top alumni recording artists and touring musicians such as Tariqh Akoni '91, Cheche Alara '94, Nate Morton '94, Jim McGorman '95, Rob Gonzales '92, and Barry Squire. Charyn Harris '88 moderated the event. Lastly, on November 8, Derek Sivers '90 (founder of CD Baby) shared information on marketing your music and opportunities for the independent artist. Sivers's sense of humor and charismatic personality were well received by the Boston audience during the late-night telecast. All events were quite successful. Remember to check your e-mail for announcements about up-and-coming coast-to-coast panel discussions and interviews.

In coordination with the Audio Engineering Society Convention, we held an alumni brunch on October 9. The event was well attended by nearly 100 Berklee alumni from the New England area. Carl Beatty, Rob Jaczko, and Dan Thompson presented Ken Lewis '91 with a Distinguished Alumni Award. It was a great time for alumni to reconnect and catch up.

From the left: Karl Steudel '89 and Dr. Henry E. Schniewind '99 at the Boston Alumni Chapter Holiday Social.  

November 13, Pat Pattison presented "Lyric Writing From a Title" to the San Francisco-area alumni. All of those in attendance had a great time as they welcomed Pattison back to the West Coast for another informative event. In December, Alumni Affairs hosted parties in New York and Boston. The Alumni Holiday Social for New York-area alumni was held on December 4 at the Cutting Room, a beautiful venue owned by Berklee alumnus Steve Walter '78. Approximately 30 alumni came out to enjoy the evening. Pablo Vergara, Chris Farr '02, Shay Salhov '02, and Evan Gregor '04 provided the entertainment.

At the annual Alumni Holiday Social/Singer Showcase event in Boston, New England alumni enjoyed spending time together prior to the show. We were all excited to see the performance, and the students did not disappoint. It was a great way to end the year.

  From the left: Karen Bell, Rob Jaczko, distinguished alumnus Ken Lewis '91, Daniel Thompson, and Carl Beatty at the New York alumni brunch held in coordination with the AES Convention in October.

As we begin 2006, full of expectations and enthusiasm, I am honored to have the opportunity to continue nurturing the relationship between Berklee and its alumni. I've had the pleasure of speaking with many alumni thus far, and I hope to hear from many more of you. Please contact me at, and let me know how the Office of Alumni Affairs can help to meet the needs of those in your area. In conjunction with your alumni chapter coordinators, the Office of Alumni Affairs can provide local services to better serve your alumni community. Be sure to visit the alumni website at to stay on top of what's new in the Berklee community. That's all for now. I wish you all the very best,

-Karen Bell
Director of Alumni Affairs

Click here to see all upcoming Alumni Events.

Click here to contact your chapter president.