Alex Swartsel, Board Chair
Alex Swartsel (Board Chair) has been a member of the Capital City Symphony Board of Directors since 2012. Adept at helping new and in-transition organizations define strategy and achieve goals, her career includes work in the U.S. Senate, national politics, and a global trade association; she currently serves as Chief of Development, Finance, and External Affairs of Teach For America's D.C. Region. Her commitment to the transformative power of music and to strengthening D.C.’s arts community extends from CCS to the Choral Arts Society of Washington, where she is a member of the chorus and is serving as chorus President for the 2018-2019 season. A native of Orlando, Florida, Alex holds a B.A. in Political Science and Music from Wellesley College and an M.B.A. from Yale.
Virginia Elgin, Vice Chair
Virginia Elgin (Vice Chair) joined the Board in 1997, attracted by the opportunity the orchestra afforded her daughter to continue playing cello after leaving university. She has served as Corresponding Secretary, Co-Chair from 2002 to 2005 and Chair from 2008 to 2013. Virginia worked in Singapore and London before moving to the DC area to work at the British Embassy. Now retired from managing her husband's medical practice she continues to enjoy choral singing, which she has done since the age of nine, and has recently celebrated her fiftieth year as a member of a local church choir.
Allison Beck, Orchestra Representative
Allison joined the CCS Board as an Orchestra Representative in 2018. A lifelong musician, Allison plays the violin and believes in the transformative power of the arts to change communities and increase cultural understanding.
Allison currently works for Americans for the Arts, a national arts advocacy organization that uses local tools to advance the arts in America. She ensures that the Executive Office runs efficiently and takes every opportunity to build relationships with Americans for the Arts’s internal and external communities.
A native Texan, Allison received her B.A. in Music from Southern Methodist University with minors in arts management and arts entrepreneurship. She lives in Washington, DC and loves to travel, practice yoga, and spend time outdoors.
Katie Daugert, Orchestra Representative
Katie Daugert earned her Bachelor's degree in Music at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, and her Master's degree in Information Studies at The University of Texas at Austin. She has played cello with the Capital City Symphony since 2010, and currently sits principal of the section. Ms. Daugert is a librarian working in news media. She lives in the Washington, D.C. area and carves out as much time as possible to attend concerts, rehearse and perform with CCS, and play in chamber music groups. She continues to master the art of traveling with a cello on all forms of public transportation.
Deborah Edge is a string bass player with Capital City Symphony and lives on Capitol Hill. Sheretired from the practice of internal medicine in June, 2015. Prior to that she had founded and worked in a private internal medicine practice on Capitol Hill, Washington Primary Care Physicians, for over 30 years and, after leaving her practice, worked half time for four years in the medical clinic at SOME. She is now able to spend as much time as she can playing music. She is a member of the Capitol City Symphony (first chair), NIH Philharmonia, FMMC Chorale Orchestra. She plays regularly witha pianist, and they have regular coaching sessions. She has participated annually with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Side-by-Side summer program, playing orchestral and chamber music there for one week/year. She plays chamber music whenever given the chance. When not playing her string bass, Deborah can be found volunteering for Hawk Mountain Sanctuary ( where she is on the board), biking, swimming, or enjoying being a new grandma. She lives on Capital Hill with her husband, Neal Mann. They have two grown daughters, and one new grandson.
Nicholas McCoy joined the CCS Board after our 2017-18 season. Hailing from Texas, Nick studied classical piano, played in brass bands, and has sung in jazz and classical choirs. Nick currently works as an associate attorney for Mayer Brown in the financial services, regulatory, and enforcement practice. Prior to practicing law, Nick was a consultant for small and growing business regarding financial and marketing growth strategies.
Nick holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Missouri, and MBA from the University of Arizona, and a J.D. from the University of Texas - Austin.
Simon Miller joined the CCS board after our 2018-2019 season. Although he is new to the Washington, D.C. community, he has quickly jumped into the local food and sports scene. Simon took classical piano lessons until his high school graduation and combined his passion for music and interest in community service when he organized a free “Bagels and Beethoven” (no Beethoven was played) concert for a local retirement home.
Simon lives in the H Street NE neighborhood of Washington, D.C. He is a former collegiate tennis player, amateur bird watcher, and sporadic marathon runner. He holds an MBA in Nonprofit Management from Brandeis University's Heller School for Social Policy and Management.
Howard Spendelow, Recording Secretary
Howard Spendelow joined the CCS Board in the late 20th century and has served as Recording Secretary throughout the entire current millennium. As a History teacher (East Asia / “World”) at Georgetown University since 1979, he learned about the CCS back when it was the Georgetown Symphony Orchestra and performed in historic Gaston Hall on-campus.
Howard’s main artistic interest is in choral music. He’s been a member of the Oberlin Musical Union, the Memorial Church Choir at Harvard, and even a semester with Moscow State University’s Academic Choral Collective. Since 1980 he’s performed with the Choral Arts Society of Washington.
Charlton (Chuck) Templeton, Treasurer
Mr. Templeton comes to the Capital City Symphony after spending 14 years as principal tubist with the Georgia Philharmonic in Atlanta. A Nebraska native, Chuck he began his musical career with the Omaha Area Youth Orchestra before attending the University of Nebraska on the Westbrook Memorial Scholarship for Music Performance. During college, Chuck also was accepted to the 43rd Army National Guard Ceremonial Band based in Lincoln, Nebraska, and received military and musical training at Fort Leonard Wood, MO.
Mr. Templeton was a student of Craig Fuller, himself a student of the renowned Harvey Phillips, as well as Don Strand of the Atlanta Ballet. He holds a BS in information systems and an MBA from the Georgia Institute of Technology and received a diploma from the Stonier Graduate School of Banking at the University of Pennsylvania, where he also earned a Wharton Leadership Certificate.
As a Chief at the FDIC, Mr. Templeton leads a team responsible for implementing the statutory authorities of the Dodd-Frank legislation and ending too-big-to-fail. Previously he held a variety of positions in mergers and acquisitions and portfolio management for Bank of America and Fist Data Corporation. Chuck resides in the Capital Hill neighborhood of Washington, D.C.; when not counting rests in the back row, he is an avid BMW motorcycle enthusiast and can never seem to find enough books on U.S. history and politics.
Bradley Tobias joined the CCS Board after our 2018-19 season. He is from Richmond, Virginia, and spent the early years of his life playing tenor and baritone saxophone in concert bands, rock bands, jazz combos, choral house bands, and marching bands. Though he does not presently play, Brad can always be found with headphones in his ears or listening to music playing on his home or office speakers, and he especially enjoys listening to standards from the Jazz Age and twentieth century modern classics. Brad is a management-side employment and labor attorney with the law firm, Littler Mendelson.
Brad lives in the Trinidad neighborhood of Washington D.C. Apart from music, his hobbies include running, cooking, and taking his four year old golden retriever with him on adventures. He holds a B.A. from George Washington University, and a J.D. from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.