By PHOEBE SMITH • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
Oneonta native Cassandra Miller said she never imagined leading the Catskill Symphony Orchestra when she returned home two years ago, but now that she has officially been upgraded from interim to full-time executive director, she is excited about upcoming plans.
Miller, who had been in an interim role since March, spoke with AllOtsego not long after she shed the tag in July.
“(I hope to) bring my background and be able to open up the organization to new audiences,” she said.
Miller graduated from Boston University in 2006 with a degree in journalism.
She completed abroad teaching opportunities in the Czech Republic and Italy, then lived in New York City, where she was employed as a reporter for lifestyle, arts and entertainment at a local magazine. Throughout her 20s, Miller worked in journalism, writing for The Washington Post and The Daily Star, among others.
Additionally, Miller has spent much of her professional career in Baltimore, where she developed a specialty in arts and tourism. She worked as the content and publications manager for “Visit Baltimore,” as well as the public relations manager for “Baltimore Center Stage,” where she helped turn “One Night in Miami” into an award-winning film.
At BCS, Miller said she utilized her practice as a journalist and employed her passion for the arts to successfully market exhibits, events and productions to record breaking audience numbers.
However, Miller decided to return home during the summer of 2019, unsure of her next move. She began working at Brewery Ommegang and enjoyed their music concerts.
That August, Miller was hired by SUNY Oneonta as a visiting lecturer of communications. She also served as the marketing and communications manager at the Iroquois Indian Museum in Howe’s Cave, before taking on the CSO job.
As executive director, Miller leads marketing and fundraising endeavors, organizes grants and strategic planning, and works to uphold community involvements and partnerships.
Her skill sets merge when she is “involving the arts and supporting the arts, and getting all types
of people excited about the arts,” she said.
Miller also serves as marketing director of Oneonta’s “City of the Hills Festival.”
Miller said she thinks her specialty is “in bumping organizations to the next level” and now hopes to bring that vision to CSO, which has an ambitious 2021-22 upcoming season.
“I am amped to be supporting a hometown organization that’s been around since 1953,” she said. “The Catskill Symphony Orchestra is one of Oneonta’s many gems and I am excited to be riding this current wave of its history as its executive director.”