Mary Palmer headshot

The Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra Board of Directors has named Dr. Mary Palmer President. Palmer, president of Mary Palmer and Associates, LLC., succeeds RK Kelley. Her two-year term begins July 1, 2018.

“Mary’s leadership experience and extensive background in education and the arts will serve the orchestra well during these next critical and exciting years for our organization,” said Christopher Barton, executive director. “We remain focused on enhancing our artistic excellence, expanding our regional presence, and performing in Steinmetz Hall at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts when it opens in 2020.”

After serving as Professor of Music Education and Dean of the University of Central Florida College of Education, Palmer is now UCF Professor and Dean Emerita. She has served as President of professional organizations including MENC: National Association for Music Education Southern Division; VSA Arts of Florida; Florida Music Educators Association; and the Florida Alliance for Arts Education.

“I am honored to lead the board in its mission to enrich and inspire the diverse communities of Central Florida through the transformative power of live music,” said Palmer. “In addition to our concert performances, we offer an array of education programs reaching people of all ages in our community – in schools, hospitals, arts centers, science centers, and senior centers.”

Additional Philharmonic Board appointments include vice president and president-elect, Melody B. Lynch, Shareholder at Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor and Reed, P.A.; treasurer, community leader and retired Orange County Comptroller, Martha Haynie; and secretary, Jeffrey Moore, Dean, College of Arts and Humanities, University of Central Florida.


Celebrating its 25th Anniversary Season, the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra is led by Music Director Eric Jacobsen and comprised of accomplished musicians from around the world. The Philharmonic annually presents the FAIRWINDS Classics and Pops Series at Bob Carr Theater and its Sounds of Summer, Focus and Women in Song Series at The Plaza Live. Known for its artistic excellence and community collaboration, the Philharmonic presents more than 150 live concerts and impacts more than 70,000 children, youth and families annually through its Young People’s Concerts, Symphony Storytime Series, Notes in Your Neighborhood program, and free outdoor community concerts. A resident company of the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, the Philharmonic will perform in Steinmetz Hall when it opens in 2020. Learn more at orlandophil.org.