Salon Concerts Board of Directors
Surangi Widyaratne is passionate about education and educational opportunities for young people. She is a supporter of the arts and wants every child to have the opportunity to experience and appreciate music. She serves on the Executive Committee of the EANES Education Foundation and heads two prominent Montessori schools in Austin Texas. She is also a pianist and composer.
“Through the sounds of music, we express ourselves, humanity, love, freedom and peace while conveying a sense of unity that seeks nor sees no boundaries. Just as how a musician and an instrument come together with others to make one piece sound so brilliant……..The opportunities we can offer to our young musicians to play an instrument or simply appreciate music is a gift of a lifetime.”
Lisa Hopkins is a librarian at Texas A&M University-Central Texas in Killeen. She is the secretary on the board of the Kanter Kallman Foundation out of New York, whose mission is to cultivate the next generation of artists and audiences through outreach, increasing exposure and accessibility to the arts, and supporting artists. Lisa was born into a long family tradition of music practitioners and supporters, and is devoted to inspiring that passion in others.
Irene Lathrop Travis was born in Austin and attended Austin Public Schools, including Austin High School. She began studying piano at age 5 and violin at 12 with the University of Texas String Project. She majored in music history at Mills College in Oakland, California.
She did not pursue a career in music, but received an M.L.S from the University of California Berkeley in 1966 and a Ph.D. in Information Science, also from Berkeley, in 1974. She taught in the School of Library and Information Services at the University of Maryland from 1972 until 1980, when she was hired by Planning Research Corporation, a government information services contractor. In 1988 she left PRC to become a member of the central planning staff for information services at the World Bank. A specialist in organization of information, she worked there on problems of transitioning from paper to electronic recordkeeping. She also studied violin during that time and played in community orchestras and with amateur chamber music groups in the Washington, DC, area. She retired in 1996 and returned to Austin, where her parents were still living.
In Austin, she taught part time for 12 years as an adjunct at the School of Information at the University of Texas. In 1997, she also because the Editor of the Bulletin of the Association for Information Science and Technology, a position that she still holds. In recent years she has returned to studying the piano.
She has two children and four grandchildren in Cedar Park, Texas, and Toronto, Canada.
She became a member of the Board of Salon Concerts in February 2013 and its treasurer in the summer of 2016.
Cathy Cocco is an Executive IT Architect with IBM. She has served in the Salon Concerts Board of Directors since 2010 when her daughter was a CHAMPS violist at Kealing Middle School. Cathy grew up in New York City and moved with her husband to Austin in 1992. She has grown to love her adopted home and volunteers as a board member of the Cornell Club of Austin Alumni Club and actively promotes STEM and mentors Austin youth in her spare time. She serves as an Austin City Commissioner for the Independent Citizens Redistricting Committee until 2020.
Nan Hampton has lived in Austin since 1955 when she came from Longview in East Texas to attend the University of Texas. She holds a BA in Liberal Arts, a Masters in Library and Information Science and a PhD in Zoology. She taught undergraduate genetics labs at the University of Texas for 11 years and upon retirement took up piano lessons again with Kathryn Mishell as her inspiring teacher. Nan has served on the board of Salon Concerts for more than 10 years while also volunteering at Learning Ally and the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. Besides music her other great love is travel - Tanzania, Antartica, the North Pole, Mongolia, Galapagos Islands, Iceland, Greenland and many other exciting places.
Sanjna is a practicing physician in Austin and a CHAMPS parent. She is passionate about musical education and the arts. Her two sons play violin and cello in the CHAMPS program for 2 years. She directs a non-profit community clinic which provides free medical services to those in need.