Margaret Cafarelli Elected Music Academy of the West Board Chair

Margaret Cafarelli, a real estate executive whose firm specializes in mixed-use urban development and investment, has been elected chair of the Board of Directors for the Music Academy of the West. Her two-year term will begin on January 1, 2015. Ms. Cafarelli will succeed Robert Toledo, whose term as chair began in 2013. The Music Academy Board elections took place on December 2.

Born in Phoenix, Ms. Cafarelli studied marketing and finance at Arizona State University before embarking on a career in real estate development. After working for a succession of small, family owned firms, she founded Urban Developments in 1999. The San Francisco-based company specializes in sustainable urban mixed-use projects. Ms. Cafarelli serves on the Sustainable Development Council of the Urban Land Institute, a public policy organization based in Washington, D.C.; is a Board member for both the UCSB Economic Forecast Project and the Santa Barbara Downtown Organization; and is a member of the Partnership Council at the Community Environmental Council of Santa Barbara. In 2007 she completed the Executive Program in Business Strategies for Environmental Sustainability at Stanford University Graduate School of Business and the Woods Institute for the Environment in Palo Alto, California. Her recent projects include the Santa Barbara Public Market and the broader Alma del Pueblo residential and commercial development, both on Victoria Street in Santa Barbara.

Ms. Cafarelli, who has residences in Santa Barbara and San Francisco, joined the Music Academy Board in 2009, and has served on the Finance, Marketing, Buildings & Grounds, Executive, Campus Renovation, and Education Policy committees. She became the Board's first vice chair in 2013. Ms. Cafarelli also has chaired the Santa Barbara Golf Invitational, an annual Music Academy benefit, and has participated in the Compeer Program, which pairs Academy Fellows with Academy donors and other Santa Barbara community members for informal socializing throughout the summer season.

"I am honored to be named Board chair elect of the Music Academy at such an exciting time," said Ms. Cafarelli. "The Academy has made significant strides in recent years, and I look forward to helping it continue the important work of training the next generation of great classical musicians."

In related developments, Warren Staley, Tim Taylor, and Pat Toppel were newly elected to three-year terms on the Music Academy Board. (Announcements about these appointments will be distributed separately.) Sharon Westby will retire from the Academy Board effective December 31.

Founded in 1947, the Music Academy of the West is among the nation's preeminent summer schools and festivals for gifted young classical musicians. The Academy provides these promising musicians with the opportunity for advanced study and frequent performance under the guidance of internationally renowned faculty artists, guest conductors, and soloists. Admission to the Academy is strictly merit based, and Fellows receive full scholarships (tuition, room, and board). Academy alumni are members of major symphony orchestras, chamber orchestras, ensembles, opera companies, and university and conservatory faculties throughout the world. Many enjoy careers as prominent solo artists. Based in Santa Barbara, the Music Academy of the West presents more than 200 public events annually, including performances by faculty, visiting artists, and Fellows; masterclasses; orchestra and chamber music concerts; and fully staged opera. The Music Academy began broadcasting live, high-definition simulcasts by the world-renowned Metropolitan Opera at Hahn Hall in October 2008. For more information, visit

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