Elected Leaders

Brian Galante, President

Brian Galante is Associate Director of Choral Activities and, beginning in June 2018, Chair of the Department of Music at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. He conducts the University Chorale. Before taking on his administrative responsibilities, he also conducted University Singers (SA Chorus) and Men’s Chorus, and taught undergraduate courses in Vocal Pedagogy for the Choral Music Educator, Choral Methods and Choral Literature.

Galante received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting, with a related field in Voice Science and Pedagogy, from the University of North Texas. He holds Master of Music and Bachelor of Music Education degrees from Louisiana

State University. Previous choral appointments include Visiting Associate Director of Choral Studies at Louisiana State University; Conductor of the UNT Men’s Chorus and Conducting Associate of the UNT A Cappella Choir; Director of Choral Music/Coordinator of K-12 Music at Highland Park High School, Dallas, Texas; Director of Choirs at Episcopal High School and Director of Music at St. Louis King of France Catholic Church, both in Baton Rouge.

Brian says: "I am humbled by the trust that the division membership has placed in me, and honored to serve as president. This is an exciting time for ACDA: the recent changes in the bylaws reflect a new responsive, relevant ACDA, and I look forward to working with the states of the NW division and the National Board to further the growth of our organization. I also look forward to our division conference in Seattle next month, and the chance to continue the conversations that allow us all to be inspired by our shared choral art."

Tim Westerhaus. President-Elect

Dr. Timothy Westerhaus is the director of choirs and vocal studies at Gonzaga University. He serves as music director of the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist and is artistic director for its St. John’s Music Series. He has conducted choral ensembles in the United States, Europe, Colombia, South Korea, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. He chairs collegiate repertoire and resources for the Northwest American Choral Directors Association.


As a tenor, he sings in the Oregon Bach Festival Berwick Chorus and has sung under Helmuth Rilling, Matthew Halls, Jeffrey Kahane, and Craig Hella Johnson. He is active as a pianist and leads Baroque performances from the harpsichord.

Dr. Steven Zielke became President-Elect Designate as a result of the election held in September, 2019. 


Steven says...

"What an honor and a privilege it is to be called to serve in this manner and I look forward to this opportunity. These are such exciting times for choral music and we have never before seen a more diverse repertoire and the growth of so many kinds of ensembles.  Choral singing is truly central to the American experience for so many people.  Technology has created synergies that has allowed us to be connected in ways such as we have never seen, and with these opportunities comes the responsibility that choral music must serve our culture with the vibrancy and the meaning that it deserves.  And above all, as we work together, let us do it with commitment and delight.  As Nadia Boulanger once stated, 'What is done without joy is zero.'” 

Steven Zielke, President-

Elect Designate

About Steven...
Steven M. Zielke, Director of Choral Studies at Oregon State University is the Patricia Valian Reser Professor of Music. He directs the OSU Chamber Choir and teaches choral conducting and choral music pedagogy. Zielke earned his doctoral and master's degrees in choral conducting from Florida State University where he studied with Andre Thomas and Rodney Eichenberger. In 2016, Zielke was honored by Oregon State University with the Beaver Champion Award, for outstanding contributions to the university.
Prior to his graduate work, Zielke received a B.M.E. from Friends University (Wichita, Kans.) and taught middle and high school choral music in the Kansas public schools. Following his graduate work, Zielke was the Associate Director of Choirs at the University of Arizona where he conducted the Symphonic Choir and worked as a colleague with the late Dr. Maurice Skones.

Zielke is a frequent clinician and guest conductor, including guest conducting and teaching in Germany and China, and choirs under his direction have appeared at state, regional, and national conferences, including an invited 2015 performance at the National Collegiate Choral Association and three performances at NW ACDA conferences.  In addition, Zielke is often invited to present workshops and lectures on choral music and music education, including a session on community singing at the 2017 National ACDA conference in Minneapolis. This spring, he will be the conductor of the ACDA Western Division SATB High School Honor Choir.

Zielke is a past-president of the Oregon chapter of the American Choral Directors Association and a past-president of the Oregon Music Educators Association.  Additionally, he currently serves as the Adjudication Chair for Oregon ACDA.  He is also the founder and music director of the Corvallis Repertory Singers, a semi-professional ensemble devoted to exemplary performances of the finest in choral literature. Additionally, he serves as the director of music at the First Congregational United Church of Christ in Corvallis and is proud to be the Voice of the OSU Marching Band.

Dr. Nicole Lamartine became Director of Choral Activities at the University of Wyoming in 2008. She conducts the Collegiate Chorale, Singing Statesmen, advises the male a cappella Happy Jacks, and teaches conducting and applied voice.

Under her leadership, choirs of the University of Wyoming have performed at the 2015 NW National Association for Music Education (NAfME) conference, the 2012 Northwest American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) conference, the 2011 Northwest MENC conference in Bellevue, WA and at the 2011 National Collegiate Choral Organization (NCCO) national conference. Her choirs at the University of Wyoming have enjoyed premiere performances and recordings of music by Pulitzer Prize and Grammy-winning composer Jennifer Higdon, Forrest Pierce, John Muehleisen, Gabriela Lena Frank, and Craig Hella Johnson.

Nicole Lamartine,

Lamartine is becoming a resource for men’s choir singing in the US, having led The UW Singing Statesmen to prominence and with her research on female leaders of male choirs. She conducted a program of men’s choir music at Lincoln Center in the spring of 2016.

She often serves as a conductor and clinician across the US and Europe and recently appeared as the NW ACDA Men’s Honor Choir conductor at the 2014 conference as well as the conductor of the DoDDS All-Europe Honor Choir in Wiesbaden, Germany. She was the 2015 Wyoming All-State Mixed Choir conductor and conducted the Washington All-State Women’s Choir and the Montana All-State Mixed Choir in 2016. Lamartine also serves as  Conductor of the semi-professional choir “Chor Anno,” based in the state of Washington.

Patrick Ryan - Past-President Council Chair

Patrick Ryan was president of NWACDA from 2012 - 2014. He currently serves as Past-President Council Chair. Patrick is head choral director at Great Falls High School in Great Falls, Montana.  Prior to Great Falls, Patrick taught at Havre High School in north-central Montana, where he directed six vocal ensembles and taught courses in music theory and music history. His select high school women’s ensemble, Belles Voix, performed at the 2009 MENC divisional convention, and the Havre High School A Cappella Choir was one of eleven groups worldwide selected to premiere the concert version of Eric Whitacre’s Paradise Lost at Carnegie Hall in 2010. 

Patrick Ryan,


Council Chair

He began his career in rural Shelby, Montana, where he taught junior and senior high school choirs. Mr. Ryan has a passion for secondary school music, and his experiences have taught him that any size school can have a thriving and successful choral program.

Mr. Ryan is the immediate Past-President of the Montana Choral Directors Association. He is a frequent clinician and adjudicator in Montana, and recently presented sessions for the Montana Choral Director’s Association, Montana Collegiate MENC, the Arizona Music Educator’s state convention, and the American Musicological Society’s Rocky Mountain Chapter regional convention. In 2012 Patrick will conduct the Korean English-Speaking Schools National Honor Choir in Seoul, South Korea.

Mr. Ryan received his Masters degree in Choral Conducting from Northern Arizona University, where he studied conducting with Edith Copley and Gary Weidenaar. While in Flagstaff, he conducted the Northern Arizona University Men’s Chorale and the Coconino Community College Choir. He received his music education degree with an emphasis in secondary choral music from Pacific Lutheran University, where he studied with Richard Sparks and Richard Nance. As a high school student in Puyallup, Washington he was fortunate to sing under master teachers Richard Nace, Dinah Helgeson, and Pat Michel. He has been privileged to sing with the PLU Choir of the West, The NAU Shrine of the Ages Choir, Choral Arts Northwest, and Tacoma Opera. Mr. Ryan is an active member of ACDA, NAfME, Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, and NFHS.

Outside of his professional life, Patrick enjoys being a football and basketball referee for the Montana Officials Association. He is blessed to have a wonderful wife, Lynn, also a choral conductor, and two children, son Kian and  daughter Kendall.

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