Dr. Tim Westerhaus elected president-elect for NW ACDA

Here's what Dr. Tim Westerhaus had to say about being elected to the office of president-elect-designate for NWACDA. “I am humbled and grateful for the opportunity to serve Northwest ACDA in this role. I look forward to continuing the tradition of a vibrant and collaborative choral community here. I am eager to collaborate with ACDA colleagues to build upon our past successes and engage with issues and opportunities that face us today.”

More about Tim
Dr. Timothy Westerhaus is director of choirs and vocal studies at Gonzaga University, where he also serves as Music Department chair. He has served as music director of the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist since 2014, where he directs the St. John’s Music Series and its Kantorei Choir and Collegium Orchestra. He frequently clinics high school, collegiate, and community choirs in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington, and he hosts high school festivals in Portland, Spokane, and Seattle with the intent of bringing together high school educators and their students in affirmative choral celebrations. As a tenor, he has sung with the Oregon Bach Festival for nine seasons and continues to sing with Helmuth Rilling in the Internationale Bachakademie in Germany.


Professional singing in the Northwest has included Male Ensemble Northwest, Bitterroot Baroque in Montana, and the Idaho Bach Festival. Committed to bridging local and global communities, he has led choirs on intercultural exchange tours in Colombia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.


Dr. Westerhaus has served on the Northwest ACDA board as Collegiate Repertoire & Resources chair (2014-present) and on the Washington ACDA board as Collegiate Repertoire & Standards chair (2011-2014). As Northwest liaison for ACDA’s International Conductor Exchange Program (ICEP, 2014-2017), he coordinated residencies in the Northwest for conductors from Sweden, South Korea, and Central and South America, and he completed an ICEP fellowship to South Korea in 2016.


His presentations at Northwest ACDA conferences range from Bach Performance Practice to exploring African American Spirituals as a choral response to racial inequality. He has presented at and served as pianist for Washington ACDA’s annual Summer Institute.


Under his direction, Gonzaga’s Concert Choir performed Pärt’s Berliner Messe at the 2015 Northwest ACDA conference and will perform at the Washington Music Educators Association conference in 2018.

Dr. Westerhaus received his undergraduate degree in sacred music at the University of St. Thomas with Dr. Angela Broeker and his master and doctoral degrees at Boston University with Dr. Ann Howard Jones. 

Northwest ACDA Vision

Eight years ago, I moved to the Northwest with few connections in the choral community beyond the Oregon Bach Festival. It was through the supportive Northwest ACDA community that I found new relationships with choral colleagues in Spokane, across Washington, and throughout the Northwest. It is out of a spirit of gratitude for the welcome, mentoring, and support that I have received from you that I would be honored to serve Northwest ACDA as president. 


Building upon our Northwest ACDA strengths as a community that is encouraging, creative, and passionate about our pursuit of choral excellence, I would seek to:

  1. support mentoring and collaborative initiatives, particularly with early-career conductors,

  2. promote student leadership among emerging choral leaders at secondary and collegiate levels,

  3. advocate for choral arts at all ages and in both rural and urban communities,

  4. foster rich choral exchanges between international and Northwest choirs,

  5. engage choral arts with relevant issues in our local and global communities, particularly those involving diversity,

  6. sustain and expand the creation of new choral works through composing initiatives that promote Northwest voices.

By building upon our thriving choral community through mentoring, collaboration, diverse engagement, and promoting new compositions, I believe we can expand and deepen our impact as choral artists throughout the Northwest.


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