Board of Directors

Larry Bechler grew up playing music: first piano, then trumpet all the way through college marching band and into post-college bands. He has a love of live chamber music, spawned by BDDS and the Spoleto Festival in Charleston. He practices law at Murphy Desmond S.C and has served on various committees and commissions throughout his life.

Michael Bridgeman is the retired Communications Director for Wisconsin Public Television where he oversaw promotion, public relations, design, special events and online services. He has been active in historic preservation and neighborhood organizations and served for ten years on the Madison Arts Commission, including two as chair. Michael has attended BDDS concerts since the first season and also enjoys orchestral music, opera and theater.

Barbara Johnson has spent her career in publishing, mostly in New York and, since 2009, in Madison, where she recently retired as president of Rowland Reading Foundation. In New York, she was the president of Time Warner’s legal publishing division and an internet entrepreneur. Listening to chamber music? Having fun? She’s loved discovering them together in Madison at BDDS.

Carol “Orange” Schroeder and her husband Dean have been co-owners of Orange Tree Imports on Monroe Street since 1975. She also does freelance writing on the subjects of retailing, Danish culture and medical terminology. She has served on the CitiArts Commission, the boards of WHA-TV, United Way, Susan G Komen for the Cure, and the Madison Youth Choirs, as well as the advisory boards of Savoyards and APT.

Miriam Simmons served as the Assistant Dean for Professional Development in the Graduate School at UW-Madison. A major responsibility was directing the Wisconsin Idea Seminar, a five-day tour of the state that immerses forty faculty and academic staff members in the realities of Wisconsin. She is on the board of the Madison Civic Club and considers BDDS her new BFF.

Sarah Siskind is an attorney who specializes in class action and other complex litigation. She has represented clients in trial, mediation, and arbitrations in front of a variety of federal, state and local forums, and served as lead counsel in numerous large-scale class action lawsuits. She’s a champion for children in the arts and joined the BDDS board in 2014.

Norma Sober, now retired, had a long career as an arts administrator in Madison as the director of outreach at the Madison Civic Center and as director of development and education at Madison Repertory Theatre. She is a member of the Madison Arts Commission and is an occasional consultant to cultural organizations, for which she sometimes gets paid.

Vicki Stewart helped to found Madison Repertory Theatre in 1969. She held just about every position there through the years until her retirement in 1999. She has been a member of the Madison Arts Commission and has continued to volunteer for civic organizations such as Downtown Rotary Club and the Theater Grant Advisory Panel of Dane County Cultural Affairs Commission.

Teri Venker has led arts marketing as the director of marketing for the Madison Symphony Orchestra, from which she recently retired, and for the Wisconsin Union Theater.  Teri and her husband, Terry, enjoy bicycling and international travel.  She also volunteers at Lakeview Elementary School and with the Madison Trust for Historic Preservation.

Anne Taylor Wadsack, an attorney in private practice in Madison, is a shareholder with DeWitt Ross & Stevens, S.C., which has been a supporter of BDDS for several years.  Anne describes herself as an amateur musician “who has the benefit of never having to perform in public.”