Board of Trustees & Staff

  • Annette Briffa, President, Marketing & Publicity Committee
  • Debbie Kline, Vice President, Volunteer Committee
  • Patti Stanley, Treasurer & Bookkeeper
  • John Enz, Artistic Director
  • Phillip Pugh, Assistant Artistic Director
  • Larisa Epps, Executive Director
  • Dr. Anita Franzione, Alumni Relations Committee
  • Catherine Isnardi, Social Committee
  • Jason Method, Marketing & Publicity Committee
  • Shilpi Mukherjee, Alumni Relations Committee
  • Satya Noupada, Fundraising & Grant Committee, Vimeo Videos
  • Dr. Kalpana Patel, Volunteer Committee, Photography
  • Paul Robertson, Fundraising & Grant Committee
  • Dr. Trineice Robinson-Martin, Marketing & Publicity Committee
  • Barbara Witmer, Alumni Relations Committee
  • Amy Woodward, Fundraising & Grant Committee

    Advisory Board

  • Dr. Richard Hodges
  • Michael Meduski

    Biographies

    Annette Briffa is a Business Development Associate with a New York based IT Consulting firm. She has been an active volunteer in the West Windsor-Plainsboro school district for many years as well as a former Homefront Cherry Tree Club volunteer. She has served on the YOCJ Board of Trustees for 3 years, including Vice President from 2016-2017 and assumed the role of President in May 2017. She is a avid supporter of music education as well as charitable outreach, including most recently working to arrange a fundraiser with YOCJ to support the Houston Youth Symphony and surrounding Houston school music programs in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. Proceeds donated will be used to help replace lost and damaged instruments.

    Larisa Epps, Executive Director for YOCJ, graduated Summa Cum Laude from Montclair State University with a degree in Music Education. She was a string specialist in the public schools for 6 years. Additionally, Ms. Epps also runs a private violin studio in Hamilton Square since 2000 and manages a special event music ensemble, Tutti Dolce, The Violin Trio since 2007. She was the site coordinator for the NJ American String Teacher Association (ASTA) Certificate Advancement Program Exams held at Rider University from 2008 to 2016. Ms. Epps is currently honored to be sharing her life long passion for music and her love of organizing events, with this unique youth orchestra, that has made such a noteworthy impact on generations of young musicians!

    Anita Franzione, MPA, DrPH, is an assistant professor at Rutgers University, Bloustein School for Planning and Public Policy and program chair for Health Administrion.  Dr. Franzione served on a number of health-related nonprofit boards in New York City.  She is currently a member of the Junior League of Greater Princeton where she was the Strategic Planning Chair.  Dr. Franzione brings 30 years of operations and administrative management to YOCJ, as well as a passion and minor degree in musicology.

    Richard Hodges, saxophonist, has appeared as a soloist in Europe, Canada, and throughout the United States including his debut recital in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in New York City.  While specializing in the music of contemporary French composers, he has also premiered works by composers from the United States and Japan. A graduate of Wichita State University, Dr. Hodges received his doctorate in education from the College of William & Mary.  Dr. Hodges holds master’s degrees from Louisiana State University and the University of Mississippi. He has served on the faculties of Indiana University, Columbia University, and the University of Mississippi. Former teachers include Eugene Rousseau and Lawrence Teal. Dr. Hodges currently teaches saxophone and clarinet at Thomas Nelson Community College in Hampton, Virginia where he serves as the Director of Learning Resources. Dr. Hodges served as assistant conductor at YOCJ from 1996 to 2010.

    Catherine Isnardi is the mother of four musical children. She lives in Plainsboro. She has a deep and fond love of music. Catherine is a pediatric nurse and at this moment  works as a school nurse for the West Windsor- Plainsboro School District. Catherine enjoys being with the children and assisting the students and conductors with the youth orchestra.

    Debbie Kline presently serves as Vice President of the YOCJ Executive Board after serving one year as the Board Secretary.  Mrs. Kline has worked as an 8th Grade World History teacher at Community Middle School in the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District for the past 13 years.   Prior to that, Mrs. Kline worked for 14 years in the private sector as a Project Manager for a leading, national industrial supply distributor.

    Michael Meduski, YOCJ Advisory Board, is a retired Lt. Colonel, US Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps, active and reserve.  He is a graduate of College of the Holy Cross, Suffolk University Law School, The US Army Judge Advocate General’s School at University of Virginia, is a member of the Massachusetts Bar, and has worked in defense contracting for RCA, GE and American Overseas Marine Corporation, a General Dynamics subsidiary. Since moving to West Windsor twenty years ago Mike has been active in West Windsor Little League and WW-P Babe Ruth Baseball as a coach, manager and League Coordinator,  with WW-P Pop Warner Wildcats Youth Football Club in many capacities including Football Commissioner and Conference representative, and was an officer in the WWP North High School Football Booster Club.  Mike gigged locally and in the greater Philadelphia area for many years as a bassist and drummer for the Princeton School of Rock band Random Clarity.  At First Presbyterian Church of Hamilton Square he has been ordained an Elder, serves on session, is a commissioner to Presbytery, is bassist for the 98:4 Praise Band, and occasionally sings in choir.  Mike continues his music education in bass guitar, drum set, keys and vocals with local professionals Bob Gilmartin, Chris Richardson, Dragana Cotra Reljin, and Sarah Riddle.  Mike values the opportunity to be a community member able to volunteer in support of YOCJ, and appreciates the ability to reconnect with the many members of YOCJ staff who are also teachers in the WWP school district where his now adult children played in Orchestra and Band.

    Once upon a time, Jason Method worked as an investigative journalist for the Asbury Park Press, which is part of what were known as “newspapers,” a relic of pre-Internet and pre iPhone days. Now he writes for Vanguard, the Malvern, Pennsylvania-based investment company. Jason is the father of four daughters, who all play instruments. Alicia, his third daughter, plays cello for YOCJ. Jason can’t even read music, but he’s working to expand his knowledge of classical music and its history. He thinks he can maybe recognize a fugue when he hears one.
    Shilpi Mukherjee is an Investment professional and brings with her over 15 years of financial management experience in institutions like Lord Abbett & Co, Nomura Securities, Princeton Capital Management and Citigroup. She has an Engineering degree from Birla Institute of Technology in India, a masters in finance from XLRI, and an MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.  Both her kids play the double basses and have enjoyed playing with the YOCJ for several years. She loves hiking and mountain climbing.

    Satya Noupada is the Senior Director at Infosys Ltd of New York. Mr. Noupada has been working with various financial service organizations in New York / New Jersey area. Mr. Noupada brings 20 years of sales and information technology experience to the YOCJ Board of Trustees. He currently serves on the Fundraising/Grant Committee and handles the Vimeo Video uploads of the YOCJ concert footage.

    Dr. Kalpana Patel is the owner/photographer at KapuPatel Photography.  Dr. Patel has served as a chair and Board of Trustees to the Mercer County Chain Reaction Youth Council for the March of Dimes from 2011 to 2016.   Prior to that she was a Director at Johnson and Johnson Consumer Companies.  She currently on the board of Women’s Initiative at the Homefront.   She brings over 15 years of experience in community service.

    Paul Robertson is a Senior Portfolio Manager at Bernstein Global Wealth Management where he is involved in both money management and providing financial advice to high net worth clients. He has degrees in Economics, Law and Business Administration, has worked as an management consultant for McKinsey & Co, and began his career as an economist for the Australian Government. Paul played the violin as a child, classical guitar as a college student, and now attempts to inspire his two sons to practice their instruments by taking piano lessons and practicing every night.

    Dr. Trineice Robinson-Martin serves as part of the jazz faculty Princeton University; is the executive director of the African American Jazz Caucus, Inc. 501(c)3 Organization; is the Creative Arts Director at Turning Point United Methodist Church in Trenton, NJ, where she founded the Christian Education and Arts Division (CEAD);  serves on the national faculty of the Gospel Music Workshop of America, Inc.; is a founding and executive board member of the Donald Meade Legacy Jazz Griot Award; the founder of Soul Ingredients® Voice Studio; and is an active member of both the Jazz Education Network (JEN) and National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS). Dr. Robinson-Martin is an internationally recognized voice pedagogue and scholar in the area of contemporary music and the creator of Soul Ingredients®: the methodology. For YOCJ, she serves on the Publicity and Marketing Committee.

    Patti Stanley is a self-employed accountant with over 30 years experience working with non-profit organizations. In addition, she provides bookkeeping and tax services to small through medium size businesses in the Mercer County area. Patti is also the treasurer for the Kidsbridge Tolerance Museum in Ewing, NJ. Patti currently serves on the YOCJ Board of Trustees as the Treasurer and the Bookkeeper.

    Barbara Witmer is a 5th grade band teacher at Millstone River School in the West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District.  Barbara plays oboe in the Capital Philharmonic Orchestra and performs as a free lance musician in the area.  In addition, she also teaches private oboe students from her home in Pennington. Ms. Witmer serves YOCJ on the Alumni Committee.

    Amy Woodward has a Masters Degree in Special Education, and is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.  She has worked in the field of special education since 1995, and is currently a case manager and behavior analyst at a school for students with special needs.  She is participating on the Fundraising Committee for YOCJ, and is looking forward to working with the Board to support this wonderful group of young musicians and talented conductors.