June 14, 2023

Pasadena, CA The Board of Directors of the Pasadena Symphony Association (PSA) announce the opening of the search for their next Chief Executive Officer (CEO). The national search will be conducted by Arts Consulting Group, the leading provider of executive search services for the arts and culture industry, and will be overseen by a Search Committee of the Board of Directors. The CEO search commences after the departure of longtime CEO, Lora Unger to become Executive Director of the Performing Arts Center Eastside (PACE) in Bellevue, Washington. The selected candidate will be expected to carry on the artistic, institutional and financial growth achieved throughout her tenure.

During the interim period, the administration of the Pasadena Symphony and POPS will be guided by a leadership team of upper management, overseen by the President and Executive Committee of the Board of Directors. This team will be led by Drew Flaherty, who has been named as Chief Operating Officer, effective immediately, and includes Chief Development Officer, Scott Vandrick and Director of Marketing & Public Relations, Marisa McCarthy, with support from staff members Alex Chu, Director of Education and Community Engagement and Tim Harwick, Director of Patron Services. A seasoned performing arts administrator, Flaherty has extensive knowledge of the Pasadena Symphony and POPS’ operations, having begun his career with the organization in 2009 as Stage Manager, and acting as General Manager for the past eight years, where he oversaw management of the orchestra, concert production, stage facilities and artistic planning.

Interested candidates for the CEO position can view the job description at Pasadena Symphony and POPS :: CEO :: Executive Search (artsconsulting.com), and applications and inquiries about the role may be directed to PasadenaSymphony-POPS@ArtsConsulting.com. The Pasadena Symphony Association does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, gender, age, orientation, handicap or veteran status. All qualified applicants will be given equal opportunity.


Formed in 1928, the Pasadena Symphony and POPS is an ensemble of Hollywood’s most talented, sought after musicians. With extensive credits in the film, television, recording and orchestral industries, the artists of Pasadena Symphony and POPS are the most heard in the world.

The Pasadena Symphony and POPS performs in two of the most extraordinary venues in the United States: Ambassador Auditorium, known as the Carnegie Hall of the West, and the Los Angeles  Arboretum & Botanic Garden. The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein, leads the POPS as Principal Pops Conductor, succeeding Marvin Hamlisch.

A hallmark of its robust education programs, the Pasadena Symphony Association has served the youth of the region for over five decades through the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) comprised of eight performing ensembles, with over 400 gifted 4th-12th grade students from all over Southern California. The PYSO Symphony has performed at venues across the globe as well as on the television show GLEE.

The PSA provides people from all walks of life with powerful access points to the world of symphonic music.