Accomplishments 2016

Our Vision:

Instrument-based music education available for all children in the United States, beginning at the earliest age possible, offered in schools or as after-school programs for a significant length of time (minimum two years and four hours per week), so all children experience the measurable social, biological, economic, academic, and creative benefits of music education, the pillars of the Moral Imperative of Music Education.

Administrative Accomplishments:

Board and Advisory Board. We have assembled an effective Board and Advisory Board of music professionals, nonprofit professionals, business professionals, and academic professionals in our leadership team, with a full range of skillsets.

Strategic Plan. We refined our Mission and Vision, which resulted in a Strategic Plan that was adopted by the Board of Directors in February 2016. Following the basic plan, goals will be established as we move forward.

Business Practices:

  • All reports and official forms filed on time.
  • All donations accurately logged and acknowledged.
  • Two online auctions completed with all items promptly shipped.
  • Year-end tax letters for donors were prepared and sent to all donors by January 31, 2017.
  • Ongoing efficient responsiveness to general and specific inquiries and opportunities via email, telephone, and social media.
  • Installed a new SOHF-only phone line (312) 205-6454.


  • Individual donations: Two fundraising drives were conducted, one in August and one in December.
  • Corporate/Foundation grants:
    • Did extensive research on potential funders and sent out letters of inquiry and preliminary proposals
    • Cultivation of major funding sources, potential and actual
    • Promoted the concepts of matching grants and challenge grants

Program Accomplishments:

Over the course of 2016, the Foundation evolved and sharpened its mission focus. SOHF is the “mortar, not the bricks” and “filling in the cracks” to leverage our networks to provide music programs with the resources they need to excel. Instead of monetary grants, the Foundation provides music programs with best-practices resources and one-on-one assistance in capacity building and realizing their needs.

  • Software development, systems analysis and implementation, and developing the network of resources.
  • Preliminary Ensemble “In Concert” partners include: Make Music NOLA, Arkansas Youth Symphony Orchestra, South Bend Center for the Homeless, Seattle Music Partners, Collegiate Academies of New Orleans, Play On Philly.
  • Program still in development to build the online platform and strengthen our network of music programs and resource providers. Obviously, the biggest challenge is forging solid relationships with companies and organizations that want to donate resources.

Advocacy Toolkit. Web based and continually updated information to assist individuals and organizations for grassroots efforts to support music education.

Play Like a Champion Today, TR@ND. In September/October 2016, the Foundation visited the University of Notre Dame with the goal of raising awareness about Music Education and inspiring the historic institution to embrace a new twist on the “Play Like a Champion Today” iconic slogan, so that its meaning can be expanded to include Music Education. Some components of TR@ND:

  • High visibility public and media events, highlighting music education advocacy
  • Substantial video documentation of performances, interviews, and activities
  • Visits to local schools to promote music education
  • Collection of used musical instruments to be redistributed to children in need
  • Launch of a new music program for children at the South Bend Center for the Homeless
  • For the Kennedy Center Partners in Education Initiative, and the Foundation presented workshops on the importance of Music Education for local teachers

Special Events. The Foundation cultivates very active partnerships with various Todd Rundgren groups and music related groups, and plays an active role in events and activities for Todd fans. Supporters are also encouraged to have their own fundraising and instrument-collection events in their local communities.

Public Information/Engagement: The Foundation’s goal with social media is to provide high quality academic, inspirational, and fun content that will be liked and shared by our networks. The “hook” of all posts is always music education advocacy.

  • Website and “Music In A Word” Blog: Ongoing updates with fresh content.
  • Created a new quarterly newsletter, “Libretto,” sent to email list of over 8000.
  • Social Media: Through daily posts on Facebook and Twitter, the Foundation continually spreads awareness about the importance of Music Education in particular and music in general.
  • Full social media report follows.

Social Media Report


  • SOHF Facebook Administrators Jean Lachowicz, Ed Vigdor, Alan Meerow, Sara Stromseth-Troy, and Mark Woodin post four or five music-education or music-related posts per day.
  • Facebook “likes” increased from 3550 on December 31, 2016 to over 4700 on December 31, 2016.
  • From December 8, 2016 to January 4, 2017, SOHF’s Facebook posts reached 46,703 people, up 18 percent from the previous month. A total of 8,080 people engaged with the posts (commenting, ‘liking’ or sharing). Total video views in the same time period:  1,570, which is up 132 percent from the previous month.
  • Total ‘likes’ on the SOHF page: 4.7K (as of January 5, 2017)
  • Total followers: 4,484 (as of January 5, 2017)
  • Fan reviews of SOHF Facebook page:
    • Two recent comments (with 5-star (Excellent) reviews):
    • ‘A great organization promoting the life-changing power of youth music education.’
    • ‘SOHF is a well -run charitable organization that is providing musical education to underserved youths.’
    • A total of 19 five-star (‘Excellent’) reviews
  • Special Initiatives: During the time we were at ND, we experienced a significant spike in reaches on our FB page, roughly 220,000 over that 11 day period.


  • Sara Stromseth-Troy posts the Facebook content on SOHF’s Twitter account, and also occasionally shares mentions sent to SOHF’s Twitter by others.
  • Twitter followers increased from 670 on December 31, 2016 to over 870 on December 31, 2016.
  • As of January 5, 2017: 871 followers, 2,969 tweets, 245 likes

Google+ page

  • Sara Stromseth-Troy posts the Facebook content on SOHF’s Google+ page.
  • Google+: 33 followers, 44,077 views

SOHF YouTube Channel

  • 191 subscribers