2016-17 Board of Directors

Meagan Cihlar, President

Meagan moved to Merrill in 2005 and currently works for GI Associates as a Medical Records Technician.  She enjoys playing music in a number of area groups and gardening.  Board member since 2004. 

Sarah Litzer, Vice President

Sarah has lived all over the Midwest, settling in Merrill.  She enjoys an impossible variety of music, and has a diverse musical background.  She works as a German translator, working primarily with historical documents.  Board member since 2012.

Chad Premeau, Secretary 

Formerly a music educator in the Merrill area and a theater technician at the Performing Arts Foundation, Chad is currently the Concert Band Director and Applied Brass Instructor at UW-Marathon County in Wausau.  Board Secretary since at least 1988. Board member since 1983.

Richard Mamer, Treasurer

Richard is the owner/operator of a thriving accounting business in downtown Merrill.  He is an avid traveler and outdoor enthusiast.  Board Treasurer since at least 1988.  Board Member since at least 1983.

Helene Ader  

Helene has been part of the Merrill music scene for over 50 years and was choral director at Merrill High School twice, spending the in-between years raising two daughters and teaching private voice lessons.  She served as president of the board three times, and was the second chair of the Patron Drive committee—leading the group's fundraising efforts for 12 years.  Board member since the 1970's. (Before 1975)

Abe Akey

Abe is a junior at Merrill High School, and is a student member.  Board member since 2016.

Jim Becker

Jim lives in Weston with his wife Natalie, and has three grown children. He has worked as a pharmacist in Merrill for the last 12 years, and can currently be found at Young's Drug Store in Merrill.  In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, biking, camping and reading, and when the snow flies partakes in skiing and snowshoeing. Board member since 2015.

James Bjorklund

The other Jim B on the board.  Has been seen fighting windmills as Don Miguel de Cervantes.  Board member since 2012.

Mark Czech

Mark and his wife Dawn have lived in the Town of Hamburg since 1988. Their family currently consists of three adult boys and two daughters-in-law. He has been employed at Wausau Financial Systems for 12 years. He enjoys family, running, the outdoors, sports, and music. Board member since 2015.

Sally Hostvedt

Board member since before 1975.

Barb Plonsky-Koehler

Barb was born and raised in California, and moved to Wisconsin to go to nursing school. While at school, she met her husband—who is from Merrill—and has lived here ever since.  She currently works as a  nurse at Lincoln Hills School.  She enjoys meeting and working with people, and enjoys a wide variety of music—especially live performances.  "Every day is a gift."  Board member since 2011.

Cindy Koehler 

Cindy is a longtime resident of the Merrill area.  She is active on the Merrill music scene, involving herself with many different types of musical groups, and she met her husband with the Merrill Marching Band.  She can be found in the Physical Therapy Department at Marshfield Clinic—Merrill Center.  She enjoys gardening, spray painting her lawn, cooking, and taking care of her tropical fish, Carl.  Board Member since 2007. 

Katie Livingston

Katie is a life long resident of Merrill.  She has a private music studio, offering piano lessons to children and adults for 37 years.  She has served as a WMTA district auditions chair and adjudicator for piano competitions around the state for the past 29 years.  She loves nature, gardening and taking long walks with her silver goldendoodle.  She is proud to be a part of MACA and the Merrill community.  Board Member since 2000.

Ruth Ann Markewycz

Ruth Ann worked in Madison in banking and title insurance.  Now, retired with her husband Yurgen, she moved back to her hometown of Merrill and couldn't be happier to be here. Board member since 2013.

Maggie Marquis

Dee Olsen

Dee is the Executive Director of the Merrill Area United Way.  Board member since 2016.

William Opsahl

Will is currently a junior at Merrill High School, and is a student member.  Board member since 2016.

Jean Ravn

Jean and her husband Mike are life long residents of Merrill, and have raised 4 daughters.  Jean formerly worked for Church Mutual Insurance Company for 38 years.  She enjoys walking, traveling, music, theater and is a member of Trinity Lutheran Church.  She actively volunteers in the community in many areas.  Board member since ...

Mark Riebe

Mark works for Country Financial Insurance in Merrill, WI.  Board member since

Craig Rezin  

Craig and his wife Sharon have lived in the Merrill area since 1984, raising two children.  He is self employed at Rezin Optical LLC as a Certified Optician and enjoys motorcycling and various other sporting activities, along with several different musical genres.  Board member since 2011.

Diane Schult

Board member since 2016.

Stacy Stevens

Board member since 2010.

Maxine Tlusty

Maxine is proud to serve on the MACA Board of Directors!  She lives in Merrill with her husband, Jay, and daughter, Michelle.  She enjoys music, playing guitar and violin, and works part time at Kate Goodrich Elementary School.  In her free time, she enjoys her pets and spending time with her family.  Board member since 2008. 

Marilyn Wright

Marilyn moved to Merrill with husband Gary in 1966, raising a family and working as a homemaker.  She enjoys reading and gardening, and is a very enthusiastic fan of UW–Madison football and basketball.  She is thrilled to be a long-time part of an organization that provides something worthwhile to our community.  Board member since 1975 or 1976.

Standing Committees

Membership, Chaired by Meagan Cihlar

Coordinates and executes the sale of annual memberships to new and returning members.  The membership committee begins the cycle by mailing the membership fliers and collects dues in exchange for the annual membership cards.  Typically a year-round-working-committee, Membership involves a lot of hands-on work with mailings as well as calls out to members.

Patron Drive, Chaired by Jean Ravn and Ruth Ann Markewycz

The Patron Drive committee works to solicit contributions from businesses in the community, members of MACA as well as members of the general public.  Funds collected during the Patron Drive go toward funding talent/artists/performers for the following season.

Publicity, Chaired by Jim Becker and Cindy Koehler

Promotion of Concert Association through press releases, ads and posters throughout Merrill and the surrounding areas.  Committee Duties: Draft and distribute press releases with photos for all concerts.  Develop and execute ads for membership drive.  Distribute posters for all concerts and season concert series.  Explore other promotional avenues as applicable.

Program & Usher, Chaired by Katie Livingston

Offers a great opportunity to greet the public and welcome everyone to our fine facilities for a night of musical entertainment.  We hear many great comments regarding the quality and diversity of programs.  Suggestions from members are always welcome and serve as a barometer for future programs.

Stage & Artist, Chaired by Chad Premeau

Coordinates and assists our performers before, during and after the performances.

Hospitality, Chaired by Barb Plonsky-Koehler and Maggie Marquis

The goal of the Hospitality Committee is to make the artists feel welcome by providing snacks and/or meals prior to performances.  Artists make this requests for food and beverages in writing in advance of the concert date and members of the committee shop, prepare the items, set the food up and welcome the artists.  Hospitality also provides for MACA board/artist receptions—pleasant social gatherings each where the artists are invited to a hors d'oeuvres or dessert buffet after their concert.

Nominating, Chaired by Katie Livingston

Reaches out to the public and seeks members of the community with a sincere interest in music and its impact on our lives, no matter what age. We strive to bring new people on board with fresh ideas, enthusiasm and a willingness to be involved in the behind the scenes work required to providing great entertainment for our community and beyond. 

Audit, Chaired by Marilyn Wright

Meets with Board Treasurer once a year to verify and approve of records.

Ad-Hoc Committees

Lobby Sales, Chaired by Barb Plonsky-Koehler

Responsible for assisting our concert series with the sale of CDs, shirts, etc during intermission and following the concerts.  We collect 10% of the sales for our coffers which goes in the general fund.

Historical Archive, Chaired by Sally Hostvedt

Committee development in process!  Goal of committee: capture the history of MACA's development as told by our long-standing board members.