Portland, OR – Portland Columbia Symphony (PCSO) announced today that after nearly three years as executive director, Rebekah Phillips will step down effective January 27, 2022 to pursue new opportunities, returning to the field of marketing full-time.

During her tenure, Phillips has overseen the strategic growth of the organization, adding infrastructure, increasing resource capacity, and growing community engagement. While leading PCSO through the pandemic, she championed the creative talents and versatility of the region’s freelance professional musicians, bringing to fruition PCSO’s enormously successful “Meet the Instruments” program, instating an equitable pay scale, and increasing the number of paid performance opportunities in a season.

“Rebekah has been a wonderful creative partner and a powerful advocate and asset for our orchestra and its members,” shared Music Director Steven Byess. “She has provided great vision and ingenuity and has engaged our patrons and community during a very challenging time of the pandemic. I am deeply grateful for her leadership and efforts, and I wish her success in this new chapter of her life.”

“A strong and collaborative leader, Rebekah has steadfastly directed PCSO through an unprecedented period of extensive change and daunting challenges, unleashing creativity and transforming the organization during her tenure as Executive Director,” stated Board President Mary J. Mayer. “We are extremely fortunate to have had this dynamic superstar guiding our organization for nearly three years. She leaves us in a much stronger position than when she arrived. As much as we will miss her, we wish her the best in her future endeavors.”

Building off these many successes and Phillips’ inspirational leadership, the PCSO Board of Directors will begin a search for her successor immediately. However, until that permanent replacement can be found, the PCSO Board, Music Director, and staff are currently designing and implementing a Transition Plan which includes the hiring of an Interim Executive Director.