Artistic and Music Director Suzanne Mallare Acton

Known for her "supple, distinctive musical direction," conductor Suzanne Mallare Acton continues to earn respect and admiration for her performances in both the concert hall and the opera stage. From Handel’s “Messiah” to contemporary jazz, she is recognized for her versatility and dynamic style.

As long-term chorus master of the Michigan Opera Theatre, Ms. Acton has worked on over 125 productions in seven different languages with world-renowned artists Joan Sutherland, Luciano Pavarotti, Cleo Laine and many more.

In 1996, Ms. Acton was appointed artistic/music director of Rackham Choir. In her mission to promote choral music in the community, she has programmed and conducted many works including Karl Jenkins’ “The Armed Man: A Mass for Peace” with the premier of an original film “The Armed Boy” commissioned by RC at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts.

Ms. Acton has been recognized by Corp! Magazine as one of Michigan’s 95 Most Powerful Women. Under her leadership, Rackham Choir was awarded the prestigious 2008 Governor's Award for outstanding contributions to Arts and Culture in Michigan. She was recognized by Corp! Magazine as one of Michigan’s 85 Most Powerful Woman. In 2014, she was selected as an honoree of WJR’s 2014 Class of Women Who Lead.

Accompanist and Music Coach Joseph Jackson

Joseph Jackson is the resident Accompanist of Rackham Choir. He also plays an integral role working with the students in the Internship Program.

He currently serves as the Organist/Music Associate of the First Presbyterian Church of Royal Oak, accompanist for the Michigan Opera Theater Children's Chorus, is a Michigan Opera Theater touring artist, and accompanist for the Berkley High School Choirs. His prior positions include Music Director at several historical churches including The First Presbyterian Church of Detroit and the First Presbyterian Church of Philadelphia.

Mr Jackson is a frequent recitalist and accompanist throughout the country. His broadcast credits include National Public Radio's The First Art and Pipedreams. His solo recording Philadelphia Gothic appears on the label DTR and his performance of the Howard Hansen Organ Concerto is available on the Naxos label.

Executive Board

  • Charles Arnett
    RC Board President, Music Director
  • Emily Eichenhorn
    RC Board Vice-President, Attorney
  • Jeff Fritz
    RC Board Treasurer, Tax Accountant, CPA, MST, MBA
  • Wendy Keebler
    RC Board Secretary, Freelance Editor
  • Lori Weatherwax
    RC Class A Chorus Representative, Skilled Trades Leader

Board of Members 2018- 2019

  • Suzanne Mallare Acton
    RC Artistic and Music Director, Assistant Music Director, Chorus Master, Michigan Opera Theatre
  • Patricia Minnick
    RC Choir Manager, Coordinator, Music Activities, Schoolcraft College
  • Victoria Bigelow, PhD
    RC Education Coordinator, Music Educator & Education Researcher, University of Michigan
  • Bud Uhl
    Fundraising Professional, CFRM
  • Emily Eichenhorn
  • Susan A. Fox
    Artist and retired attorney
  • Clarence Jones
    Workers Compensation Manager, Detroit Public Schools
  • Ray Litt
    Vice Chairman, Cass Tech Alumni Association
  • Gregory Ashe
    Senior Financial Aid Outreach Advisor
  • Wendy Keebler
    Freelance Editor
  • Victoria Morgan
    Franchise Business Consultant
  • Jeff Fritz
    Tax Accountant, CPA, MST, MBA
  • Anna Giammarco
    MBA, Small Business Advisor
  • Laverne Schenk
    President, Dynamic Appraisal Service Inc.
  • Lori Weatherwax
    Ford Motor Co. Skilled Trades Leader; Class A Chorus Rep.
  • Charles Arnett
    Music Director


  • Artistic and Music Director
    Suzanne Mallare Acton
  • Accompanist and Music Coach
    Joseph Jackson
  • Choir Manager
    Patricia Minnick
  • Education Coordinator
    Victoria Bigelow, PhD

The 2018 - 2019 Choir

  • Maureen Abele
  • Beth Adams
  • Emily Eichenhom
  • Linda Hagopian
  • Wendy Keebler
  • Andrea Koueiter
  • Brittanny Lawler
  • Rebecca Parker
  • Joanna Percy
  • Patricia Stewart
  • Maggie Turner
  • Lori Weatherwax
  • Fran Bachmann
  • Susan A. Fox
  • Yvonne Friday
  • Anna Giammarco
  • Kimberly Henderson
  • Victoria Isabell
  • Crystal Iverson
  • Anne Maters
  • Patricia Minnick
  • Nancy Nelson
  • Deb Nero
  • Sarah Piper
  • Kennedy Robinson, high school intern
  • Janna Roop
  • Linda Van Buren
  • Charlie Arnett
  • Simone Bonino
  • Zicheng Cui
  • Andy Dobry
  • Drew Gale
  • Gary Hasley
  • Paul Kellerman
  • Gary Lindell
  • Scott Maggart
  • Paolo Pacheco
  • Steven P. Pejuan
  • Laverne Schenk
  • Alan Sebastian
  • David Twigg
  • Bud Uhl
  • Jack Walpuck
  • Jonathan Wang
  • Will Yeats
  • Ashley Baylor
  • Victoria Bigelow
  • Ryan Blankenburg, high school intern
  • Lara Casai
  • Deanna Christy
  • Jennifer Clancy
  • Hannah Cressman
  • Lauren Fisher
  • Emily Gay
  • Avital Granot
  • Amy Guffey
  • Kelly Jakse
  • Rachel Miltimore, high school intern
  • Judith Szefi
  • Andrea Tawil
  • Diana Turner
  • Ashley Wester
  • Andrea Ylipoti
  • Kathy Boettcher
  • Natalie Corrigan, high school intern
  • Joan Crawford
  • Beth Deuel
  • Michelle Drummond
  • Meli Laurence
  • Anne Marie Viviano-Poltorak
  • Kate Pierce
  • Kim Witten
  • Gregory Ashe
  • Alex Bartley-Livingston, high school intern
  • MIchael Boettcher
  • Joseph Dluzniewski
  • Jeff Fritz
  • Richard Jackson
  • Chris Jones
  • Jeff Krueger
  • Jim Moore
  • Aditya Nambiar
  • Bill Steiner
  • Brett Thompson
  • Harry Williams Jr.
  • Alana Tucker