Artistic Director & President/CEO
Joel Harrison has been President/CEO of the APA since 2008 and Artistic Director of the APA since 2001. He was previously a faculty member at Davidson College in North Carolina and at Mississippi State University, where he was also director of the Mississippi Piano Showcase and a Touring Artist for the Mississippi Arts Commission. His duties at APA include the oversight of all artistic programs, most especially the Classical and Jazz Fellowship Awards, relationships with collaborative organizations, strategic planning, staff development and oversight, Board communications, community and external relationships, fundraising, and representing APA to a national and international constituency.
Harrison holds degrees from the University of North Carolina, Indiana University and Northwestern University, in addition to studies in Switzerland, Italy and Austria. Dr. Harrison has served on local, regional and national arts committees and boards, been a jury member for international piano competitions, and since 2003 has toured frequently as a cultural envoy of the United States Department of State Cultural Programs Division in Asia, the Middle East, the Caucasus and Northern Africa, accompanied by Classical or Jazz Fellows. He is a recipient of the 2010 Paderewski Award for distinguished contributions to society and culture, given at the Embassy of Poland in Washington, DC. He occasionally reviews submissions for Indiana University Press, and has served as a music consultant for Sky Magazine of Delta Airlines. In addition to music, he pursues an interest in contemporary art and architecture.
Vice President of Development
Dr. Kathleen Spears, a Pennsylvania native, has more than twelve years of experience in non-profit administration across a number of settings including healthcare and arts & culture. Prior to APA, she served as President and CEO of The Madame Walker Theatre Center in Indianapolis, with previous leadership at not-for-profits in Memphis and Dallas. Her distinguished contributions have been recognized in the media as "50 Women Who Make a Difference" in Memphis Woman Magazine, "40 Under 40" (2012) in the Indianapolis Business Journal, and "A Woman to Know" in The Indianapolis Star. At APA she oversees all aspects of fundraising and as a senior staff member works collaboratively with the President/CEO and Artistic Director to engage a national constituency. She holds graduate degrees from Texas Woman's University and a BA from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Kim Lewis has been employed at the American Pianists Association since 2004 and is currently the General Manager. She graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Music Theatre from Baldwin-Wallace College in 1995 and with a Master of Arts in Theatre from Northwestern University in 2002.
Prior to moving to Indianapolis, Ms. Lewis was the Community Arts and Education Coordinator for Arts Council Lake Erie West in Ohio as well as an AmeriCorps member in Chicago. Ms. Lewis actively volunteers with organizations such as Giving Sum and Indy Hub.
Milner Fuller holds an M.A. in Musicology from Indiana University and a B.A. in Music from Denison University. Milner joined the American Pianists Association in January of 2013 as a Development Officer.
Prior to his work with the APA, Mr. Fuller served as the Tyler Young Artist Program Manager at Opera on the James in Lynchburg, VA, and taught chamber music at Virginia Episcopal School. He currently volunteers with the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir.
Director of Marketing
Lee Clifford calls Indianapolis his hometown, having left for small stints in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; Bloomington, Indiana; and Rouen, France. He holds degrees in business and international studies from Indiana University and is perpetually learning new things. Lee is a creative marketer with broad industry experience and great passion for the arts. Outside of the American Pianists Association, his philanthropic pursuits include volunteering for Carmel Dads Club and Bicycles for Humanity as well as supporting other arts organizations through memberships and event attendance. Lee loves the music made daily in his home by his wife (piano) and two sons (piano, clarinet and trombone).
Daniel McCullough was born in Syracuse, New York, but has lived in Indianapolis since he was two, so it's no wonder he considers himself a native Hoosier. He graduated from Butler University with a BA in both Digital Media Production and ART + Design. While production, video editing, and voice acting are his primary passions, Daniel also has an extensive music background. He studied string bass from middle school all through his time at Butler, where he studying under world-renowned classical bassist David Murry. Along the way Daniel also studied and performed jazz/electric bass and marching bass drum, the latter of which he played in the Butler University Marching Band. It was thanks to the connection through Butler that he first heard about the American Pianists Association and began working part-time back in 2012. He shot and edited the majority of YouTube videos for the 2012-2013 Classical Awards and 2014-2015 Jazz Awards.
Daniel has worked with different music groups in the past, playing upright bass for Butler's vocal ensemble "Jordan Jazz," where they played at international schools in Honk Kong and Brazil; performing in pit bands for Footlite Musicals, who have put on productions of "Batboy," "RENT," and "The Rocky Horror Show;" and is currently playing marching bass drum for an energetic brass band called The Circle City Sidewalk Stompers Clown Band.