South Bend, Indiana, December 2, 2019


The South Bend Symphony Orchestra will move into 2020 with new Executive Director Justus Zimmerman at the helm.  Zimmerman comes to South Bend from the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra where he served as Director of Marketing and Communications. While there, Zimmerman oversaw a successful digital transformation, a strategic rebrand and the launch of the critically acclaimed SESSION series.


“I am thrilled with this opportunity to work with Maestro Willis, Board President Tim Maher, and the entire SBSO team to deepen our engagement with the community in bringing even more vital music to South Bend and beyond.  I have been overwhelmed by the warmth, intelligence and dedication of the Board, musicians and staff.”  Said Zimmerman, “I think Michiana is in for a real treat as we finish our first 90 years and head toward the centennial.  My family and I couldn’t be more excited to call South Bend home and to be active participants in the City’s next chapter.”  Justus is joined in South Bend by his wife Liz, and daughter Aslyn.


“The South Bend Symphony Orchestra is on the rise, and we believe that Justus Zimmerman will help us maintain our positive momentum,” said Tim Maher, President of the South Bend Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors.  “Justus has performed at a high level in a very challenging market and equally impressed us with his person-to-person skills.  The South Bend Symphony believes that Justus’ addition to our existing team, which won the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County’s 2019 Leighton Award for Non-profit Excellence, will prove a great combination.”


South Bend Symphony’s Music Director, Alastair Willis, said, “I’m excited about Justus’ appointment as Executive Director and I’m looking forward enormously to working with him.  He brings valuable experience and perspective, and his energy, enthusiasm and optimism are contagious.  I can’t wait to see how he will help shape the South Bend Symphony Orchestra’s next dynamic chapter.”


Emeritus Board Member Bruce Bancroft, who served as chair of the committee that conducted the nationwide search, praised both the committee and Catherine French & Associates, who assisted in the search.  “I couldn’t be more pleased with the hiring of Justus Zimmerman.  The committee’s deliberate approach and attention to detail, aided by Henry Fogel and the Catherine French group, allowed us to conduct a comprehensive nationwide search and find the right person for the job.  I look forward to working with Justus as our new Executive Director.”





About the SBSO


Currently in its 87th season, the South Bend Symphony Orchestra has recently concluded a strategic planning process and is embarking on the implementation of its five-year strategic plan.  In addition to being recognized by the National Endowment for the Arts and other state and local arts funding organizations, the SBSO is the recipient of the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County’s 2019 Leighton Award for Nonprofit Excellence, which recognizes the best-run nonprofit organization in St. Joseph County, Indiana.