In April 2010, Donald C. Siekmann was elected president of the Society for the Preservation of Music Hall (SPMH). Mr. Siekmann succeeded Norma Petersen, who had been president of the board since 2004.
Mr. Siekmann is a business and tax consultant who retired as regional managing partner of Arthur Andersen in 1997 after 37 years with the company. Under his leadership, the Ohio region experienced unprecedented growth. He has been an enthusiastic community volunteer for many years and served as a board member of a number of arts organizations including the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Arts Association, Cincinnati Theatrical Association, and the Cincinnati Ballet.
''I've known Don and Linda Siekmann since they came to Cincinnati in 1971,'' said Norma Petersen. ''From his leadership particularly as the first president of the Greater Cincinnati Arts & Education Center, and from his personal devotion to the arts, I'm thrilled he has agreed to serve as SPMH president and I will support him in any way possible.''
Mrs. Petersen was a signatory to the founding of SPMH. Under her leadership, the organization has made significant contributions toward the preservation of and education about Music Hall, including the production of the award-winning documentary Music Hall: Cincinnati Finds Its Voice and the renovation of the Albee Mighty Wurlitzer theatre organ and its installation in Music Hall's ballroom.
''It's wonderful to see the devotion people have, both here and around the country, for Music Hall,'' she said. ''Knowing the value and mission of SPMH, and the strength and dedication of the SPMH board of directors - they are truly a working board - it is exciting to see all we've accomplished.''
Don Siekmann took over as president during a time of great challenge for arts organizations in general, and Music Hall in particular, as plans began for extensive refurbishment for the 132-year old structure.
Along with other arts organizations, SPMH was a beneficiary of Patricia Corbett's estate. Mrs. Corbett, along with her husband J. Ralph, had been instrumental in preserving Music Hall, starting in the 1960s with a generous grant for a major, multi-year renovation of the structure. Mrs. Corbett's love of Music Hall also prompted her to help create SPMH in the early 1990s.
''There's so much happening and it's exciting to be president of SPMH,'' Mr. Siekmann said. ''SPMH has done a great job since its inception and under Norma's leadership, and the generous gift from Mrs. Corbett will allow us to do even more.''