Contacts and Hours
The CDSS office is closed until further notice, and all CDSS staff are working remotely. Email is the best way to reach us; you'll find our addresses below.
116 Pleasant St., Suite 345
Easthampton, MA 01027-2759
Our email addresses usually follow the pattern of first name followed by @cdss.org.
Most weeks, our office and store are staffed Monday–Friday, 9:30–5:00.
Meet the CDSS Team
|Katy German||Executive Director||x100|
|Robin Hayden||Director of Development||x107|
|Joanna Reiner Wilkinson||Director of Programs|
|Julie Brodnitzki||Director of Finance||x111|
|Sarah Pilzer||Director of Operations||x103|
|Anna Mach||Accounting Manager||x113|
|Linda Henry||Community Resources Manager||x105|
|Audrey Jaber (Knuth)||Membership Coordinator||Phone|
|Nicki Perez||Gifts & Database Coordinator||x104|
|Sarah Babbitt Spaeth||Programs Coordinator|
|Ben Williams||Publications, Sales, and Services Manager||x106|
|Kelsey Wells||Marketing & Communications Manager|
Executive DirectorEmail x100
A native of Berea, Kentucky, Katy grew up immersed in traditional song, dance, and music. Her first involvement with CDSS was as a camper at CDSS Family Week at Pinewoods as a teenager, where she fell in love with the work of CDSS. Over the years she’s continued to support the organization as a CDSS member, donor, camp instructor, camp program director, and board member.
Before becoming the Executive Director of CDSS in 2017, Katy spent 6 years in clinical trials data management, and 7 years in food banking, where she supervised a remote team that worked with 200 partner agencies to end hunger in western North Carolina. Today Katy is blending her previous professional experiences with her love of traditional dance, music, and song, as she leads CDSS in becoming a high-functioning remote team, rooted in a strong mission, and harnessing today’s technology to bridge geographic distance.
Outside the office you might find Katy paddle-boarding with her family, singing with others, driving her two kids around to any number of activities, working in the yard, reading novels, or planning some big gathering or adventure.
Director of DevelopmentEmail x107
Robin started dancing when she arrived at Swarthmore College in 1983, and soon after, following only a few years of teaching 4th grade, began working for CDSS as a volunteer when both she and the office (coincidentally) moved to Western MA. What began in 1987 as a volunteer Membership Secretary role grew, as CDSS grew over the next 35 years, into Robin’s deeply fulfilling work as Director of Development, in which she is grateful to be able to offer CDSS’s many friends the opportunity to support our important work through membership and generous giving.
After 22 years of residing and raising her two children in Amherst, MA, she has settled in a quiet house of her own in Greenfield. A widely-traveled English country dancer and leader, she recently retired from 25 years as the organizer of the weekly English dance in Amherst.
Joanna Reiner Wilkinson
Director of ProgramsEmail
Although many people in our community know Joanna as an excellent dance leader, what makes her perfect for this role is her expertise in nonprofit financial management and experience working with cultural organizations on data-driven program design. Joanna joins CDSS from SMU DataArts, where she evaluated cultural organization needs and designed organizational strength trainings for adult learners in the cultural community. She lives in Cheltenham, PA.
Director of FinanceEmail x111
Julie grew up in Barkhamsted, CT and after graduating from the University of Central Florida moved out to Missoula, MT for a brief period before moving back to Barkhamsted to raise her three children. She has a M.S. in Accounting from the University of Connecticut and B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Central Florida. Prior to joining CDSS, Julie worked at several nonprofit organizations in CT. She joined CDSS in December of 2019 as the Director of Finance and is responsible for the organization's finances and human resources.
When Julie is not at the office, she is enjoying the outdoors, running, skiing or hiking with family and friends. She loves traveling and was fortunate to enjoy a month-long RV trip across the United States with her family in 2018. She visited 28 states and drove 9529 miles.
Director of OperationsEmail x103
Sarah is a New England transplant from Takoma Park, MD, now living in Winooski, VT. Her first involvement with CDSS was as a young camper at Family Week. She went on to join the Governing Board as a college student, and then later in 2016, was hired to work in the office in Easthampton. Sarah currently serves as the Director of Operations, guiding the smooth functioning of the organization’s systems and processes.
Sarah grew up in a music & dance family and has been involved in the folk community her entire life. Recently, she has been developing her mellophone chops by playing with The Brass Balagan, an activist street band based in Burlington, VT. Sarah is a graduate of Oberlin College and Boston University and holds a M.A. in Marine Biology (ask her about talking to fish!). Other hobbies/interests include: board games, crochet, flower gardening, and parades.
Accounting ManagerEmail x113
Anna grew up in Canada and went to the University of Manitoba for her B.S in Accounting and Mathematics. She now lives in West Springfield, MA with her husband and two children. Prior to joining CDSS, she started and ran her own business for 5 years in Canada, and then worked for Girl Scouts of Pioneer Valley as their Accounting/Finance Manager. She joined CDSS in December 2011. As Accounting Manager, she oversees organization accounting activities and processes.
During most of her time off from CDSS, she is busy driving her two kids to their activities and taking care of her mother both remotely and in Canada. She loves traveling and learning about different cultures from the places she visits. She was fortunate enough to be able to give her children their first overseas trip to Asia last summer. She hopes she will be able to continue her travels after the kids are all grown up.
Community Resources ManagerEmail x105
Linda grew up in five southern states and first encountered contra dancing in Asheville, NC in the early 80s. As her love for dancing grew, she started and played piano for monthly dances in her community. This led her to a move to Boston and immersing herself in the dance scene there. In the early 90s she moved to western Massachusetts and joined the CDSS staff. She started a local contra dance in Amherst, MA that she co-organized for 14 years, including playing piano and leading an open band. For many years she also organized a local family dance series.
After wearing various CDSS hats over the last thirty years, Linda especially enjoys her current role as Community Resources Manager. She loves using her dance organizing experience to understand the needs of organizers and connect them to the vast resources now available through CDSS. Her work includes administering our Grants Program, hosting Web Chats, administering the Resource Portal, and offering one-on-one coaching chats. If your music, dance, or song community could use some support, feel free to contact Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Audrey Jaber (Knuth)
Membership CoordinatorEmail (619) 929-0555
Hailing from Honolulu and now living in San Diego, Audrey cut her folk teeth in the Boston area, attending Berklee College of Music and spending years exploring the thriving New England folk scene and attending her first Pinewoods camp thanks to the CDSS youth scholarship.
You probably know Audrey best as a contra and English country dance fiddle player, having traveled the country with her bands The Free Raisins, The Gaslight Tinkers, Audacious (with Larry Unger), and Wake Up Robin. As the new Membership Coordinator, she’s excited to get to know you more and pay it forward in the community.
Gifts & Database CoordinatorEmail x104
Nicki Perez is a long-time singer and dancer who grew up performing with Revels North, Village Harmony, and various other local groups in New England. After touring in Europe with Northern Harmony, she moved to Northampton, MA, where she now resides.
Nicki has worked at CDSS since 2016. Most recently, as the Gifts & Database Coordinator, she works with the Finance Team to ensure your gifts are processed quickly and correctly. Outside of work, you can find Nicki reading novels, powerlifting, and learning new languages.
Sarah Babbitt Spaeth
Sarah grew up contra dancing near the Washington-Idaho border and now lives in Burlington, VT. She was introduced to English country dance at Oberlin College, where she also studied neuroscience, biology, math, and music. She has served on the board of directors for Pinewoods Camp in Plymouth, MA, and has a professional background in customer service and data management.
Sarah plays viola and violin for English country dances, where she has found her music and dance home. She loves her garden, native bee and bird visitors, and the bike path along Lake Champlain, where she also enjoys cross-country skiing and rollerblading. She appreciates a good word game or jigsaw puzzle and wishes she had more time for weaving and pottery.
Publications, Sales, and Services ManagerEmail x106
Ben Williams grew up in the suburbs of Boston and now lives in Northampton, MA. He began working for CDSS in fall of 2018. He’s responsible for CDSS’ publications, including digital publications and the online library. He also runs the store and coordinates insurance and 501(c)(3) services for Group Affiliates.
Ben has been a life-long singer and began contra dancing in Greenfield while he attended UMass Amherst for journalism and psychology (after a brief stint in chemistry). While not singing and dancing he enjoys playing games (board, card, and otherwise), woodworking, and other craft projects. He also helps run a local meditation center and a Buddhist summer camp for children ages 10-16.
Marketing & Communications ManagerEmail
Kelsey works for CDSS from her home near Nashville, TN. As Marketing and Communications Manager, she oversees News publications, designs camp promotions, writes social media content, and much more. Kelsey works with Robin Hayden and Nicki Perez on the Development team and with anyone else in the office who needs art! She joined CDSS in 2019 after having been a primary school music teacher, a university graphic designer, and a guitar builder.
Kelsey plays fiddle and banjo in the dance bands Turnip the Beet and Silver Sail, spending many weekends traveling to dance festivals around the country. She is the founder and co-leader of the Nashville Country Dancers community open band and served as the US delegate to the world folk music project Ethno Flanders in 2017. Outside of playing music, Kelsey enjoys making crankies and hiking with her pup, Isham.
Anne lives and works in Orlando, FL. She graduated from Hampshire College in 1995 and has been designing and building websites ever since. In 2019, she joined the CDSS team as webmaster, taking care of updates, maintenance, and design.
Anne's dance career began and ended at age 4, when the ballet teacher told her parents not to bother sending her back. However, she enjoys singing with the Orlando Gay Chorus, and her time with CDSS has inspired her to dip a toe into contra dance. Her other interests include travel, cooking, needlepoint, and Star Wars.