About us

Mount Diablo Music Education Foundation is a non-profit, tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) public charity established in 2009. We are an independent Foundation that works closely with, but is separate from the Mount Diablo Unified School District. MDMEF is administered by an all-volunteer board representing all 5 high schools in the District and their feeder schools.

Our Mission: MDMEF is dedicated to ensuring all students in the Mount Diablo Unified School District have equal access to a quality Music Education.

To achieve this mission, MDMEF has established the following goals:

  • Create and facilitate music education opportunities throughout the Mount Diablo Unified School District to maximize student participation, starting at the elementary schools and continuing through middle and high school.
  • Increase community awareness about the importance of music education, and engage the schools and community to support music education.
  • Secure sources of funding for music-related events and programs.

Joan Miller – President

Joan has entertained audiences and instructed students in the Bay Area as an actress, theatre producer, choir director, piano/voice teacher, composer and arranger. She is a member of the Music Teachers’ Association of California and is a founding officer of MDMEF. Joan is an accomplished pianist who has been honored to play at Carnegie Hall and in 2014, received the Jefferson Award for her work with MDMEF.

William Patterson – Vice President

William currently owns a web development business but was a full time professional musician in his younger years. He owes his musical life to the teaching and involvement of music available in Mt. Diablo schools and feels strongly about paying it forward.

Bonnie Shea – Secretary

Bonnie joined Mt. Diablo Unified School District in 2017 as an Elementary General Music Teacher, K-5. She has served as the lead teacher for her team and as a member of the VAPA Leadership Committee for the district. Her passion is elementary music, teaching the Core Arts Standards, and inspiring a love of making music starting with our youngest students in TK and K. Her after-school performing ensembles are a Chorus and an Orff Ensemble called “Mallet Madness”, both made up of 3rd – 5th-grade students. Bonnie joined MDMEF in 2021, with a commitment to bringing more music opportunities to the students of Mt. Diablo USD.

Nicholas De La Riva – Member

Nicholas holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from San Diego State University, where he studied trumpet under John Wilds and conducting under Dr. Shannon Kitelinger. As the Oak Grove Middle School Instrumental Music Director, he teaches band, orchestra, and choir classes. He also has experience instructing marching band, directing show choir band, and working as a music assistant at the La Jolla Playhouse. His professional affiliations include the California Music Educators Association and The National Association for Music Education.

Mitchell White – Member

Mitchell White is a music educator and researcher passionate about advocating for robust music programs in our Bay Area high schools. Currently a band director at College Park High School in addition to music faculty at Saint Mary’s College of California, he directs both bands and orchestras that travel and perform constantly throughout the school year. Originally from San Diego, Mitchell currently lives in San Francisco where he enjoys the rich music scene (SF Jazz is a personal favorite) and opportunities to drive around scenic Northern California.

Mitchell White holds a Bachelor of Music degree in saxophone performance from the University of Southern California (USC), a Master’s degree in music education from Chapman University, and will be graduating from Saint Mary’s College of California (SMC) with his doctorate (Ed.D) in educational leadership in May 2024. Coincidentally, his dissertation investigates the experiences of music educators and their music programs within the secondary curriculum.

Interested in joining our Board?
Please fill out the forms below and send to Contact@MDMEF.org.

MDMEF Board Member Questionnaire

MDMEF Conflict Disclosure