Christopher B. L. Woodside, Executive Director

Christopher Woodside
Photo: John Boal for Mark Finkenstaedt

Christopher B.L. Woodside is the Executive Director of the National Association for Music Education. Prior to his hiring as Executive Director, Chris served NAfME for over a decade in a variety of roles. Most recently as Interim Executive Director, Chris guided NAfME through the height of the COVID-19 global pandemic, working to ensure financial stability and mission-driven activity reflective of the needs of music educators serving students in a constantly evolving landscape.

Chris has contributed extensively to NAfME public policy and advocacy achievements, helping grow the association’s advocacy footprint through state-level capacity building, creation of the Music Education Policy Roundtable, expansion of the NAfME Hill Day advocacy event, and via legislative and regulatory lobbying, including efforts to ensure the inclusion of music-specific provisions in federal education law. In 2016, Chris received the honor of Lowell Mason Fellow in recognition of his advocacy work on behalf of the profession.

Prior to his time with NAfME, Chris was the Policy Coordinator for The Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. Chris also served on the legislative staff of a member of the U.S. House of Representatives and has worked on several political campaigns. Chris received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Miami University.

Chris comes from a family of arts educators and advocates. He believes strongly in the mission of NAfME and has a deep passion for the work of expanding equitable access to music education. He is a spouse, the father of two young (musical) children, and a proud resident of the greater Washington (D.C.) Metropolitan Area.