League’s Heather Noonan recognized for arts advocacy work during pandemic as one of Musical America’s Top 30 Professionals

Posted on: December 7, 2021

“Heather Noonan, the League of American Orchestras’ longtime advocate in Washington, D.C., has been an indispensable guide through the maze of federal COVID-related emergency funding initiatives, most of which she was instrumental in convincing Congress to pass,” writes John Fleming in Musical America’s Top 30 Professionals of the Year report on Tuesday (12/7). “These included the SBA Paycheck Protection Program, Shuttered Venues Operating Grants, and the IRS Employee Retention Tax Credits program…. Noonan’s efforts for the League … provided a lifeline … at a time when earned income vanished…. ‘Our goal was to make sure that the arts were recognized and eligible,” said Noonan, who credits League colleague Najean Lee as her invaluable partner in representing orchestras on Capitol Hill…. Beginning on March 13, 2020, … the job was 24/7 when pressure was on the influence the crafting of bills…. Once passed into law, it was Noonan’s job to explain to the League’s 700 orchestra members what their options were … so they could apply for relief.” League of American Orchestras board member Jennifer Koh and professionals from League-member orchestras were also featured in the report. The Professionals of the Year report cites the work of 30 musicians, executives, and managers in the classical music industry.