Kathy Baker is happy to be re-joining The Raleigh Ringers for a third year. Because she could read music, at the age of 14 Kathy was recruited to play in her church handbell choir and hasn’t stopped playing since. Now living in Burlington, Kathy also plays bells for First United Methodist Church in Graham and works in Institutional Research for UNC Greensboro, which leaves little time for much else. Her husband, Tim, and daughter, Amanda, are supportive of her ringing, though the cat, Amadeus, remains skeptical.
Ruth Brown holds her Bachelor of Music from the University of Texas at Dallas, and graduate studies in Flute Performance and Pedagogy from Meredith College. She began playing handbells in 1995 after watching The Raleigh Ringers perform. She teaches private music lessons and directs church handbell choirs when she is not crunching numbers at a local bank. Ruth and her husband, David, have been blessed with two daughters, two sons-in-law, and six grandchildren. She currently serves as treasurer for The Raleigh Ringers.
Keith Burt was born in New Jersey but really doesn’t remember it since he lived most of his life in Florida. He was drafted into handbells by a former piano teacher with the words many ringers know, “Just try it for one rehearsal!”, and has been playing handbells ever since. Keith studied piano at the University of Central Florida and was involved with handbell choirs along the way, either playing or directing. Fortunately for The Raleigh Ringers, Keith enjoys transcribing and arranging music for handbells. He currently works at Martin Architectural Products and fills his spare time with his great loves, movies and heavy metal.
Cameron Carter’s musical journey began at four when his parents needed a place for him to stay while his older brother, Jay, was in violin lessons. The answer was to place them in the same place at roughly the same time. Cameron stumbled on the tiny, yet also large, world of handbells five years ago as Jay mentioned that it may be something he would enjoy, prompting Cameron to join the Jubilate Choir at Fairlington UMC and Virginia Bronze in Alexandria, Virginia. He is now the lone Carter brother remaining in The Raleigh Ringers, and is excited for his second year.
Angie Chiatello comes to us from California via Purdue University, where she played their famous Shaker Chimes as a member of the university's Handbell Choir. Angie works in marketing for an engineering firm, does freelance design work, and, in her spare time, bakes and decorates sugar cookies. She also loves to read and travel, having visited all but six of the United States.
Ellen Daniels began her love of music early. When she was only two years old, she was caught imitating her older sister and picking out Für Elise on the piano. Her precociousness led to piano lessons of her own and later, Ellen sang in school chorus groups and church choirs. Then it happened – her church got a set of handbells and started a youth bell choir. She was hooked. In her third year with The Raleigh Ringers, Ellen is living out her dream. When not playing or directing handbells, she enjoys traveling, ballroom dancing, and competing in Scottish Highland dancing.
Erin Glendening comes to us from Pella, Iowa, via Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Erin followed in her siblings’ footsteps and began ringing bells at the age of 12. The pursuit of a master’s degree took Erin to Pittsburgh, where she spent several years directing an intergenerational handbell choir and a children’s chime choir at Shadyside Presbyterian Church, while also ringing with the Chapel Bells at Mt. Lebanon UMC. Now Erin enjoys ringing with the Bells of Saint Andrews and directing the children’s chime choirs at Saint Andrews Presbyterian Church. When not ringing, Erin works as a computer geek. Erin enjoys solo ringing, cross-stitching, knitting, crocheting, reading, and watching movies. Erin is the president of The Raleigh Ringers.
Sandra Hopson was born in Illinois and grew up in the Washington, D.C., area. She began ringing at the age of ten and performed with the Carol and Wesleyan Ringers of St. Matthews UMC, Annandale, Virginia, directed by Nancy Cappel. Sandy and her husband James are the parents of two daughters, Emily and Megan. Sandy is a charter member of The Raleigh Ringers.
Lauren Housley began ringing at the age of 12 at the First Presbyterian Church of Ambler, PA, and carried her love of ringing into her university career, joining the Rooke Chapel Ringers of Bucknell University. Since graduation, she has performed with other community handbell groups, and is now in her second season with The Raleigh Ringers. When not ringing handbells, Lauren can be found up to her knees in any area creek, studying aquatic insects for the state of North Carolina; or knitting, crocheting, or spinning.
Allison Keisler is originally from Hickory, North Carolina, and teaches chorus and handbells at Bandys High School in Catawba County. Her love of handbells started at the age of 9 in her church bell choir, which she later directed for 15 years. She has been a member and assistant conductor of several professional handbell groups in the Hickory and Charlotte areas. Allison has four beautiful children ranging in age from 9 to 13 who all enjoy either playing piano, ringing bells, singing, or at least listening to music! She enjoys being active with her children and taking them on new adventures. This year, Allison completed her first half marathon (yes, 13.1 miles!) with her fiancée (and fellow ringer) Kristin, and is proud to say that they didn’t finish last!
Cindy Massey, one of Cary’s earliest “Yankee transplants,” managed to turn her toddler virtuosity at the Fisher-Price Xylophone and subsequent love of music into the ringing adventure of a lifetime in 1990 – as a charter member of The Raleigh Ringers! In the past, when she wasn’t working at a quilt shop, ringing, sewing, or shopping, Cindy claimed to enjoy helping husband Phil care for the pecan trees and beehives on their Nuts for Nuts farm. Forget that. Now she’s providing loving care for her 2017 Mother’s Day gift (grandson Hudson!) while eagerly anticipating the arrival of Hudson's sister this July (and is determined to find time to sew!)
Kristin Murphy, a native of Virginia Beach, recently relocated to North Carolina to continue her fifth year with The Raleigh Ringers. Kristin started ringing as a child with Virginia Beach UMC and continued ringing through college and pharmacy school with Williamsburg United Methodist Church, Virginia Handbell Consort, James River Ringers, and Virginia Bronze. When she is not ringing, Kristin works as the Medication Safety Officer for UNC Hospitals. She, her two daughters, Elizabeth (age 6) and Meredith (age 3), and fiancée (and fellow ringer) Allison enjoy food truck rallies, Starbucks runs, and burning all those calories at the local trampoline park. Kristin is the secretary for The Raleigh Ringers.
Cathy Rowe comes to Raleigh from Springfield, Illinois, where she played with the community group Bells in Motion for 13 years. Piano lessons at the age of six started her love of music, and a church donation of three octaves of bells by her parents started her love of handbells in high school. Cathy enjoys ringing at the annual handbell event Distinctly Bronze and she is currently working as a Programmer/Analyst for Measurement, Inc. in Durham.
Sarah Sheffield is excited to be in her third year with The Raleigh Ringers! Sarah's love of handbells began in 1994 when she was recruited to play in her church's choir and now takes every chance she can to ring. Like ringing with Queen City Ringers, Distinctly Bronze East, and anyone who needs a sub. Outside of ringing (there's a life outside of bells?), Sarah likes to read, cross stitch, read, go to the movies, and read. Sarah has a music education degree (French Horn), though works for an insurance agency during the day. She and her husband Milton (who also rings) live in Charlotte.
Eric Vandermeyden is thrilled to be starting his first year with The Raleigh Ringers. He began ringing handbells at age nine in his home church in Summerville, South Carolina. He grew more interested in bells and began attending the Montreat Worship and Music Conference, where he was often in the advanced choir. He is a former ringer of both Palmetto Bronze and Charlotte Bronze. In addition to bells, he also plays piano and orchestra percussion. Eric earned his Bachelor's degree in accounting from Charleston Southern University and a Master's degree in accounting from UNC Wilmington. He currently works as an accountant with the North Carolina Department of Transportation.
Ann Lowe Vodicka, music librarian for The Raleigh Ringers, and Granny to Eli, is excited to be in her 23rd year with the group. Ann Lowe is a retired registered pediatric nurse and an avid NC State fan. She enjoys spending time with her four children at Lake Gaston, where she fishes, hosts stick parties, and often wins at a highly competitive game of Contract Rummy. Her spare time is spent volunteering, playing with her six cats and her dog, Ozzie, and practicing her highly entertaining song and dance rendition of “The Three Bears.” She thanks Jason, Derek, Mary, Ryan, Jeanne, Aaron, Ann, and Frank for their continued love and support.
Doug White, who was born the same year The Raleigh Ringers formed, began ringing handbells 14 years ago in his hometown of Louisburg, North Carolina. When not ringing, he enjoys skimming random articles on Wikipedia, playing Cards Against Humanity, and inflicting terrible puns on innocent bystanders. Doug is happy to get a great workout loading the truck and ringing bass bells in his sixth year with the group.
Former Members of The Raleigh Ringers
Stephanie (Morgan) Alm
Melissa (Borchardt) Brinson
Crystal (Moran) Coen
Laura (Ellwein) Fix
Ann (Wheeler) Grigg
Amy (Dale) Harris
Lisa (Brande) Harris
Carla (Batchelor) Hinton
Elaine (Bodisco Massink) Hofmann
Lisa Ann Kelder
Paula (Coss) Kolarov
Wendy (Burger) Pace
Brenda (Byrd) Powell
Karen (Copeland) Rhew
Diane van Dijk
Ellen (Havens) Wentz