“The fulfillment I get from being able to see the joy in my children as they build a lifelong love affair with music is beyond any words I can share with you.”
⸺JeNyce Boolton, Chicago Philharmonic Board Director and U.S. Bank Midwest Region Manager for Community Affairs and Engagement
Image above: Volunteer U.S. Bank employees pose with Chicago Philharmonic staff and musicians at a Side by Side with the Chicago Philharmonic concert at Pottawatomie Park in 2019.
At Chicago Philharmonic, our core mission is to grow our music community as Chicago’s most dynamic orchestra. An important part of that mission is nurturing the next generation of musicians and arts patrons. Thanks to U.S. Bank, our longtime sponsor, our community engagement programs have thrived.
Side by Side with the Chicago Philharmonic, presented through the Chicago Park District’s “Night Out in the Parks” initiative, brings free symphonic concerts to Chicago parks in local communities in Chicago’s South and West sides. Students and community members of all ages and levels bring their instruments and rehearse and perform free concerts with Chicago Philharmonic musicians. Since the program launched in 2015, we’ve brought the Side by Side program to nine Chicago Parks, including:
- Ping Tom Memorial Park (Chinatown)
- Humboldt Park (Humboldt Park)
- Columbus Park (Austin)
- South Shore Cultural Center (South Shore)
- Pottawattomie Park (Rogers Park)
- Piotrowski Park (Little Village/South Lawndale)
- Hamilton Park (Englewood)
- Garfield Park Conservatory (Garfield Park)
- La Follette Park (Austin)
This summer, Side by Side returns on Saturday, July 15 at the beautiful Ping Tom Memorial Park in Chinatown. Interested in participating as a musician? Sign up now!
We sat down with Board Director JeNyce Boolton to talk about how Chicago Philharmonic’s vision aligns with U.S. Bank.
How did you find Chicago Philharmonic?
JeNyce: One might call it chance, but I like to think of it as a bit of a destined partnership between myself and the Chicago Philharmonic. Through my work at U.S. Bank, I partner with organizations to support community. When an opportunity came across my desk for U.S. Bank to sponsor a side-by-side concert with the Chicago Philharmonic, I jumped at the chance to do so. That was nearly six years ago, and I have been committed to the organization and its mission ever since.
What is your role at U.S. Bank?
JeNyce: As the Midwest Region Manager for Community Affairs and Engagement, the community is at the core of everything that I do. I’m driven by our shared purpose at U.S. Bank: to power human potential. I do this by working together with our community partners to make a difference in the lives of our neighbors through the arts, financial education, and so much more.
Tell us more about how U.S. Bank supports the community.
JeNyce: At U.S. Bank, we are dedicated to supporting our communities through responsive and humbled actions focused on addressing racial and economic inequities and creating lasting change in our communities. Through our Community Possible Grant Program, we are partnering with organizations that focus on economic and workforce advancement, safe and affordable housing and communities connected through arts and culture.
Why are the performing arts and music education important to you personally?
JeNyce: As the mom of two brass musicians, I see the power and impact of the performing arts and music education firsthand. The fulfillment I get from being able to see the joy in my children as they build a lifelong love affair with music is beyond any words I can share with you. While music may be deeply personal, it is also a powerful uniter. We can all share in the emotions in a piece of music even if there are no words or we don’t understand the language. It’s why access to moving and exceptional orchestral music is for all of us, regardless of who we are or where we come from. That reason alone is why it’s a privilege to support the Chicago Philharmonic!
About JeNyce Boolton
JeNyce Boolton is Vice President, East Region Community Relations Manager for U.S. Bank where she is responsible for setting the strategic direction and driving the impact of community relations, foundation giving, charitable sponsorships and employee engagement. Most recently, JeNyce was Director of Public Affairs for RBS Citizens/Charter One Bank where she led charitable initiatives, philanthropic activities, community outreach and marketing sponsorships in Illinois. Prior to this role, JeNyce held positions of increasing responsibility in public affairs, cause marketing and communications at U.S. Cellular, United Airlines, Dominick’s Finer Foods, and Flowers Communications Group. JeNyce earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.