Maria Wood, Executive Director
After growing up on the banks of the Queen Anne's County side of the Chester River, Maria left the eastern shore for a few decades to pursue her education and her life's work in the arts and the nonprofit sector, not necessarily in that order. In 1998 Maria co-founded the National Children's Music Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to using music to enhance traditional education and provide enrichment programs, promoting humanitarian values through participation and appreciation of music. She also ran an independent record company and traveled to all but four of the contiguous United States managing a band that played music for children and families. She holds a BA in American Studies, a Certificate in Ethnomusicology from Smith College and has written and taught about the musical and cultural game-changer, Hamilton. She returned to the banks of the Chester River in 2018 and lives in Chestertown, with her daughter, father, a slow, middle-aged cat and a very quick "quarantine kitten".
Maria's work at RiverArts reflects her lifelong belief that art of all kinds is one of the most powerful forces available for building communities and changing lives.