Meet Our Team

John Devlin
Founding Board Member
Artistic Director & Conductor

John Devlin is the Artistic Director of Gourmet Symphony, Cover Conductor for the National Symphony Orchestra, and Assistant Conductor of the Princeton Symphony Orchestra. Of his recent debut with the NSO and soloist Joshua Bell, Anne Midgette of The Washington Post wrote that Devlin “led the evening with flair … and was visibly in his element.” Devlin’s mission as a conductor is to deliver concerts that frame orchestral music in new and innovative ways. His artistic leadership has inspired many forward-thinking concepts including Gourmet Symphony and others: Go-Go Symphony, Seamless Symphony, Interactive Symphony, and the New Retro Project. The Washington Post has hailed these projects as “refreshingly unfamiliar” events that deliver “a new audience for classical music,” and have brought “the sold-out house to its feet, cheering.”

Devlin graduated with both a master’s and a doctoral degree in Orchestral Conducting from the University of Maryland School of Music, where he studied with James Ross. His undergraduate degree is from Emory University where he graduated summa cum laude with a double major in Music and Latin. His other conducting mentors include Christoph Eschenbach and Rossen Milanov.

Inspired by Gourmet Symphony, John has starting spending lots of time in the kitchen, and thinks he might have the best gin collection in Old Town, Alexandria where he lives in great happiness with his wife and co-partner in GS crime, Camille…and their two amazing (and inedible!) bunnies: Oatmeal and Raisin.

Chris Payton
Culinary Director

Chris Payton currently books and oversees all of the special events as the Director of Sales at The Fillmore Silver Spring, where clients include Discovery Communications, WeddingWire, and the Washington Redskins Cheerleaders. He is also President of the Board of Trustees of the McLean Orchestra in Virginia. His food and beverage background ranges from being the Chef/Owner of Curry Club in Georgetown (2002-2008) to a 2­-year term with Ridgewells Catering. Chris has also had careers in theater as a producer and director in London, as well as in magazine publishing as an Associate Publisher with the BBC.

 

Camille Cintrón Devlin
Founding Board Member
Communications Director

Camille currently serves as the Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications at George Mason University's College of Visual and Performing Arts. She previously held the positions of: Press Representative for the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC; Public Relations Manager at Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts in Vienna, Virginia; and Public Relations and Marketing Manager at GALA Hispanic Theatre also in DC.

Camille earned a Master’s degree in Arts Administration from Boston University in 2009. While in Boston, she had the opportunity to work in the marketing departments of various performing arts organizations, including the New Philharmonia Orchestra, the Newton Cultural Alliance, Project STEP, and Opera Boston. She also interned with the Eastern Music Festival and the Akron Symphony Orchestra. In addition to her career as a communications professional, Camille remains active as a freelance oboist. She holds degrees in Music Performance from the University of Akron and the Puerto Rico Conservatory of Music.

Cara Fleck Plewinski
Artistic Administrator

Cara Fleck Plewinski is a musician and arts manager in the DC, Maryland, and Virginia areas. Upon completing a Master of Arts in Arts Management from American University in 2010, Cara returned to the University of Maryland School of Music—her alma mater—as the Assistant Director of Marketing and External Relations. In 2015, she assumed the additional position of Program Manager for the School of Music’s new summer music program, the UMD High School Music Academy. As an active freelance harpist, Cara is a core member of the Grammy­-nominated Inscape Chamber Orchestra and performs with many of the area’s major ensembles. She now serves as the Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications at the University of Maryland Department of Transportation.

Elena Forbes
Operations Manager


Elena Forbes is currently the Development Associate for Institutional Relations at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, responsible for managing a 7-figure portfolio of foundation, corporate, and government grants. Over the past 7 years, Elena has held development positions with GALA Hispanic Theatre, the Atlas Performing Arts Center, and the DC Youth Orchestra Program. She has also recently completed a 3-year term serving on the Steering Committee for the Emerging Arts Leaders of DC (EALDC), most recently as the 2016-2017 co-chair. Elena is a member of the Grant Professionals Association, and often serves as a Grant Advisory Panelist for multiple local grant makers.

Elena graduated in 2011 from The Catholic University of America with a Bachelor of Music in Instrumental Music Education and received a Master of Arts in Arts Management from George Mason University in May 2016. Outside of her full-time commitments, she maintains a profile as a freelance professional clarinetist.

John Coco
Founding Board Member

John is a seasoned food and beverage operations director with 15 years of experience in the Washington, DC hospitality industry. John brings with him the expertise gained from managing award-winning wine programs at Star Restaurant Group’s flagship restaurant, Zola, and the acclaimed Mie N Yu in Georgetown. He also served as Wine Director for the Neighborhood Restaurant Group and most recently was the brains behind the wine and beverage programs at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. During his 4-year tenure at the Kennedy Center, he worked hand in hand with the National Symphony Orchestra, The Washington National Opera, The Washington Ballet, and the Performing Arts for Everyone initiative, to create innovative and custom-tailored catering events that showcased one-of-a-kind cocktail creations and culinary tastings.  

Briana Millage
Founding Board Member

Briana is a passionate arts manager and fundraiser with nearly 8 years of experience in corporate sponsorships, partnership marketing, and brand alignment to support DC’s creative community. She currently works in the Smithsonian Institution’s Office of Advancement as Assistant Director of Corporate Relations. Her previous posts include Destination DC, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and the Pittsburgh Symphony.

A self-professed “culture vulture” and locavore, Briana is an active member of DC’s nonprofit and cultural communities. She was a Co-Chair of the Steering Committee for EALDC and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Metro Events Specialists, and the Young Nonprofit Leadership Network.

Originally from Houston, Briana holds a Master of Arts Management from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Music from Boston University. 

Stephanie Johnson headshot.png

Stephanie Johnson
Board Member at Large

In love with the arts since childhood, Stephanie studied piano, ballet, and French horn before finding her passion in arts management. She currently works at Washington Performing Arts as the Associate Director of Major Gifts, and has held previous posts with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at Strathmore and the Cincinnati Symphony Youth Orchestra. In addition to her board service with Gourmet Symphony, she is the Vice President of Membership for the DC Metro Area Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals, and is a former co-chair of Emerging Arts Leaders DC. Stephanie holds an MA in Arts Administration from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, an MBA from the UC Lindner College of Business, and a BM in Music Performance from Florida State University.

Jonathan Levy
Board Member at Large

Jonathan is merely an amateur when it comes to the food, beverage, and classical music worlds but he brings more than a decade of experience in policy and politics to the team. He served as Policy Advisor to then-Congressman Rahm Emanuel and more recently, as Deputy Chief of Staff to Ernest Moniz at the U.S. Department of Energy. He is currently the Director for Policy and Strategy at Vision Ridge Partners, a firm dedicated to tackling the challenge of climate change through profitable investments. Jonathan is a Chicago native who graduated magna cum laude from Emory University with a degree in Political Science. When he isn't traveling or trying new restaurants in DC (or elsewhere), he is trying to maintain and improve his skills on the drums, in the kitchen, and on the baseball field.