The Kerrville Folk Festival Foundation

a 501(c)(3) non-profit incorporation

Our Purpose, Our Vision, Our Mission

Our purpose is to educate the public about the benefits and characteristics of folk music. We exist to provide a unique experience in a musical community that is enjoyable and rewarding to the listeners and the performers who share their craft.

​Our vision is of an inclusive community where the craft of songwriting is shared, respected, and supported. We celebrate and honor powerful and insightful songs across the spectrums of genre, race, gender identity, culture, or religion.  We value music from all folks that can be enjoyed by people of all ages.

Our mission is to promote public appreciation and support for songwriters, the songwriting craft, and the gift that folk music offers to the world.

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 The Kerrville Folk Festival Foundation presents several music-related events annually.  Its flagship event, the Kerrville Folk Festival, has a legacy spanning 50 years.  The Festival features more than 100 performing songwriters in intimate musical settings over 18 wonderful days and nights. Established in 1973, the annual Grassy Hill New Folk Competition for emerging songwriters will be held for the 50th consecutive year in 2023.  It is always a high point of the Festival and draws some of the best emerging songwriters from across the world. Offering a variety of music workshops, schools, seminars and activities for all ages, the Festival focuses on nurturing and developing artistic expression, especially the art of songwriting, in a loving family-friendly environment. The Kerrville Folk Festival is celebrated by a community which considers itself a family. Everyone arriving, whether for the first or fortieth time is greeted with, “Welcome Home!".

Other annual Foundation events include Welcome Home Festival in the fall, Music Camp for Teens in partnership with the Boys and Girls Club of Central Texas, and Music at the Mansion in partnership with Schreiner University.

The Foundation accomplishes its mission and reaches toward its vision by promoting folk music in its many and varied forms, and by actively supporting songwriting, songwriters and folk music education.

The Foundation provides folk music education for the musician and non-musician community through workshops, seminars, and other educational events.

Many Programs are held during our flagship event, the Kerrville Folk Festival, including:

  • Grassy Hill New Folk Competition

  • Songwriters' School

  • Ukulele Workshop

  • Harmonica Workshop

  • Guitar Classes

  • YAPI (Young Artists’ Performance Incubator)

  • Music Law Panel

  • University Songwriters Competition


We offer seminars and workshops designed to help songwriters hone their musicianship, songwriting, music skills and techniques; and instruct them in aspects of music business such as production, promotion and law.

We provide support and create a friendly, sustainable environment for songwriters and musicians to allow them to focus on their craft.

​We continue to expand the prestige and legacy of the Grassy Hill New Folk Finalists.  New Folk Curators and their team of listeners are professional songwriters and/or instructors, many of whom are former New Folk.  New Folk Ambassadors provide logistical support to finalists beginning the moment they are notified.  Beginning in 2020, the New Folk Contest and Winners Concert was live-streamed.  Going forward, the Contest and Winners Concert will continue to be live-streamed.  New Folk Tour Managers host Winners on a Texas tour of high value performance opportunities.

We continue and expand efforts to support house concert series and develop new songwriter performance avenues and venues.
 

We support and sponsor music events such as International Folk Alliance and Fischer  Fest.

We sponsor and co-sponsor musical and educational events which focus on singer-songwriter development.

We continue and expand the Collegiate Songwriters Competition to grow our base within colleges and universities.

We create and support singer/songwriter showcase events and concert series in the local and regional community such as Music at the Mansion.

We educate the general public, particularly underserved audiences such as senior citizens and children, about folk music and the work of singer/songwriters.

We help fund and grow the annual Music Camp for Teens, held each July at Quiet Valley Ranch in partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Texas.

We develop outreach programs to bring songwriters and folk music education programs to local and regional audiences, i.e. schools, hospitals, elder care facilities, community and group events.

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We assure the perpetual growth of our flagship Kerrville Folk Festival, its programs and events, as well as other Foundation-sponsored events through effective management of our sources of funding; assure continued growth of the Foundation's home at Quiet Valley Ranch, Kerrville through proper management of financial, human, and ecological resources.

 

We continue the development of our supporting foundations, as well as our donor and sponsor base, including the administration of KFFF Membership programs, fundraising and pledge campaigns to create a broad base of annual support.

We develop and grow a broad-based Endowment plan supporting the Foundation.

We maintain and use the data base of donors, members, volunteers, and sponsors for notices of fundraising, meetings, news and other efforts and events.

We create and manage fundraising activities consistent with our mission and vision, including ongoing communication with our members, donors and sponsors for donations, targeted program fundraising, and special events.

We continue to attract board and committee members and volunteers dedicated to fulfilling the Foundation's program, administrative and development needs.

We provide effective leadership of the volunteers and staff managing the Ranch infrastructure.

 

Meet the KFFF Board of Directors

The Kerrville Folk Festival Board of Directors is a dedicated group of members who are passionate about the Festival and the gifts songwriting brings to the world.  On a volunteer basis, these folks dedicate at least one evening a month to a business meeting and many board members take on additional leadership roles to sustain Foundation activities.  When meetings are face-to-face, board members pay all their own expenses.

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Val Stinson

Board Chair

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Sami Burk

Vice Chair

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Chuck Lesniak

Secretary

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Dr. Kerry Knerr

Treasurer

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Michael Bowers

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Tom Prasada-Rao

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David Obermann

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Hilary Adamson

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Evan Spielvogel

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Dr. Stuart Vexler

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Dave "Bluegrass" Wilmoth

Kerrville Folk Festival Foundation Staff

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Mary Muse

Executive Director

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Trista Rizk

Operations Manager

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JC & Dorothy Hammond

  Ranch Manager & Admin. Assistant

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Carl Hix

Accountant