Alumni hero


Formerly Chicago Children's Choir, Uniting Voices Chicago’s mission has an impact spanning generations as our network of over 50,000 alumni continue to inspire and change lives around the world.

Our alumni are global leaders who transform their industries with an emphasis on community, education and activism, representing excellence in every aspect of their work.

The international reach of our alumni advances opportunities for all as they amplify new voices and ideas across many professional fields including neuroscience, engineering, government policy, education, business leadership, impact investing, entertainment, technology and more! Our alumni continually engage with and support Uniting Voices Chicago through stewardship, volunteering, performance and connections with current singers and audiences.


Give the Magic of Travel!

This spring, our Bridging America Tour will take singers to Boston, Lexington, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C.! Singers will perform at some of the country’s most iconic venues, including the Kennedy Center. And Voice of Chicago will embark on an international tour to Mexico City and Oaxaca, Mexico! These unmatched opportunities help expand the worldview of our singers as they forge new connections with youth around the world. Perhaps most importantly, during these tours our singers serve as ambassadors for Chicago, reshaping the perception of our great city as they develop into global leaders of the next generation.

Thanks to the generosity of our alumni community last year, we were able to send six singers on tour at no cost to them. This year, our goal is to raise $7,000 for the Alumni Tour Fundraising Initiative—and thanks to former conductor Christina Hatherly, your donation can make twice the impact as she'll match every dollar raised toward our goal.

Thank you for your commitment to inspire and uplift our talented youth as they imagine and build a harmonious world.

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Sima alumni

"It's really special to return as an alum to this organization, because I know that it was such a big part of my life as a young person and it opened up not only opportunities but experiences that I could have never had any other way. And so to return and have that feeling again of voices at my back is really meaningful to me and it reminds me how important and how unique that life experience was."

Sima Cunningham Musician and Alumni

Nicole Homerin (Choir Years: 2003-05)

Uniting Voices alumni have a special appreciation of the value of youth mentorship, especially Nicole Homerin. Currently based in Los Angeles where she works as an Inclusion Communities Manager for Partners for Youth with Disabilities, Nicole is a passionate advocate and mentor for disabled youth. She is the 2023 recipient of the Steve Bartlett Award, and later this year, she will be presented with the 2023 Trailblazer Award from the Boston University Wheelock School of Education for her work in disability advocacy and anti-ableist education.

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Dr. Jason Hoellwarth (Choir Years: 1994-1996)

"[The choir] made me feel like I didn't merely live in the city, the city and I lived together."

Jason Hoellwarth's journey has taken him from the stage to the operating room! After singing with the choir, an opportunity that allowed him to perform all around Chicago, he pursued his interest in medicine and ultimately graduated from the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California. Now, he's performing a surgery only few doctors can: connecting artificial limbs directly to a patient's skeleton. But even as a world-class doctor, his musical passion and performance exposure ignited from the choir remains a part of his life, as he explored Chinese lion dance and ultimately founded his own dance teams in Pittsburgh and New York.

Lisa Arnold (Choir Years: 1995-2003 [singer], 2014-2023 [conductor])

”I am a better person, a more passionate ally and a much more empathetic teacher from my time in Uniting Voices."

Lisa Arnold started her musical journey as a singer in the Lincoln Park Neighborhood Choir and then returned a few music degrees later to become one of our conductors, working with many school programs and the Pilsen/Little Village Neighborhood Choir. One of the many highlights of her time with the organization was on tour in 2022, watching choirs beautifully sing her arrangement of Precious Lord in front of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C. Now, after a combined 17 years with Uniting Voices, she's on to the next chapter in her musical life as Curriculum Leader for Fine and Performing Arts with Detroit Public Schools.

Michael Preacely

Michael Preacely, DMA has received critical acclaim for his performances with major and regional opera houses from Kentucky Opera to the Cincinnati Pops and American Spiritual Ensemble. But amidst his successful and demanding performance career, Michael has stayed present for the choir. He performed at Red Jacket Optional 2019, joined virtual performance projects during the pandemic and welcomed Dimension, Bucktown and Beverly Neighborhood Choirs to University of Kentucky for their tour of the Bluegrass in 2021. Michael recognizes that the experience he had in the choir was so transformative that he wants to bring the same opportunity to young people in the Bluegrass region through Uniting Voices Lexington. Read more about our program expansion helmed by our very own alum in the Lexington Herald Leader.

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