The first in her family to attend university, Cynthia received her B.Mus and B.Ed from Queen’s University, a M.Ed. at the University of Victoria, and a D.M.A. (Conducting) from the Eastman School of Music. She has received numerous teaching, research, and leadership awards in Canada and the United States.
Cynthia was appointed Dean—Faculty of Music at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, just outside of Toronto, July 1, 2021. She leads a school of approximately 500 undergraduate and graduate music majors with programs in traditional conservatory programming coupled with innovative programs such as the Bachelors, Masters, and PhD in Community Music, and Artist Diplomas in Opera Performance, Chamber Music, MMusic in Collaboration, Creation, and Curation (MMC3).
Before her appointment as Dean, Cynthia was Director of Band at the University of Georgia where she conducted the Wind Ensemble, led the MM and DMA programs in conducting, provided strategic leadership in diversity, equity, and inclusivity initiatives, and oversaw the entire band program. The Hodgson Wind Ensemble performed at the CBDNA National Convention in 2017. She conducts and presents her research nationally and internationally. She is widely published and has recorded CDs with the Innova and Albany labels.
Cynthia has served as a board member WASBE and currently serves on the board of the Western International Band Clinic (WIBC) and serves on the advisory boards of the Institute for Composer Diversity, Lift Music Fund, and United Sound Music. She is an honorary member of Kappa Kappa Psi and a National Arts Associate member of Sigma Alpha Iota.