About the Minnesota Guitar Society

Board of Directors

President: Mark Bussey

Vice-President: Joanne Backer

Artistic Director: Joe Hagedorn

Managing Director: Emily Wright

Secretary: Chris Olson

Treasurer: Al Norton

Board Members:
Kristian Anderson
Jerry Bannach
Christopher Becknell
James Flegel
Joe Haus
Steve Kakos
Annett Richter
Brent Weaver
Ben Woolman


Tech Guru: Jim Campbell
Newsletter Editor:
Emily Wright
Newsletter Production: i draw the line, inc. / Fox Ridge Printing
Newsletter Distribution: Joanne Backer, Chris Becknell, Jim Falbo, Joe Haus, Ben Woolman
Website: Amy Lytton
Online Calendar: Al Norton

Mission and History

The MGS Mission Statement

Promote the guitar in all its stylistic and cultural diversity through sponsorship of public forums, concerts, and workshops.

Serve as an educational and social link between the community and amateur and professional guitarists of all ages.


Since its organization in 1985, the Minnesota Guitar Society has entertained, developed, and educated audiences, supported local artists, and promoted musical diversity through annual concert series that present regionally and internationally known artists, as well as workshops, education programs, and a bi-monthly newsletter. The MGS is a non-profit organization with elected board members and officers. The MGS is a largely volunteer organization with a one-third-time paid staff person (the Managing Director) who is responsible for concert and special programs planning and implementation, concert promotion, and the newsletter.There are currently 14 board members. The Minnesota Guitar Society is supported by the third largest dues-paying membership (300) of the 60-some guitar societies in the U.S. Our members come from practically every socioeconomic group in the region, a direct result of the universal and cross-cultural appeal of the guitar and guitar related music.