Susan Courtial is one of BBO’s four founding directors. She played a significant role in establishing its core values and guiding its early development. Susan is so happy that the ensemble continues to flourish today. A California native, Susan holds a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance from San Francisco State University and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the College of Notre Dame, graduating as class valedictorian. She completed her K-12 music teaching credential at the University of Oregon and her Master’s in Education at Boise State. She has done extensive academic research on brain-based teaching strategies and their application to string pedagogy, a young field of study. In San Francisco she worked with Dan Kobialka, then principal 2nd violin of the SF Symphony and concertmaster of the Mostly Mozart Festival, and with Jenny Rudin, a protégé of Yehudi Menuhin. Her chamber music coach was Lazlo Vargas, former principal cellist of the Philadelphia Orchestra. Susan is a string teacher in the Boise School District and enjoys varied interests including hiking with her two Chesapeake Bay Retrievers, boating, fishing, camping, travel, organic gardening, and Oregon Trail history.