Dr. Christina Svec

Director of Choirs


Dr. Christina Svec is currently the Assistant Professor of Music Education at Iowa State University where she teaches courses in elementary and secondary choral music methods. She received her PhD and Bachelor of Music Education degrees from the University of North Texas and a Master of Music Education degree from Michigan State University. She has also earned three levels of certification in Music Learning Theory and three levels in Kodály.

Before coming to Iowa State and the Ames Children’s Choirs, Dr. Svec taught elementary music for six years and has been involved with early childhood music for nearly fifteen years. She has served as Director of Children’s Music for First United Methodist Church of McKinney, TX and as Director of Music (including Children’s Choirs) for First Presbyterian Church of McKinney, TX.

In addition to her music-making and educating, Dr. Svec is a passionate music education researcher. Her research interests include research methodology, research pedagogy, and singing voice development. She has presented papers, research posters, and sessions at conferences locally, nationally, and internationally. Her publications can be found in Update: Applications of Research in Music Education and Psychology of Music.

Erika Johnson

Choir Director

Erika Johnson Erika Johnson is a vocal and general music teacher for the Ames Community School District where she teaches K-5 general music and an extracurricular choir. She has worked with children in the performing arts for 22 years, encompassing preschool through high school teaching, private voice and violin instruction, children’s choir director, and musical theater director. Mrs. Johnson studied music education and vocal performance at Ithaca College and completed Kodaly training at Wichita State University. She resides in Ames and enjoys reading and spending time with her husband and three young children.

Shon Stephenson

Operations Manager

Shon StephensonShon Stephenson joined the Ames Children’s Choirs in 2003 as the Executive Assistant. She is a graduate from Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Music in Education. As a student, Mrs. Stephenson performed as a flutist with the Iowa State Symphony, ISU Wind Ensemble, and ISU Wind Quintet. Upon graduation she worked as the music librarian for WOI public radio. Prior to joining the Ames Children’s Choirs, Mrs. Stephenson worked as an educational assistant with the Ames Community Schools.

Mrs. Stephenson has been a flutist with the Central Iowa Symphony since its inception in 1987, holding the principal chair since 2009. In addition, she has been an active member of the Ames Municipal Band since 1998. Over the years, Mrs. Stephenson has performed in numerous community recitals and special events, regularly accompanying the Ames Children’s Choirs concerts. For fifteen years, she was also a pianist with her church’s music team.

Mrs. Stephenson and her husband live in Ames. They have five grown children and five grandchildren. In addition to musical endeavors, Mrs. Stephenson enjoys gardening, traveling, and family time.