Jessica Phillips is an experienced performer, dedicated educator, and innovative leader in the arts. She has been a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra clarinet section since 2001 and has performed as Acting Principal for nine seasons. She is on the graduate studies faculties of The Juilliard School and the Manhattan School of Music Center for Community Impact and Career Readiness. She cut her teeth as Chair of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra Committee from 2014-2019 when she led two negotiations and pioneered creative, often paradigm-shifting solutions to complex issues. In 2014, she co-founded the ground-breaking nonprofit K+P Strategy, a boutique creative agency that specialized in brand identity, digital content, and strategic planning for artists and arts organizations.
In addition to leading clarinet masterclasses and sectionals all over the world, she has been a guest speaker and panel participant at Opera America, the League of American Orchestras, the International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians (ICSOM), The Juilliard School, and the San Francisco Conservatory. Additionally, she serves on the boards of The Field, a nonprofit organization that seeks to empower artists of all disciplines and backgrounds, and New York City's Union Local 802, where she brings her passion and knowledge of labor relations, nonprofits, strategic public relations, equity, diversity, inclusion, belonging, and access, as well as community engagement to advocate for the next generation of musicians and the performing arts.
She graduated cum laude from Barnard College, Columbia University, where she holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Music and completed her MBA in Arts Entrepreneurship from the Global Leadership Institute in August 2023. She participated in the League of American Orchestras Essentials of Orchestra Management program in 2022, and Opera America's Leadership Intensive in 2021. In 2020-21, she completed certificates from NYU School of Professional Studies in Nonprofit Arts Management, Cornell in Labor Relations and Collective Bargaining, and Harvard Law School's Program on Negotiation.