Kipper Ackerman ’97 Joins Alma Mater as New Assistant Director of Admission for Fine Arts and Director of Choir at Presbyterian College

June 23, 2024
Presbyterian College alumna Kipper Edens Ackerman ’97 will join her alma mater as its new assistant director of admissions for fine arts and choir director.Ackerman, a seasoned musician and music educator with more than 25 years of professional experience, begins her new position on Aug. 1.

“I am thrilled to welcome Kipper Ackerman to this exciting role at Presbyterian College,” said college president Dr. Anita Gustafson. “Kipper’s passion for music and teaching and her genuine love for PC make her uniquely qualified to lead our choral program and inspire new students to participate in our fine arts programs, which we believe to be essential to the liberal arts tradition.”

This spring, the college combined its music, art, and theater programs into a single new department – the Department of Visual and Performing Arts. In addition to directing the college choir, Ackerman’s role is to help reinvigorate interest in the arts at PC.

“I am so grateful for the opportunity that lies ahead with this new position at PC and am beyond excited to have the honor of directing the Presbyterian College Choir,” she said. “The long-lasting tradition of visual and performing arts at PC is very important to me, and I look forward to providing possibilities for our current and potential students to create an experience they will carry with them for a lifetime.”

Ackerman is presently the director of music and communications at the Church of the Holy Comforter in Sumter, where she facilitates and directs all adult and children’s choirs and ensembles, maintains the church website, and designs its weekly newsletter. She has also served as church musician and choir director at Dalzell United Methodist Church and as director of choral activities at Thomas Sumter Academy.

Ackerman also served as a hospice liaison for Amedysis Hospice in Sumter, where she created and executed a sales and marketing plan and coordinated and provided education sessions for people seeking hospice care.

Ackerman has also maintained a steady performance career. She is the principal harpist for the Florence Symphony Orchestra and has performed at numerous weddings, receptions, funerals, and solo concerts. In June 2025, she will be the guest conductor of a community choir performing at Carnegie Hall in New York City and hopes to bring along several attendees from the PC Choir and choir alumni.

Ackerman also honors PC’s motto, “While We Live, We Serve,” by putting her talent and energy into community service. She is the founder and director of The Sounds of Grace, a nonprofit that gathers volunteer musicians to provide peace and healing through music in healthcare hospice facilities and special needs classrooms. She was named to the Women’s Honor Roll of Sumter for her many contributions in 2019 and recognized with the Spirit of the Community Award in 2023.

At PC, Ackerman graduated magna cum laude with a degree in music education and was an Edouarde Patte Music Scholar. In 1997, she was named Outstanding Senior in Music. In 2023, she earned her Master of Music Education from North Greenville University.

Ackerman and her husband, Curt, have been married for 25 years. Curt is the vice president of strategic planning and business development at Tandem Health in Sumter. They have three children: Eliza ’18, Laura Ruth, and Sam.