The San Diego 500, The Book of Influential Business Leaders, is the market’s most comprehensive product of people you should know in the business community. The 500 includes business leaders and executives who have founded or are running significant companies in terms of number of jobs, key products and services, experts who raise the level of the industry here and beyond and those who lead in the business community. The 500 is selected by the San Diego Business Journal newsroom.

Martha Gilmer

CEO, San Diego Symphony Orchestra

Martha Gilmer took the chief executive’s job at the San Diego Symphony in fall 2014, after a 35-year tenure with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, where she developed longstanding relationships with a who’s who of guest artists. While in San Diego, Gilmer oversaw record-setting attendance for the 2016-2017 symphony season. She also secured a five-year collective bargaining agreement with the symphony’s 82 musicians; the deal’s benefits include increased wages, workload limits as well as resources for artistic growth. The San Diego Symphony’s 2017-2018 season will see 11 guest conductors and the world premiere of Adam Schoenberg’s violin concerto.

ALMA MATER: Northwestern University

BUCKET LIST : Kayaking with orcas in Alaska.

FAVORITE TRAVEL DESTINATION: “It is so hard to choose, but I love anywhere in Italy.”