About Musack

Musack's Mission

Musack's mission is to give kids and teens a voice through music by providing guitars, drums, and support for music teachers - wherever the need arises. We take our cue from Woody Guthrie's "This machine kills fascists." To us, this machine can change lives! Musack: We make music happen. 

Musack Stats & History

Currently, Musack benefits over 1000 students and counting in 18 locations around the world. After a rash of teen suicides in his hometown, Donick Cary started Musack with a simple donation of 20 guitars to Nantucket High School in 2007. Musack has since grown to support 18 different programs in the US, Cuba, Aboriginal Australia, and Haiti, while continuing to serve the students of Nantucket. Musack has donated hundreds of instruments, multiple theater productions, and has an active scholarship program for kids pursuing music-related higher education. We have also funded rap and podcast labs.

Musack Supports Programs In:

  • Nantucket - High School music program, Boys and Girls Club after-school program, music center, and theater programs
  • Los Angeles - Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies and Larchmont Charter School
  • Compton - Whaley Middle School
  • Haiti - Haitian American Caucus - Haiti orphanage program
  • Appalachia - Folk School JAM
  • Cuba - Conservatorio Amadeo Roldan, via Musack Missionaries to Cuba program
  • Australia - Aborigine Brisbane Detention Center 
  • Native American programs - The Santa Fe Indian School, Red Mesa High School, Acoma Middle School, Navajo Reservation music programs
  • Chattanooga -New partnership with Songbird Foundation, serving Children's Hospital of Erlanger 
  • Oakland - Partnership with 3 O'Clock Rock
  • Alaska - Galena Interior Learning Academy, serving 78 native Alaskan villages

Photos

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Board

Donick Cary - Founder and President

Emmy-winning writer and producer Donick Cary got his start writing for Late Night with David Letterman.  He continued working with the show through its move to CBS, serving as both head writer and the “guy in the bear suit.” 

After five years in late night, Cary moved to The Simpsons, where he served as a co-executive producer for five seasons (7-11).  

He then served in the same capacity on NBC’s Just Shoot Me, HBO’s Bored to Death, Fox’s New Girl, NBC’s Parks and Recreation and HBO’s Silicon Valley.  Cary has produced pilots for and developed with:  Brillstein Grey, Sony Television, Happy Madison, Conaco, ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, FX, HBO, the WB and Nickelodeon.

In 2004 Donick created the animated series Lil’ Bush for Ampd mobile cell phones. The show was then picked up by Comedy Central and became the first mobi/web-series ever to move from the web to television.  To handle the animation Donick founded Sugarshack Animation (Sugarshackanimation.com) with offices in Los Angeles, Miami, and Sofia, Bulgaria. In 2007 Donick founded Musack.org a 501(c)3 charity that provides instruments and music lessons to under-served youth.  Donick also serves on the boards of the following organizations: The Nantucket Film Festival, The Nantucket Comedy Festival, and The Campbell Folk School.  

Currently Cary is working on two documentaries: one entitled Bad Trip (a comic exploration of psychedelics) in association with Ben Stiller’s Red Hour films and one entitled The R Word about his love of the pro football team in Washington and it’s possibly inappropriate name. 

Cary grew up on Nantucket Island, graduating from Nantucket High School in 1986 and then attending Boston University.

Meg Ruley - Vice President

Meg grew up on Nantucket Island and was a classmate of founding MUSACK directors Donick Cary and Alex Stancioff. After graduating from Nantucket High School, Meg attended Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA and earned an MBA from Hood College in Frederick Maryland. 

Working in college admissions for over 10 years, Meg held several positions including the Director of Admissions of Emmanuel College in Boston, MA. After leaving higher education, Meg worked as a project manager for Investors Bank and Trust (now part of State Street Bank). In 2003 Meg returned to Nantucket fulltime and is a real estate broker at Atlantic East Nantucket Real Estate. Meg has served on the board of the Nantucket Education Trust, and was co-founder of the Parent Network at Small Friends on Nantucket. In addition to MUSACK, Meg volunteers for the Nantucket Lighthouse School. 

Alex Stancioff - Treasurer

Alex is the co-founder and CEO of Shooger, a smartphone marketing automation platform. He is also co-founder of the digital animation studio SugarShack Animation, which he and Donick launched in 2006. SugarShack produced “Lil’ Bush”, the first mobile show to migrate backwards to primetime TV on Comedy Central.

SugarShack employs some of the most talented and experienced artists stateside and abroad including Emmy Award winning writers and producers. They offer all phases of the animation process for projects of all size and scope, from animated videos for businesses and charities to full television series productions. Alex has an MBA with honors from Georgetown University, and an honors-free BA from Connecticut College. He lives in Miami with his wife Lissette and boys Julian and Daniel, and grew up on Nantucket with Meg and Donick.

Dave Finkel - Clerk

Dave is a native of Los Angeles but after a series of aborted attempts at college, he ended up at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in the Experimental Theater Wing (from which he also dropped out). After meandering around New York for several years, trying his hand at several things and just wasting everyone’s time and energy, he eventually dragged himself back to Los Angeles, hat in hand, where he made his way to the ACME Comedy Theater. 

There he met his writing and producing partner, Brett Baer. Soon after the pair began writing on Steven Spielberg’s animated programs “Animaniacs” and “Pinky and the Brain”, for which they received a Daytime Emmy Award nomination. Finkel and Baer transitioned into primetime television where they’ve written for a wide variety of shows, including “Just Shoot Me!”, “Happy Family”, “Norm”, and Showtime's “United States of Tara”. In 2007 they won their first Emmy and Writers Guild of America awards as Co-Executive Producers on “30 Rock”. Currently Dave serves as writer and Executive Producer on Fox’s “New Girl”. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife Marni and three kids, Roscoe, Clyde, and Trixie. He encourages all young people to not follow his example, go to college, and be focused.