Allan grew up in Rochester, New York in a music -loving family, lived in Cambridge while in law school, and has lived in Winchester since 1962. He retired at the end of 2010, after 42 years as Executive Director of the Massachusetts Law Reform Institute, a statewide legal advocacy program representing the poor. Among his music-related activities are membership on the New England Conservatory’s Board of Overseers and its Board of Trustees’ College Student Affairs Committee, in the Harvard Musical Association, and on the Advisory Committee of the Winchester Community Music School. In addition, he has mentored a NEC cello student for five years, and takes his own music appreciation course at the Music School. He joined the board of A Far Cry in 2015.