Meet the HBCU-NBDC Faculty

Learn about the world-class faculty of the HBCU-NBDC online convention. All of our clinicians and educators are headliners in the music world and offer a wealth of knowledge in each online presentation.

Thomas G. Warner, Jr.

Thomas Warner, Junior

Thomas G. Warner, Jr. serves as Assistant Director of Bands at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. His primary duties include facilitating aspects of the band related to wind band pedagogy, lecturing, and teaching courses in the Music Department as part of the College of Humanities Arts and Sciences. In addition, Mr. Warner assists The Director of Bands with all aspects of the university band program which include reporting within the Division of Student Affairs, Visual and Performing Arts, and The Music Program. Mr. Warner’s other duties include composing, arranging, teaching music, and conducting/facilitating music rehearsals for The University Marching Band, Wind Ensemble, Trumpet Choir, Brass Choir, and Pep Band. Mr. Warner also assists with student recruitment, consistent communication, and implementation of band logistics and national music education standards.

Mr. Warner is a native of Atlanta, GA and a product of Atlanta Public Schools. Mr. Warner is a Graduate of Morris Brown College in Atlanta, GA where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music, with a concentration in Music Education. Mr. Warner is a graduate of The Florida State University, College of Music in Tallahassee Florida where he studied under Dr. Clifford Madsen, Dr. Steven Kelly, and Scotty Barnhart, earning a Master’s degree in Music Education. Mr. Warner is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Music Education at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Mr. Warner was classically trained on trumpet by Phil Elkins, former trumpeter for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, now Co-Principal Trumpeter for the Greenville Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Warner also studied jazz trumpet at The Florida State University College of Music under Scotty Barnhart of The Count Basie Jazz Orchestra.

As part of the Conn-Selmer Division of education Mr. Warner currently servs as one of their clinicians. He is a sought-after clinician adjudicator, and musical arranger for Metro Atlanta Schools, the state of Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and the United States Virgin Islands. Mr. Warner has served as a music educator, director of bands and orchestra in metro Atlanta and surrounding school districts. Mr. Warner served as an Assistant Band Director at South Carolina State University. He also served as Assistant Director of University Bands, Interim Director of Bands, and Director of Bands at Clark Atlanta University.

Mr. Warner’s professional affiliations include The Historically Black Colleges and Universities National Band Directors' Consortium where he currently serves as President. Mr. Warner has also served as one of the convention coordinators, facilitators, and adjudicator and Director of the Trumpet Choir. He has also been guest conductor of the All-Star Concert Band in 2015. Mr. Warner is a member of the College Band Directors National Association, The Minority Band Directors National Association, The International Trumpet Guild, National Association for Music Educators and has served a member of Georgia Music Educators Association and The Metro Atlanta Community Band. Other professional memberships include: Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity Inc., Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Fraternity of America Inc., Prince Hall Masonry Derwin Brown Lodge #599, John L. Martin Consistory 367A, and Al-Karim Temple #242 of The Ancient Egyptian Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.

Dr. Isrea Butler

Doctor Isrea Butler

Dr. Isrea Butler holds degrees in trombone performance from the Eastman School of Music (BM and MM) and Rutgers University (DMA). His teachers include John Marcellus, Ralph Sauer, George Roberts, Tom Ervin, Michael Powell, Weston Sprott, He has played all four chairs in the world-famous Count Basie Orchestra and with many of the nation’s top jazz ensembles. In addition to orchestras and jazz ensembles, he has played 8 different NYC Broadway productions. He is the Music Department Chair at North Carolina Central University and Professor of Trombone. Dr. Butler was recently the Director of Bands and music program coordinator at The University of Maryland Eastern Shore. He was the Director of Jazz Studies and Low Brass at the University of Mary. He was Visiting Assistant Professor of Music at Jackson State University from 2012-2013, where he taught trombone and conducted the University Brass Ensemble, award-wining Jazz Combo and taught Graduate Music History. He has also taught at the Eastman School of Music, Juilliard’s MAP and Rutgers University. His students have gone on to perform, teach and study at graduate school at Indiana University, Berklee, UNI, Rutgers, Eastman, University of Memphis and Montclair.

As a conductor, Dr. Butler has been the conductor of the UMES Wind Ensemble, HBCU Trombone Choir, Associate Conductor of the Brighton Symphony and Eastman Trombone Choir and Brass Guild. He studied conducting with Brad Lubman, William Weinert, Mark Scatterday and Kynan Johns. While in NYC he was a frequent performer on numerous Broadway shows and many other prestigious musical performances. He has toured, recorded and performed with many of the country’s leading jazz orchestras including Cab Calloway, Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, Mingus Big Band, Glenn Miller, Birdland Big Band, and Jimmy Heath. Orchestra. Also at home playing classical music he has performed with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Rochester Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic. Dr. Butler is a Conn-Selmer clinician and performing artist.

Dr. Julian White

Doctor Julian White

Dr. Julian Earl White is highly acclaimed as a leader of national note in the area of music and band in colleges and universities. He is a Retired Distinguished Professor of Music, Retired Director of Bands and Chairman of the Music Department at Florida A&M University. He graduated from Florida A&M University earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education, and received a Master’s Degree from the University of Illinois, and the Doctor of Philosophy Degree from Florida State University.

Dr. White led the internationally acclaimed “Marching 100” to performances at three Super Bowls, the Grammys, the ESPY nationally televised Awards Ceremony, CBS Game Day, Inaugural Parades for Presidents William Clinton and Barak Obama, the Honda Battle of Bands, and Walt Disney World’s Fifteenth Anniversary. An invitation was accepted from the French Government, for the Florida A&M University Marching Band to perform at the Bastille Day Parade in Paris, France. Dr. White marching drills were featured in the parade.

Regarded as a foremost authority on college marching bands in the country, Dr. White was in demand for many special guest engagements, including conducting the band in concerts in Carnegie Hall, Chicago’s Orchestra Hall and the New England Conservatory. He also served as coordinator and guest conductor for half time shows at the Orange, Sugar, Gator, Peach Bowls on the staff of Bowl Games of America where he designed halftime shows for College bowl games. He served on the adjudication staff for Music Festivals, USA, and International Music Festivals. He conducted the Florida A&M University Wind Ensemble in concert at the American Bandmasters Association Convention, Florida Music Educators Annual Conferences, CBDNA Southern and National Conventions, and Music Educators National Conventions and numerous other professional platforms across the country.

Among the highlights of Dr. White’s career was serving as Drill Designer for the McDonald’s All-American High School Band. For 10 years, his drill creations were featured at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City, Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California, and the Fiesta Bowl in Phoenix, Arizona.

Dr. White has received every teaching award that the Florida A&M University presents. Among them are the Distinguished Professor/Advanced Teacher of the Year Award, the University Superior Teacher Accomplishment Award, and was a three-time recipient of the University Teacher of the Year Award.

He was also honored to receive the Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, Inc. Service Award. The HBCU Consortium presented him with the 2014 Heritage Legacy Award. He is the recipient of the 2015 Kappa Alpha Psi Man of the Year Award and the Distinguished Alumni Award.

Dr. White holds membership with the prestigious American Bandmasters Association and was named a Florida Bandmasters Association Legacy.

Dr. White was selected as a history maker in 2014. The video interview holds a permanent place in the History Makers Collection, housed in the Library of Congress.

Dr. White was appointed as a band clinician consultant for the Duval County Public School System to rebuild bands in the Jacksonville area.

The City of Jacksonville’s Mayor and City Council honored him with the renaming a street to the “Julian Earl White, Ph.D. Parkway.” The William M. Raines High School named its music suite “The Dr. Julian E. White Fine Arts Complex.”

Post retirement, Dr. White founded and directed the Band of the Big Bend, which is sponsored by the Goodwill Industries. He served as Senior Consultant with Coordinated Services for the Improvement of Education (CSIE) and served as its Leader for the Save Our Bands Initiative.

He continues designing halftime shows for many high school and university bands across the country.

He is married to the former Dennine Mathis who serves as Flute Professor at Florida A&M University. They have one son, Julian Earl White, II. Dr. White has two daughters Tonja Mathews and Phaedra White, and two grandchildren John Burt and Mallory Mathews.

Dr. O'Neill Sanford

Doctor O'Neill Sanford

Mr. O’Neill Sanford has recently retired as Director of Bands at Jackson State University. Since becoming a music educator in 1965, he has held a number of positions to include the following: Visiting Professor of Music, Principal Recruiter and Director of Bands, Jackson State University, Jackson, Mississipi; Sevier High School, Ferriday, LA; Director of Bands, Marching Band Arranger, and Trombone Instructor, Mississippi Valley State University, Itta Bena, MS; Director of Bands, Virginia State University, Petersburg, VA; Symphonic Band and Marching Band Director, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN; Director of Bands, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; and Director of Bands at Norfolk State University, Norfolk, VA. While at Norfolk State, Sanford also served as the Chairman of the Department of Music. Mr. Sanford earned his Bachelor of Science in Music Education from Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA; Master of Music Education, Vandercook College of Music, Chicago, IL; and Studied Jazz Composition with composer and arranger, Thad Jones, Conservatory of Music, Copenhagen, Denmark. He received an Honorary Doctorate from the Conservatory of Music, Mexico City, Mexico; has served as Conductor of “The Youth All-American Band” in Spain, England and Greece, as well as serving as a guest conductor, clinician and performer on tours throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and Europe.

Sanford’s works for the marching band, jazz ensemble and concert band are performed throughout the United States and Europe. The St. Paul Civic Orchestra commissioned his work, " Lift Every Voice ", for orchestra and choir. He wrote The Bicentennial Fanfare for the University of Pittsburgh’s Bicentennial, "Pitt is It!" - a spirit song; The Chancellors March and his 1991 composition, “The President’s March”, which was performed by the United States Navy Band, and is currently performed throughout the United States.

He is the Founder of the HBCU National Band Directors' Consortium and served as the President for fourteen consecutive years, and is Founder and Chief Organizer of the HBCU-"Battle Fest" (Battle of the Bands).

Alfred Watkins

Alfred Watkins

Mr. Alfred Watkins was the Director of Bands at Lassiter since 1982 until his retirement in 2013. He is the current director of the Cobb Wind Symphony.

He has established a fine reputation as an adjudicator, clinician and guest conductor throughout the United States. Under his leadership, the Lassiter Band has grown from its original 78 members to its present size of 350 music students. The program now includes five symphonic bands, two separate marching bands, a jazz band and numerous performing chamber ensembles.

Mr. Watkins, a native of Jackson, Georgia, received his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Florida A&M University, with honors in 1976 where he was a conducting student of Dr. William P. Foster and Dr. Julian E. White. Prior to his arrival at Lassiter, he served for six years as Director of Bands at Murphy High School in the Atlanta Public School System. While at Murphy, his symphonic bands earned consistent superior ratings in Grade VI. As much a teacher as he is a musician, Mr. Watkins was named “Teacher of the Year” in 1978 and Star Teacher in 1982, 1983, 1989, 1994 and l997.

Under Mr. Watkins’ leadership, the Lassiter Marching Band has performed for the following: President Ronald Reagan (twice), 1984 World’s Fair, 1986 and 1995 King Orange Jamboree Parade, the 1988 Tournament of Roses Parade, and will perform in the 1997 Citrus Bowl Parade. The band was featured in the full-length motion picture, “The Leader of the Band,” starring Steve Landesberg. The marching band placed 5th in the 1990 Bands of America Grand National Championships and third place in 1994. In the 1994 BOA National Championships, the band earned the Esprit de Corps Award and earned first place honors in Musical Performance.

The Lassiter Symphonic Band Program has also acquired a fine reputation of musical excellence while under Mr. Watkins’ direction. Previously organized into four symphonic bands, the program has entered 54 symphonic bands into district festival since the school’s inception in 1981. In March 1987, all four symphonic bands earned superior ratings in Grade III, IV, V, and VI. The upper two bands perform Grade VI Literature while bands three and four perform Grades IV and III, respectively. They have performed for the 1986 Georgia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference, 1988 National Band Association Biennial Conference, and in concert symposiums on the campuses of the University of Southern Mississippi, the University of Georgia, Florida State University and the University of South Carolina. In 1989, the Symphonic Band earned the prestigious Sudler Flag of Honor, presented by the John Philip Sousa Foundation and later that same year performed at the Mid-West International Band and Orchestra Clinic. The Symphonic Band received a second invitation to Mid-West in 1996 and performed at the inaugural Atlanta International Band and Orchestra Clinic that same year. Mr. Watkins is a member of Kappa Kappa Psi Band Fraternity, Phi Beta Mu, National Band Association, Black Music Caucus, Music Educators National Conference and World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles. He is on the Band Selection Committee of the John Philip Sousa Foundation. In 1987, Mr. Watkins was inducted as a charter member into the Florida A&M Gallery of Distinguished Alumni. Mr. Watkins has served on the Educational Advisory Board of Bands of America. He currently serves as an adjudicator for Drum Corp International (DCI) and Bands of America. In 1996, Mr. Watkins was an Associate Director for the Atlanta Olympic Marching Band that performed in the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta. He is married with two sons, Christopher and Jonathan.

For more information visit www.alfredwatkins.org

Toyin Spellman-Diaz

Toyin Spellman-Diaz

Oboist Toyin Spellman-Diaz grew up surrounded by her parent’s enormous record collection in Washington, DC. It was there she absorbed the many layers of classical music’s beauty and the inspiring and uniting potential of the world’s diverse cultural landscape.

Ms. Spellman-Diaz earned her Bachelors of Music degree from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and her Master’s and Professional Studies degrees at the Manhattan School of Music. Her orchestral career includes performances with the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Chicago Civic Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.

Hailed by the Washington Post for her “smooth, controlled tone and excellent technique,” Toyin has performed concertos with the Chicago Civic Orchestra, Manhattan Virtuosi, and with the Kennedy Center Youth Orchestra.

An original member of Imani Winds, Ms. Spellman-Diaz has built her career as a champion of contemporary chamber music. Along with her Imani Winds colleagues, she is devoted to discovering new and diverse musical voices and cultures to increase and enhance the woodwind quintet repertoire. She has also collaborated with some of today’s most influential chamber music ensembles, including Alarm Will Sound, the Antara Ensemble and Camerata Pacifica.

Tomisha L. Price-Brock, Ph.D.

Tomisha L. Price-Brock, Ph.D.

B.M. Instrumental Music Education- Virginia State University (2005)

M.M. Music Education- Norfolk State University (2011)

Ph.D. Music Education- University of North Carolina at Greensboro (2020)

An accomplished educator, Tomisha Brock has led superior instrumental and vocal ensembles on the public-school level in Virginia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. A native of Carrollton, Virginia, Tomisha Brock began her education at the age of 3, at the Hampton University Laboratory Institute, and graduated at the age of 16 from Smithfield High School (Smithfield, Virginia). She received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Virginia State University in 2005, a Master of Music Education degree from Norfolk State University in 2011, and has completed additional coursework at Capella University (2012). Dr. Brock received her Ph.D. in Music Education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2020. Dr. Brock has served as Director of Instrumental Music and Coordinator of Music Education at The University of Mount Olive, as Director of Bands at Garfield High School (Seattle, WA), and as Director of University Bands and Assistant Professor of Music at Clark Atlanta University. She holds the distinct honor of being the first female band director at Clark Atlanta University, and in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC). Dr. Brock has also served as Associate Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music at Mississippi Valley State University (2016-2017), and Director of University Bands at Elizabeth City State University (2011-2016).

Dr. Brock was the 2019 Intercollegiate Music Association Symphonic Band Clinician (conference held in Fayetteville, NC), and the 2017 HBCU-NBDC All Star Concert Band Clinician at the annual conference held in Atlanta, Georgia. She was named Spectacular Magazine's 2016 Woman of the Year in the category of Education, and received Elizabeth City State University's “Queen Dominion” Woman of the Year award in 2014. In 2013, she was honored by the Northeastern North Carolina chapter of the National Council of Negro Women, receiving the Black Pearls "Unsung Hero" Award for outstanding contributions in the category of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Brock has served as a guest clinician and adjudicator at several events, to include the MidSouth Regional High Stepping Championships, Northeast Regional High Stepping Championships, North Carolina Show-style Band State Competition, and others. In the community, Dr. Brock is the Founder and CEO of Prodigious Concepts, LLC, and serves as a Praxis II and Educational Consultant, assisting music education majors and current professionals with the tools necessary for success on teacher licensure assessments. She is an honorary member of Tuba Phi Tuba Brass Fellowship, Tau Beta.

Sigma National Honorary Band Sorority, Inc., and Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, Inc. She is an active member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Incorporated and Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity for Women, and holds active and associate memberships in the Norfolk State University Alumni Association, and Virginia State University Alumni Association. She is a Past President of the Intercollegiate Music Association (served from 2015-2017), and maintains professional memberships in the College Band Directors National Association, National Association for Music Educators, Women Band Directors International, and the HBCU National Band Directors’ Consortium. Dr. Brock has one daughter, Lakaiya.

Richard White

Richard White

Richard White began his tuba studies at age twelve at the Baltimore School for the Arts. He then went to the Peabody Conservatory of Music where he received his Bachelor’s degree. He received both his Master’s and Doctoral degrees from the University of Indiana, and became the first African American in the world to receive a DM, in tuba.

Dr. White is currently in his ninth season as Principal Tubist of the New Mexico Philharmonic. He enjoys teaching at the University of New Mexico, where he is Associate Professor of tuba/euphonium and Associate Director of the Spirit Marching Band. Please visit www.rawtubafilm.com to learn more about the award winning documentary in regards to Dr. White’s, inspirational life’s journey.

Paul Adams

Paul Adams

Paul I. Adams holds a Master of Arts in music education from Louisiana State University in 1973. Paul is the former director of bands of Norfolk State University. Recently retired, he worked with a band with over 260 members and he writes the majority of the sheet music and customizes most of the music performed. He’s the co-founder of Historically Black College/Universities National Bank Directors Consortium and a member of the Minority National Band Directors Association and College Band Directors. He attends major band conferences, where he occasionally has to speak at. Growing up, Paul’s mother was a teacher, so pursuing this career path was a natural progression for him. In the next three to five years, Paul plans on going and promoting several universities, financial services and education. He has five children and six granddaughters. His hobbies include traveling and surprising his grandkids. Paul looks forward to connecting and networking with other professionals, and to gaining the recognition and credibility of being a part of the International Alumni Association.

Brandon Patrick George

Brandon Patrick George

New York-based flutist Brandon Patrick George has appeared with many of the world’s leading ensembles including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE). He has performed at Alice Tully Hall, Cité de la Musique, The Kennedy Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and is a frequent recital artist at Bargemusic in New York. An avid chamber musician, Brandon has collaborated with members of the New York Philharmonic, the Jasper String Quartet, and has performed live on New York's WQXR with harpist Bridget Kibbey.

With the LA Phil, Brandon has performed at Walt Disney Concert Hall, and at the Hollywood Bowl, under conductors Gustavo Dudamel, Karina Canellakis, and Ludovic Morlot. Brandon has toured the U.S. and Europe with ICE, appearing at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), the Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago), the Park Avenue Armory (NYC), and the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival in England. His live performances with ICE have been heard worldwide on BBC Radio 3. Brandon's debut album featuring works by Aho, Bach, Boulez, and Prokofiev will be released by Haenssler Classics this autumn.

Brandon is a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music at Oberlin College. He received his Master of Music degree from the Manhattan School of Music, and won the Manhattan School of Music's Concerto Competition. At the invitation of Sophie Cherrier, Brandon continued his studies in France at the Conservatoire de Paris (Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris).

Monica Ellis

Monica Ellis

Bassoonist Monica Ellis is a founding member of the Grammy nominated wind quintet, Imani Winds, who in their 23rd season, continue to make ground-breaking art while maintaining a vigorous international touring schedule.

Monica’s strong work ethic was instilled very early on from her mother and father, the late jazz saxophonist, Clarence Oden. As the administrative director & tour manager for Imani Winds, and Co-Artistic Director for the Imani Winds Chamber Music Festival, she maintains a fulfilling leadership role within group.

A self-proclaimed “band kid”, growing up in her beloved city of Pittsburgh, Monica played clarinet, saxophone and piano. After being introduced to the bassoon in middle school, she realized her potential by studying with Mark Pancerev, of the Pittsburgh Symphony. Ms. Ellis went on to receive her Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, studying with George Sakakeeny. While at Oberlin, her desire to connect with others flourished through her participation in the Panama Project – a month long camp for young Panamanian students. She received her Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School and Professional Studies Certificate from Manhattan School of Music in the Orchestral Performance Program, studying with Frank Morelli at both institutions.

Imani Winds formed in 1997, when Monica along with the four other original members, realized that such a group could fill a significant void in the chamber music world. Imani Winds performs relevant and culturally significant music from last 100 years and the next 100 years and are role models to all, but especially to the community of African-American classical wind players.

Recording credits include 7 albums with Imani Winds (Koch International Classics, EOne and EMI Classics). Monica can also be heard on the following: Edward Simon – Sorrows and Triumphs, Chick Corea - The Continents, Wayne Shorter Quartet - Without a Net, Mohammed Fairouz - Native Informant, Jeff Scott - Urban Classical Music Project, Brubeck Brothers Quartet - Classified, Steve Coleman – Ascension to Light and Perspectives Ensemble - Montsalvatge Mardrigal.

For over 20 years, Ms. Ellis has enjoyed an active freelance career. She has performed with diverse organizations such as the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Absolute Ensemble, Bard Music Festival, Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, Perspectives Ensemble, and Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, just to name a few. She has also soloed with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra.

A passionate teacher, Ms. Ellis has been a visiting professor or on faculty at The University of Chicago, The Hartt School (CT), Purchase (NY) & Brooklyn College Conservatories of Music, Mannes School of Music and The Juilliard School's Music Advancement Program. Also, a renowned clinician, she has given master classes and solo recital performances across the country.

She serves on the advisory boards for Orchestra of St. Luke’s Education Committee and the Meg Quigley Vivaldi Competition & Symposium for Women Bassoonists of the Americas, as well as on the Board of Concert Artists Guild (CAG).

Monica religiously watches Jeopardy!, loves home decorating and resides in the historic village of Harlem in New York City with the greatest joy of her life - her 6 year old son, Oden.

Mark Dover

Mark Dover

Clarinetist Mark Dover is a man of many horns, always striving to have his feet in as many different genres as he can.  While always maintaining firm roots in classical music, he’s also devoted his career to searching as deep as he can into the vast world of improvised music.

Born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Mark was privileged to grow up in a town with a strong commitment to arts education, and with parents who were passionate about the arts.

In addition to performing with Imani Winds, his orchestral appearances include performances with the Detroit Symphony conducted by Leonard Slatkin, the Cleveland Orchestra with David Zinman, the Blossom Music Festival Orchestra and regular performances with the New World Symphony in Miami Beach.

Mark is on the clarinet faculty at Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. He’s conducted master classes at numerous academic institutions throughout the country, including the University of Michigan, the Manhattan School of Music and the University of South Carolina.

Mark has an extensive background in jazz, funk and improvised music. He is a frequent collaborator with Vulfpeck, an American funk band formed in his hometown of Ann Arbor. His duo Port Mande with pianist/producer Jeremy Jordan perform their own original music frequently throughout New York at various venues, including a recent debut at National Sawdust.

A graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy, Mark received his Masters of Music from the Manhattan School of Music and his Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan. His most influential teachers include David Krakauer, Deborah Chodacki, and Jay DeVries.  He lives in New York City with his wife, soprano Faylotte Crayton, and his little girl Lulu – currently learning to walk, talk and cause as much mayhem as possible.

Jeff Scott

Jeff Scott

A native of Queens, NY, Jeff Scott started the French horn at age 14, receiving an anonymous gift scholarship to go to the Brooklyn College Preparatory Division. An even greater gift came from his first teacher, Carolyn Clark, who taught the young Mr. Scott for free during his high school years, giving him the opportunity to study music when resources were not available. He received his bachelor's degree from Manhattan School of Music (studying with David Jolley), and master's degree from SUNY at Stony Brook (studying with William Purvis). He later continued his horn studies with Scott Brubaker and the late Jerome Ashby. Mr. Scott's performance credits are many and varied. They include The Lion King orchestra (on Broadway, New York) 1997-2005, and the 1994 revival of Showboat 1994-1997. He has been a member of the Alvin Ailey and Dance Theater of Harlem orchestras since 1995 and has performed numerous times under the direction of Wynton Marsalis with the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. Mr. Scott is also the french hornist in the internationally acclaimed wind quintet “Imani Winds”.

Mr. Scott has also experienced good fortune as a studio musician. He can be heard on movie soundtracks scored by Terrence Blanchard, Tan Dun and on commercial recordings with notable artists such as Chick Corea, Wayne Shorter, Chris Brubeck, Chico O'Farill, Robin Eubanks, Freddy Cole and Jimmy Heath, among others. Additionally, he has toured with artists such as Barbra Streisand and the late Luther Vandross.

Mr. Scott's arranging and composing credits are many, and include scoring the off-Broadway production of Becoming Something, The Canada Lee Story, the staged production of Josephine Baker: A Life of Le Jazz Hot!, and many original works for solo winds as well as wind, brass and jazz ensembles. His works are published by International Opus, Trevco Music, To The Fore Music and self-published at Music by The Breadman.

Mr. Scott has been on the horn faculty of the music department at Montclair State University (New Jersey) since 2002 and now professor of horn at Oberlin Conservatory of Music.

Herbert Smith

Herbert Smith

Herbert Smith, Musician - Jazz and Classical, Teacher, composer, and conductor. Born and raised in Cincinnati OH, he came to Rochester in 1987 to attend the Eastman School of music, where he got his Bachelor of Music Education and ended up staying. Upon graduating from Eastman he acquired the 2nd trumpet position with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and now holds the 3rd trumpet seat. During his stay at Eastman, he wore two hats. One as an accomplished Classical musician and soloist, the other as a Jazz performer. This proved to be a good move. Herb has been in the Rochester Philharmonic for over 20 years, has performed in Carnegie Hall with the Rochester Philharmonic as well as a soloist, and has had the opportunity to travel abroad. He regularly plays with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Chautauqua Institute Symphony Orchestra and is a soloist/chamber musician around the greater Rochester Area.

On the Jazz side of things, he has a CD entitled The Trumpet Shall Sound (2007) featuring his Jazz Quintet playing reinterpreted jazz standards along with original compositions by Herb. He now has a jazz trio entitled "Freedom Trio" which is more adventurous musically, tapping into many different music forms including Jazz, Classical, Indian, and even more popular styles. This group has performed at the Rochester International Jazz Festival for many years. Freedom Trio has just released some new music melding the blues form with funk. You can grab it here https://freedomtrio.hearnow.com or on Spotify. As a musician in Rochester NY, he has had the opportunity to play with many notable musicians including, Wynton Marsalis, Doc Severinsen, The Ojays', Aretha Franklin, Al Jarreau, and Ben Folds to name a few. Furthermore, when Broadway touring shows come through Rochester, he is hired as lead trumpet for shows, including The Book of Mormon, Wicked, Color Purple, Chicago, and Pippin'2015.

Herb's teaching experience is varied as well, teaching musicians and non-musicians of all ages. He began his Artist and Residence work with the now-disbanded Rochester Chapter of the Aesthetic Education Institute, and is frequently involved in residencies with the Rochester City School District and many school districts in the surrounding areas. Herb also does masterclasses and lectures on trumpet technique, endurance, and sound production; works with high school bands and Orchestras as teacher and soloist, and teaches private lessons out of his home.

As a composer he has been commissioned to write pieces for Brass Ensembles, High School Choirs, Jazz Ensembles, and trumpet Ensembles, all the while composing for his jazz trio. Herb's composition "The twelve tones of Christmas" for trumpet, piano and voice, was premiered in Carnegie hall in 2008. Recently Herb was commissioned to write a ballet for the Garth Fagen Children's Ensemble. It was a 6-part work ranging in many styles including Reggae, classical, Jazz and Funk totaling over 40 minutes in length, a piece for High School Choir SATB that was premiered in 2014 at The Finney School and a fanfare for the dedication of the new Auditorium at Our Lady of Mercy School for Young Women.

Herb's latest venture encompasses conducting. Herb had his orchestra conducting debut with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra in January 2019 leading a show aimed at tearing down the musical hierarchy of classical music and bringing it to the youth. He is a faculty member at the Rochester Institute of Technology where he directs two Jazz bands and is frequently requested to conduct all county big bands in the surrounding counties of upstate NY.

Jack A. Eaddy, Jr., D.M.A.

Jack Eaddy

Assistant Director of Bands, McNeese State University.

Jack A. Eaddy, Jr., a native of Orangeburg, SC, is the Assistant Director of Bands at McNeese State University where he assists with the “Pride of McNeese” Cowboy Band, other athletic bands and conducts the Symphonic Band. Dr. Eaddy also teaches classes in the music education department. Prior to his appointment at MSU, Dr. Eaddy served as Assistant Director of Bands at the University of South Carolina, where he assisted with athletic bands, including the Carolina Band and taught music education courses.

Dr. Eaddy earned the Doctor of Musical Arts in Wind Conducting from the University of North Texas. He holds a Master of Music in Wind Conducting from the University of Georgia, and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Florida State University. As a doctoral conducting associate, Dr. Eaddy conducted all concert groups. He also assisted with the Green Brigade Marching Band, and directed the UNT Grammy Nominated Funky Fresh Basketball Band. As Director of Bands at Oak Ridge High School, Dr. Eaddy developed a flourishing program that was recognized throughout the state of Florida for maintaining the highest standards in spite of the challenges that many of its students experienced. Dr. Eaddy received the Florida Music Educators Association Tom Bishop Award that recognizes a director in the state of Florida who has turned a program around, making a positive difference in a short amount of time.

Dr. Eaddy has presented at several state and national music conferences, including the Midwest Clinic. As a conductor, some of his honors include being a participant in the US Pershing’s Own Army Band’s conducting workshop and being a finalist for the American Prize. Dr. Eaddy is an active drill writer, arranger, adjudicator, and clinician; and was a clinician at the inaugural National HBCU National Band Directors’ Conducting Symposium. His professional affiliations include the National Association for Music Education, the College Band Directors National Association, Kappa Kappa Psi, Phi Beta Sigma, Phi Mu Alpha, and Pi Kappa Lambda, Music Honor Society. Dr. Eaddy has contributed to the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series, published by GIA Music.

Dr. Eaddy and his lovely wife LaShonda, a public relations and strategic communications professor, have two beautiful daughters, Jillian and Jordyn.

Ricky Burkhead

Ricky Burkhead

Ricky Burkhead is Professor of Music and director of percussion studies at the University of Mississippi. He is an active performer, clinician, and adjudicator throughout the U.S. He has also performed in Argentina, Uruguay and Jamaica. He is past president of the Mississippi chapter of PAS, and a roster artist for the Mississippi Arts Commission. He maintains an active private teaching studio and was the first to form steel drum bands in the Mid-South region. His compositions and arrangements are available at JW Pepper and documentary films collaborations can be viewed on YouTube and Vimeo.

His teaching responsibilities include applied percussion, percussion ensemble, steel drum band and salsa band. He has performed with the Memphis, Germantown, Tupelo, Corinth and Delta Symphonies and is active as a clinician, and jazz drummer having performed with Slide Hampton, Allen Vizzutti, Tony Bennett, Mulgrew Miller, Burgess Gardner, Cassandra Wilson, Jimmy Dorsey, Jim Johnson Big Band, Phil Driscoll, Moonstone, John Birdsong, Todd Hill, Alphonso Sanders, The Joy Spring Trio, The Jazz Tones, The Effie Burt Quartet, Caribbean Paradise and The Ricky Burkhead Quartet.

Burkhead has been an instructor for the United States Percussion Camp and a clinician for the Florida Music Educators Conference, Missouri Percussive Arts Society, Mississippi Music Educators Conference, Percussive Arts Society, Mississippi Bandmasters Conference, and Georgia College Day of Percussion. He has performed and recoded music with Slade Lewis for documentary films by Joe York for the Southern Food Alliance, Square Books, the Ole Miss Law School and Micah Ginn.

Dr. Courtney Jones

Doctor Courtney Jones

The newest directions in 21st Century trumpet performance are being explored and defined by Jones, an award-winning Bach solo performing and recording artist who has also emerged as a leading figure in contemporary performance, chamber conducting, pedagogy, and service to inner-city youth through music outreach programs and mentorship.

Dr. Jones is in high demand as a clinician and adjudicator while transcending stylistic boundaries performing throughout North America and Internationally. In addition to his solo performance career, he has performed with the Golden States Pop Orchestra, the Southeast Symphony Orchestra, the Macao Orchestra (China), the Pasadena Orchestra, the Debut Orchestra, the Inspiravi Chamber Orchestra, the Orchid City Brass Band, the Oslo Philharmonic (Norway), the Long Beach Opera, the Chamber Singers of Iowa City, and the Salt-River Brass Band. His feature film and television credits include music performed for “Glee,” “Notes from Dad,” “Cougar Town,” and “Criminal Minds.”

Dr. Jones completed his Doctor of Musical Arts and taught at UCLA, served as Visiting Professor of Trumpet at the University of Iowa, Lecturer of Music at Columbus State University, and is currently the Assistant Professor of Trumpet and Artistic Director of Jazz and Chamber Ensembles at Florida Atlantic University.

Eric Davis

Eric Davis

Hornist, Eric Davis leads a diverse musical life. He is in demand as a soloist, chamber, orchestral and Broadway, commercial recording musician.

Dr. Davis is the former Principal Horn of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Queretaro, Mexico, and La Kamerata, Chamber Orchestra in Greece, and currently performs with the Gateways Brass Collective, the New Jersey Symphony, the Princeton Symphony, and the Vermont Symphony.

He is a 2018 Grammy nominee for the album “The Art of Arrangement” by Doug Beavers and has performed with The Roots on the Tonight Show, Bernadette Peters, Johnny Mathis, Frank Sinatra Jr., Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings.

Dr. Davis is the Horn professor at Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY. His teachers include David Jolley, Douglas Lundeen, and William Brown.

Cameron Jenkins

Cameron Jenkins

Cameron W. Jenkins is the founder of Full Potential Leadership, a international communications platform that coaches innovative leaders to maximize their strengths and reach their full potential.

Before entering the field of education, Cameron graduated from Alcorn State University with a 4.0 GPA, within four years, and absolutely debt free. He holds a Master’s Degree from The University of Mississippi in Music Education.

Cameron’s latest book, “College: Don’t Waste Your Money,” outlines a four-part plan to help college students maximize their college experience and reduce their college debt.

Cameron serves as the Director of Bands at Bayou View Middle School with more than 180 students in their All- Superior middle school band program. He is a life member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.

Cameron and his wife, Lu Jenkins, are church planters. In 2017, they founded Opportunity Church, a multi-ethnic church in Gulfport, Mississippi.