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Tim Hatcher Completed his First Ironman Race

Tim Hatcher, Director of Bands at Plainfield North H.S., completed his first Ironman race in July.

Posted on July 21, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Illinois

Clay Thomson Accepted a New Position

Clay Thomson accepted a new position as Choral Director at Delaware Hayes H.S.

Posted on June 20, 2017 in Job Changes, Ohio

Congratulations to Ed and Gretchen Zunic

Congratulations to Ed and Gretchen Zunic, Orchestra Directors at Upper Arlington H.S., on being named the Upper Arlington Civic Association Golden Apple Award Winners!

Posted on July 5, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Ohio

Clay Thomson to be Married

Congratulations to Clay Thomson, Choir Director at Delaware Hayes H.S., who will be married in July.

Posted on July 5, 2017 in Wedding Bells, Ohio

David Hutter and Ilona Widomska are Married

David Hutter, band director at Maine South H.S.,  married Ilona Widomska, band director at Johnsburg H.S., on July 2, 2017.

Posted on July 21, 2017 in Wedding Bells, Illinois

Matt Gaal has Accepted a New Position

Matt Gaal has accepted a new position as Assistant Band Director at Anderson H.S. Congratulations Matt!

Posted on June 14, 2017 in Job Changes, Ohio

James Vaughn as Accepted a New Position

James Vaughn has accepted a new position as the Choral Director at Wauseon H.S. Congratulations James!

Posted on June 14, 2017 in Job Changes, Ohio

Ross Kellan has Passed Away

The following was written by BRT founder, and friend of Ross, Bob Rogers. 

Ross “Corky” Kellan passed away peacefully on Sunday, June 4th surrounded by family after valiantly fighting cancer for 7 years. He was a true man among men and did not have one negative bone in his body. Everyone who met him liked this congenial soul.

Ross taught music at Glenbard East H.S. in Lombard, Illinois where he retired after 33 years as the Director of Bands. He then went on to direct band at Elmhurst College where he was also in charge of student teaching. He was devoted to both teaching music and working with both high school and college students.

I had both the honor and privilege of being a fellow music student and fraternity brother of Corky at Eastern Illinois University. He was an outstanding French horn player in the Symphonic Winds under director, George Westcott.

His bands at Glenbard East HS won numerous awards during his tenure including performing at the prestigious Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic. In 2012 the music wing at Glenbard East High School was dedicated in his honor.

Ross was the beloved husband of Jeri for 45 years; loving father of Erin; and dear brother of Kurt and Jayne. He leaves behind many friends, colleagues and former students who will miss his warm personality and wry sense of humor. He was a legend in his own time.

“Ross, when we think of you and remember you we will do so with fondness and loving hearts.” You will be most certainly missed.

Posted on June 14, 2017 in With Sympathies, Illinois

Jeff Donahue is Getting Married

Congratulations to Jeff Donahue, Band Director at Southeastern H.S., on his upcoming marriage to April Sadler on June 30th!

Posted on June 14, 2017 in Wedding Bells, Ohio

Ben Jaeger Welcomes a Daughter

Ben Jaeger, band director at Madison Memorial H.S., and his wife Allison, welcomed their 2nd daughter, Evaline Rose on April 2, 2017.

Posted on June 14, 2017 in Births, Wisconsin

Guy Blair Welcomes a Grandson

Guy Blair, Travel Consultant at BRT, welcomed a grandson, Matthias Wesley Brandt. He was born on June 1st to parents Josiah and Lindsy Brandt, weighing 6 Lbs. 15 Oz., and measuring 20.5 inches.

Posted on June 14, 2017 in Births, Iowa

Chris Owen Welcomes a Son

Chris Owen, Band Director at Batavia High School, welcomed a son, Thomas Brian, on April 6th.

Posted on June 14, 2017 in Births, Illinois

Chris Betz is Engaged

Chris Betz, Choir Director at Amos Alonzo Stagg High School, is engaged to Robyn Hund!

Posted on May 24, 2017 in Wedding Bells, Illinois

Greg Bimm Celebrates 40 Years

Greg Bimm recently marked 40 years as Band Director at Marion Catholic High School.  Congratulations Greg!

Posted on May 24, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Illinois

Brian Lotter Awarded Teacher of the Year

Brian Lotter, Band Director at Staunton High School, received the 2017 Madison Telco “Teacher of the Year” award.

Posted on May 11, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Illinois

Fritz Streif Welcomes a Son

Fritz Streif, Choir Director at Chardon High School, and his wife Alison, welcomed a son, Luke Wesley, on April 25th. 

Posted on May 11, 2017 in Births, Ohio

Steve Connell to Retire

Steve Connell, Director of Bands at MOC-Floyd Valley High School, will retire at the end of the school year after holding the same position for 42 years.

Posted on May 11, 2017 in Retiring, Iowa

Puja Ramaswamy Welcomes Twins

Puja Ramaswamy, Choir Director at Eisenhower Junior High School, and her husband, welcomed twins Sofie (weighing 5 lbs. 8 oz.) and Rohan (weighing 6 lbs. 9 oz.)  on February 18th.

Posted on April 20, 2017 in Births, Illinois

Our Sympathies to Kim Wigglesworth

Our condolences go out to Kim Wigglesworth, Choir Director at Newark H.S., on the loss of her Mother April 20th.  She was 93 years old.


Posted on April 20, 2017 in With Sympathies, Ohio

Elise van Holsteijn Welcomes a Son

Elise van Holsteijn, Music Director at Central City H.S., and her husband Devin, welcomed a son, Tristan, on January 30th, weighing 7 Lbs. 8 oz., and measuring 21.5 inches.

Posted on April 19, 2017 in Births, Iowa

Dr. Myron Welch Honored by the National Band Association

Dr. Myron Welch received the NBA Mentor Award on Tuesday, March 28. He has been a tremendous friend and musical influence to so many.


Posted on March 30, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Iowa

Greg Wojcik Honored

Greg Wojcik, Director of Bands at Glenbrook South H.S. was honored at the Walt Disney World® Resort for his 38 years of teaching and dedication to his students and profession.

Pictured with his son Aaron and David Smith from Disney Youth Markets. He received an Exclusive limited edition artwork created by famed Disney artist Ducky Williams

Posted on March 29, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Illinois

Derek Bialowas Purchased a New Home

Congratulations to Derek Bialowas, Band Director at Tri-Village H.S., and his fiancé on the purchase of their new home.

Posted on January 23, 2017 in Did You Hear?, Ohio