Band Music Instructor
Shawn Halquist is native of northwestern PA and holds degrees in trumpet performance from Edinboro University and SUNY Binghamton, and a teaching certification from Edinboro. From 1985-1997 he taught in the Millcreek Townhship School district in Erie, PA and had the opportunity to teach at all levels. At McDowell HS, he was in charge of the instrumental music program. The McDowell Marching Band was a frequent competitor in BOA events and was a regional finalist several times. In 1997, Shawn became band director at Brockport NY HS. Bands from BHS have garnered accolades on the stage in both concert and jazz performances. In addition to the Band duties at BHS, he teaches music theory and is department chair.The Brockport Schools have been recognized as a NAMM best school district for music education in 2013 and 2015. Shawn was named the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s Outstanding HS Band director for the 2015 school year.
Shawn has written arrangements for all types of ensembles across the country and has designed marching band shows since 1984. He has marched with several drum corps including the Johnsonburg PA Diplomats and Rochester Crusaders and was an original member of the Empire Statesmen in 1983 and was brass caption head in the early 2000’s. He has been judging marching bands, drum corps, and concert and jazz groups for the past 17 years and has served as guest conductor for jazz and concert groups in NY, PA and MD. Shawn currently performs with the Brockport Big Band and the Eastman Music School’s Educators Wind Ensemble.
Shawn and his wife Dee live in Brockport and are proud parents of twin sons Noah-a freelance clarinetist, pianist and composer; and Cody-currently studying french horn performance at Yale University.
Judging Experience: Jon has been judging marching bands for the past seven years with the Tri-State Judges Association out of Decorah, IA. He has also judged many solo & ensemble, jazz and concert band festivals in the upper midwest.
Teaching Experience: Jon has taught for 17 years and is currently the director of music at Spirit of Joy Lutheran Church in Sioux Falls, SD.
Bio: Jon is a graduate of Concordia College in Moorhead, MN with a Bachelor of Music Education degree. Music ensembles under Jon’s direction have consistently been awarded superior ratings at contests. Two concert bands under his direction, have performed at state music educator conventions. Jon lives in Sioux Falls, SD with his wife Devyn and their son.
Currently the Assistant Director at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, Ca. Marched RCC Fall 3 years and was featured trombone soloist. Traveled to BOA twice with RCC and Rose Parade 4 times. Marched the Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps for two years on Euphonium 2010 and 2011. Taught Blue Devils B Drum and Bugle Corps, Pacific Crest D&B Corps, and The Blue Stars Drum and Bugle Corps for two years. Earned Music Education Degree and Jazz Performance Degree from CSULB under Jeff Jarvis. Has been seen on several Television commercials, movies, and tv shows as a performer/background actor. I have written drill for indoor drumline, and marching band.
Jackie Gilley is a retired middle school band director who serves as a consultant, clinician, and judge for many different band & pageantry activities. She is also a mentor for Judges Academy and president of the Stratford Texas Education Foundation. She has judged for DCI, WGI, and BOA as well as several concert band organizations. Jackie is a member of Phi Beta Mu bandmasters fraternity and both the OBA & OKMEA Hall of Fame.
Phil currently serves as a band director for the Waconia School district in Waconia, Minnesota. His duties include conducting 8th- and 9th-grade bands, team teaching high school Wind Ensemble, Marching Band, and Jazz band.
Phil is currently on the instructional staff for the Colts drum and Bugle Corps where he has taught for 8 of the past 11 years. He has also served on the brass staff for Minnesota Brass Drum and Bugle corps from 2009 through 2015. During his time with Minnesota Brass, the corps enjoyed two DCA brass titles as well as a DCA World Championship title in 2011.
In the marching band realm, Phil has become an accomplished drill designer and instructor writing 8-10 competitive and non-competitive field shows each year throughout the country. Bands that have used Phil’s designs have been responsible for eleven state championships.
Phil is an outspoken advocate for music education at all levels and enjoys a busy schedule as a guest clinician, adjudicator, and freelance trumpet player. He studied trumpet performance at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and music education at the University of Minnesota.
Outside of the music world Phil enjoys distance running, Nordic skiing and spending time with friends in the greater twin cities area.
Bill Ratcliff holds a Bachelors degree in Music Education and a Master’s degree in Music from the University of Arkansas. Mr. Ratcliff is a frequent guest clinician and adjudicator in Arkansas and surrounding states. Recently retired, Mr. Ratcliff served as the Director of Bands at Alma HS in Alma Arkansas. Previously he taught at Northside HS in Fort Smith AR , Kimmons Junior High School in Fort Smith AR and at Jonesboro HS in Arkansas. As a professional musician he has performed with the North Arkansas Symphony, Fort Smith Symphony, Ozark Mountain British Brass Band, and The Marshals of Swing Big Band. Mr. Ratcliff’s professional affiliations include the Arkansas Bandmaster’s Association, Arkansas School Band and Orchestra Association, National Band Association, Texas Bandmaster’s Association, Phi Beta Mu International Bandmaster’s Fraternity, American School Band Director’s Association, and was included in the 2002, 2004, and 2006 editions of “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.”
Former University Marching Band Director (NIU) having created the first Drum Corps style college Band. Music arranger and show designers for universities and High Schools. Drum & Bugle Corps experience including Music arranging for Cavaliers and other corps. Former musician/music arranger USAF Drum & Bugle Corps. Music Judge for various groups, past & present: CSJA, DCI, and independent organizations. Currently hosting several National Music Festivals and Executive Director for the ALL-Illinois Marching Band.
Dr. Dominick Ferrara currently serves as Associate Professor of Music Education, Director of the Day Sessions Young Performers Summer Program, and Conductor of the Symphonic Winds at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, where he teaches courses in instrumental music education and conducting. For his work at Berklee, Dr. Ferrara was awarded the Professional Education Division’s Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence in 2008.
Formerly, Dr. Ferrara served as the Founding Director (2003-2006) of the Fairleigh Dickinson University (Teaneck, NJ) Pep Band, the Founding Director (1997-2009) of the Wind Ensemble at Montclair State (NJ) University’s Stokes Forest Music Camp, and Director of Bands (1996-2006) at Lenape Valley Regional High School (Stanhope, NJ). While at Lenape Valley Regional High School, Dr. Ferrara’s bands won 2 USSBA (now USBands) Group I-A All-States Marching Band Championships and received numerous Superior ratings at concert festivals throughout the United States. For his public school teaching, Dr. Ferrara was awarded a Governor’s Teacher Recognition Award by the State of New Jersey Department of Education in 2000 and was named as a 2005 Finalist for the Princeton University Prize for Distinguished Secondary School Teaching.
He holds a BA in Music Education, Summa Cum Laude, from Montclair State University and both an MAT in Music and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Music Education from Rutgers University, where his specializations were Educational Administration/Supervision and Wind Conducting. He is an active adjudicator, clinician, guest conductor, educational consultant, and free-lance performer. Among his many performance credits are concert appearances with The Temptations; Broadway star, Bernadette Peters; the Portland (ME) Symphony Orchestra; and the United States Coast Guard Band and Chamber Players. He is a life member of the National Eagle Scout Association.