College of Liberal Arts graduates exhibit many fascinating paths to success. Every year, the School of Music honors one of our alumni as "Outstanding Alumni of the Year." Below is a list of our past recipients. 

Matthew Spradlin (2018 Recipient)

'15 M.M., Music Education

Matthew Spradlin is in his fourteenth year as Director of Bands at Wilmington High School after holding a similar position for three years in the Franklin City School District.  He is a 2001 graduate of Miami University (Oxford, Ohio) where he received his Bachelor of Music Degree and received his Masters in Music Degree from Wright State University in 2015.  In 2004 he was awarded an “Excellence in Teaching” award from the Area Progress Council of Warren County and in 2011 The Williams Award for Excellence in Teaching from the Wilmington Schools Foundation.

In addition to his role at Wilmington High School he frequently serves as Music Director/Conductor for the Wilmington College Theatre Department.  Mr. Spradlin stays active in the Ohio Music Education Association where he serves as an adjudicator, is President-elect for District thirteen, and serves in various leadership roles.

Mr. Spradlin’s ensembles have earned consistent superior ratings at district and state events, have performed at Disney World, Dixie Classic National Adjudicators Invitational, and the Ohio Music Education Association Professional Development Conference in 2009, 2011, and 2016.  Mr. Spradlin holds professional memberships in the Ohio Music Education Association/National Foundation for Music Education, the College Band Directors National Association, the National Band Association, and Phi Beta Mu International Band Fraternity.

Bryan Sharpe (2017 Recipient)

'12 B.M., Music Education
Since graduating from Wright State University in 2012 with a degree in Music Education, Bryan immediately began pursuing career opportunities to utilize his broad interests in music performance, education, and music technology and sought to create a work life for himself that incorporated each of these aspects of his musical training and experience. Assuming that this goal would manifest itself primarily as a teaching role, the job search of the summer of 2012 resulted in a very different outcome.

Bryan came across a posting for an entry-level sales position at The Lorenz Corporation, a prominent music print music publisher of located right in Dayton. Thinking that this position would be a good short-term option to apply his musical training, Bryan applied, interviewed, and was hired during the summer of 2012. The responsibilities of this position mainly included customer service related tasks and processing orders and communicating with sheet music dealers such as JW Pepper, Stanton's, Sheet Music Plus and many others across the country and internationally. After a short time in this position, it became evident that the music publishing industry would offer great potential for Bryan to utilize his broad musical interests. He began studying and observing different publishers and learning about the interests, needs, and traits of Lorenz’ various markets.

As Bryan was beginning his career at Lorenz, he was simultaneously in the process of establishing a relationship with Alfred Music, the second largest print publisher in the country with assistance from now WSU music faculty member, Brody McDonald, Bryan’s former high school choral director. Throughout Bryan’s time at WSU, he worked closely with Brody’s high school groups in writing many arrangements for Kettering Fairmont’s a cappella group, Eleventh Hour, and also directing Kettering’s middle school a cappella group for a number of years. Graciously, Brody introduced Bryan to Alfred’s pop choral editor, Michael Spresser at an OMEA conference where Bryan presented Michael with samples of his work in pop a cappella. This relationship resulted in publication of his first arrangement and helped to accelerate Bryan’s interests and career in the music publishing industry.

As Bryan’s first publication was in the process of being released with Alfred, he applied for an open position in Lorenz’ editorial department in the beginning of 2013. This position included an increased level of responsibility and opportunities to have a more direct impact and involvement in the development and creation of publications and products. Being fortunate enough to have been given this position, Bryan immediately began looking for ways to expand his responsibilities and tailor this position to his interests in ways that would benefit the company, improve processes, and control expenses in addition to the existing responsibilities of managing the production schedules of new product and assisting in fostering relationships with composers and editors that work outside of the Dayton office including some of the most prominent and established names in the industry.  This resulted in phenomenal opportunities that included partnering with the Kettering and Cincinnati Children’s Choirs to record, produce, and mix demo recordings for Lorenz’ educational choral imprint, Heritage Music Press as well as the opportunity to write, arrange, and record accompaniment tracks for best-selling author and educator Artie Almeida’s new book KidStix and Mari Schay’s book series Busy Bodies, Busy Brains. Bryan has also compiled choral collections for the church choral market and edited and produced two new elementary musicals. In addition Bryan regularly travels as a Lorenz representative at various conferences such as ACDA, TCDA, and TMEA and assists to produce recording sessions for new cantatas and anthems alongside the composers, orchestrators, and editors of these works.

For the past year-and-a-half, Bryan has was tasked to partner with a colleague in Dayton to take over a purchased imprint, SoundForth and develop and edit a choral release and work to expand the stylistic range and market reach of our Lorenz’ choral presence. This included the vast responsibilities of reaching out to new composers, come up with composer assignments, and preparing accepted pieces for recording and print through editing and engraving. The revamping of this choral imprint has helped to contribute to Lorenz’ efforts to expand market presence and reach new choral buyers in the church market. As Bryan’s commitment to the music publishing industry became more apparent, he was promoted to Director of Sacred Choral Publications in the Spring of 2016, granting additional oversight in the direction of our various choral imprints and advertising efforts

All the while, Bryan was working to expand his own writing responsibilities and challenging himself to improve and diversify his writing on an individual level. Bryan’s relationship with Alfred was simultaneously continuing with new pop a cappella publications coming out with each release, now totaling nine arrangements that are available from Alfred. Through the generous help and direction from cherished Lorenz colleagues who are prominent composers and editors in the church and secular choral world, Bryan has had the opportunity to do numerous arrangements and compositions both for the school and choral markets, now having a growing list of approximately 25 arrangements and compositions in print ranging from pop a cappella arrangements to school choral compositions and sacred choral anthems.

Outside of Bryan’s work with Lorenz, he is regularly taking commission requests, which have now expanded from solely pop a cappella to both original compositions and traditional choral arrangements. Recently, he was commissioned to write an anthem for Palm Sunday for a Texas church and well as an arrangement for an upcoming performance at The Vatican in March of 2017.

In yet another realm of Bryan’s musical activities, he has directed numerous academic a cappella groups in the Dayton area including the aforementioned middle school group in Kettering, a men’s and women’s high school group in Centerville, and now is a part-time employee of Dayton’s Chaminade Julienne Catholic High school where he directs their top a cappella group, Vega and has led them to succeed in the International Competition of High School A cappella (ICHSA), arranged recorded, mixed, and produced a full-length album, and arranged, recorded, mixed, and mastered a single that was featured on compilation album Best of High School A cappella 2017. Recently, one of Bryan’s arrangements was nominated “Best Professional Arrangement for a High School Group” by the Contemporary A cappella Recording Association. His arrangements have also been performed at event and conferences such as The World Choir Games, ACDA national, KMEA, OMEA, and others.

Bryan genuinely attributes his successes largely to the excellent and diverse education he received from Wright State and the encouragement of his teachers and professors to pursue diverse and practical musical training in both choral and instrumental music throughout the entirety of his career at Wright State. He delights to see the growth in WSU’s music school and honored to be able to call himself alumni of Wright State’s fine music program.


Joseph Hesseman (2016 Recipient)

'99 B.M., Music Education

Mr. Joseph Hesseman has over 30 years of experience performing in professional orchestras and bands.  Some of his professional credits include performances with the Cleveland Pops Orchestra, Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Dayton Ballet Orchestra, Dayton Bach Society, Middletown Symphony, Whitewater Opera Company, Dayton Philharmonic Concert Band, Springfield Concert Band and 31 years as bassoonist with the Springfield Symphony (OH) Orchestra.  No stranger to chamber music, Mr. Hesseman has performed with the Wright State University Faculty Woodwind Quintet and Trio, Wittenberg University Faculty Ensembles, Springfield Symphony Woodwind Quintet and Festive Musique--a contemporary flute and harp duo.  He also has professional credits with numerous jazz, country and pop artists.  Some of these musicians include Doc Severinsen, Lionel Hampton, Johnny Lytle, Anacani, Crystal Gayle, Steve Allen, Glen Campbell, “The Miracles”, and the USO Show Troupe. 

A distinguished retired military band veteran, Mr. Hesseman performed thousands of concerts to millions of audience members throughout the United States, Canada and Europe with various wind ensembles.  During this period, he world premiered numerous compositions and recorded thirteen of these musical works on seven compact disc recordings.  Some of the composers represented include Norman Dello Joio, Ron Nelson, Robert Jager, Keith Gates, Jack Stamp, Stephen Melillo, Jack Gallagher, Robert W. Smith and Charles Sayre.  Mr. Hesseman also performed on the ballet recording Robin Hood, written by Cedarville University Music Professor and Dean, Dr. Steve Winteregg.  Mr. Hesseman was honored for his musical achievements as a two time recipient of the prestigious George S. Howard Citation of Musical Excellence for Military Concert Bands by the John Philip Sousa Foundation as a member of the United States Air Force Band of Flight Concert Band. 

His record as a music educator includes fourteen consecutive years of all his young bassoonists winning superior ratings at OMEA Solo and Ensemble Adjudicated Events.  In 2001, two of Mr. Hesseman’s college bassoonists were honored by being selected for the Ohio Private College Instrumental Conductors Honor Band (OPCICA) which performed at the Ohio Music Educators Conference.  Mr. Hesseman has also served as a Kaleidoscope Orchestra Camp faculty member and coached at the Springfield Youth Symphony Retreats.  In 2009, he formed the Centerville Junior High “Bassoon Hero Ensemble” which was invited as a guest artist ensemble and performed at the 2010 Wright State University Double Reed Day.  Mr. Hesseman has presented numerous master classes throughout the Midwest and was a guest performer at the 2012 International Double Reed Conference held in Oxford, Ohio on the Miami University Campus.

Mr. Hesseman is a graduate from the U.S. Armed Forces School of Music in Norfolk, Virginia and received his Bachelors of Music Education Degree from Wright State University--where he was a music scholarship recipient and a concerto competition winner.  He was also a founding (original) member of the Wright State University Chamber Orchestra.  In 2006, he had the honor of being recognized as one of Wright State University’s outstanding performing music alumni.  A former general music teacher at St. Theresa Local School in Springfield, Ohio, Mr. Hesseman currently serves as a music instructor in the Centerville, Ohio School District and as Adjunct Instructor of Bassoon at Wittenberg University; a position he has held since 1997.

Josh Baker (2015 Recipient)

'09 B.M., Music Education

Josh Baker is the Assistant Band Director at Centerville High School.  His responsibilities at Centerville have included directing the Symphonic Band, Jazz Ensemble 1, Pep Band, and Pit Orchestra.  He has also taught courses on jazz improvisation, music technology, basic music theory, and AP music theory.  He also serves as the assistant director of the nationally acclaimed marching band known as "The Centerville Jazz Band."  The Centerville Jazz Band has been named a Bands of America Regional Champion, Super Regional Finalist, National Semi-Finalist and National Finalist at the Band of America Grand Nationals. He also assists with the Symphonic Orchestra, Middle School Honor Band, Concert Band, and Wind Symphony. He also teaches band at all three middle schools in the Centerville City School District.   In addition to his teaching responsibilities at Centerville High School, he also serves as the Principal Designate for the East Unit of the building.  In 2014, he was awarded the Black and Gold Award of Excellence by his peers at CHS.  Prior to teaching in Centerville, Josh taught grades 5-12 band for the Greeneview Local Schools in Jamestown, Ohio in 2007.

Under his direction, Centerville’s Jazz Ensemble 1 has performed twice at the OMEA Professional Development Conference in 2010 and 2012. The Centerville High School Wind Symphony also performed at the OMEA convention in 2010.  In 2013, the CHS Wind Symphony was one of sixteen high school concert bands throughout the country selected to perform at the Music for All National Concert Band Festival held at Butler University in Indianapolis.  This was the first time that Centerville has performed at this national festival and is only one of four high school concert bands in Ohio to earn this prestigious honor.  While he has taught at Centerville, the Jazz Ensemble has had the opportunity to perform with guest artists such as Dr. Matt James and the Ohio University Jazz Ensemble, the OU Jazz Percussion Ensemble, Greg Abate, DJ Sparr, the Afro-Semitic Experience, James Dapogny, John Harner, and other local artists.  In 2011, The Centerville Jazz Ensemble was invited to perform at Wright State University with the WSU Jazz Ensemble. 

Josh is a 2007 graduate of Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio where he graduated summa cum laude with a bachelors degree in Music Education.  He also earned a masters degree in Educational Leadership from the University of Dayton in 2013.   While at Wright State, he had the privilege of studying saxophone and music education methods with Dr. Shelley Jagow.  He was also mentored by Mr. Matt Spradlin and Mr. Wayne Markworth.  Josh has had the opportunity to perform with the Dayton Philharmonic Concert Band, Dayton Jazz Orchestra, Sinclair Wind Symphony, and the internationally acclaimed Avion Saxophone Quartet from Wright State University.  As a member of the quartet, he has performed at several state and national level conventions.  He is recorded on the first commercial CD release of the Avion Saxophone Quartet titled Avion Saxophone Quartet Volume 1 found on and iTunes.  Josh also received a fellowship to attend the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chamber Music Institute in 2006 where he received coaching with the Chiara String Quartet.  He also had the honor of attending lectures and performing in a master class with the French saxophone virtuoso and professor emeritus of saxophone, Bordeaux Conservatory (France), Jean-Marie Londeix.  Josh was also a two-time WSU Concerto Night Winner and performed as a soloist with the WSU Chamber and Community Orchestras.

Josh has been an active member of the Ohio Music Education Association.   He has served as the Co-Chair of the 2011 OMEA All-State Band.  He also serves as the chair of the OMEA District 12 High School Honor Bands.  Josh holds memberships in the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, the Golden Key International Honor Society, the National Band Association, Jazz Education Connection of Ohio, and the Ohio Music Educators Association.  Josh’s most important job is helping raise his two beautiful daughters Audrey and Anna.  Josh is also very blessed to be married to his wonderful and supportive wife Katie.                           

Andy Miller (2014 Recipient)

'09 B.M., Music Performance

An active performer and passionate educator, percussionist Andy Miller currently co-directs the percussion and world percussion ensembles as an adjunct faculty member at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbannais, Illinois. Originally from Dayton, Ohio, Andy holds degrees in percussion performance from both Wright State University and the University of Illinois where he was named the Swanson Family Percussion Fellow, studying under renowned marimbist William Moersch. At the University of Illinois, Andy won the 2010 concerto competition, performing with both the Wind Symphony and Symphony Orchestra as part of a percussion trio. Navigating the diverse world of percussion with technical and musical precision, Andy has performed in North America, South America, Asia and with groups as diverse as the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, members of the Bang on a Can All-Stars, the Mark Morris Dance Company and the Afro-pop group Rhythm Manding. He was awarded a prestigious Fulbright fellowship from the U.S. Government to Colombia in 2011, where he studied both traditional music from the Caribbean and Pacific coasts as well as contemporary music, completing a series of concerts given in Bogotá premiering newly commissioned works by American and Colombian composers. Andy is currently the percussionist and artistic director of the Archaea Tree Ensemble and a co-founder of the traditional Colombian music group Costas, both based in Urbana, Illinois. Andy has recently accepted an Associate Instructor position at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.

Kyle Young (2013 Recipient)

'05 B.M., Music Education

Kyle Young is a Band Director in the Mason City School District in Mason, Ohio. His responsibilities at Mason include directing middle school concert bands and jazz bands, as well as instructing woodwind and brass courses. He also serves as assistant director of the nationally recognized William Mason Marching Band.

The Mason band program has received numerous awards and honors. The Mason Band is one of only fourteen programs internationally to have received both the Sudler Flag of Honor and the Sudler Shield. These awards are administered by the John Philip Sousa Foundation and are considered to be the highest honors that a band program can receive for excellence in concert band as well as marching band. Mason Middle School band students consistently receive Superior Ratings at OMEA Large Group and Solo and Ensemble Adjudicated Events. Concert bands from Mason Middle School have recently been invited to perform at the 2011 BGSU Reading Clinic as well as the 2013 OMEA Professional Development Conference in Columbus. The William Mason Marching Band has been named a Bands of America Regional Champion, Regional Class Champion, Super Regional Finalist, National Semi-Finalist and National Finalist at the Bands of America Grand Nationals. The Marching Band is also a five-time Mid-States Band Association Champion. Prior to arriving in Mason, Mr. Young taught grades 5-12 band and orchestra courses for the Fairborn City School District in Fairborn, Ohio.

Mr. Young is a 2005 graduate of Wright State University in which he graduated cum laude with a Bachelors Degree in Music Education. In 2010, he received his Masters Degree in Music Education from VanderCook College of Music in Chicago, Illinois. As a student at Wright State, Mr. Young had the honor of studying saxophone, conducting and music education with Dr. Shelley Jagow. Mr. Young was the first student at Wright State to be selected three consecutive times for the Music Department Honors Recital, and was invited to serve as guest conductor of the Wright State University Symphonic Band. As a saxophonist, he has performed with the Dayton Philharmonic Concert Band, Wright State Saxophone Quartet and currently serves as principal saxophone of the Sinclair Wind Symphony. Additionally, Kyle was selected as a finalist for the Air Force Band of Flight.

While at Wright State, Kyle toured nationally for a summer as a trumpet performer with the Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps from Toledo, Ohio. As a member of the Wright State Saxophone Quartet, he has performed throughout the country including the MENC Conference in Providence, Rhode Island and the NASA Conference in New London, Connecticut. As a soloist, he was selected to perform in master class sessions with Dale Underwood, former Principal Saxophonist for “The Premier US Navy Band”; Dr. David Nabb of the University of Nebraska Kearney; Steven Rosenthal of the Amherst Saxophone Quartet; and Jean-Marie Londeix, professor emeritus of saxophone, Bordeaux Conservatory in France.

Mr. Young is a professional member of the Ohio Music Education Association, the National Association for Music Education, the Golden Key International Honor Society, and the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. Kyle is originally from Dayton and currently resides in Lebanon, Ohio with his wife, Kelly and dog Leon.


Joe Mount (2012 Recipient)

'78 B.M. Music Education

Joe Mount earned his BM in Music Education at Wright State University (‘78), and an MA in Arts Administration at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (‘86). While in Cincinnati, he studied horn with Michael Hatfield, principal horn of the Cincinnati Symphony.  He earned an MM in Horn at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Joe worked as a management fellow for the Brooklyn Philharmonic, the Milwaukee Symphony and Cincinnati Composer’s Guild, and accepted a position in 1986 as the Director of Outreach at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, a position he still holds. At UNCSA, Joe manages a variety of statewide and community outreach programs, and also manages the student Career Services office. An active professional musician, he is a hornist in the Winston-Salem Symphony, the Greensboro Symphony, the Carolina Chamber Symphony, and the Giannini Brass ( He is a founder and artistic co-director of the Carolina Summer Music Festival ( ).  Joe lives in Winston-Salem, NC with his wife Martha, a physician assistant (and fellow hornist). He has three children: Michael, Katherine and Eric.

Marla Butke (2011 Recipient)


Dr. Marla Butke is Associate Professor of Music at Ashland University and serves as the Coordinator of Music Education. She received a bachelor’s degree in music education from Miami University, a master’s degree in music education from Wright State University and a doctorate in music education from The Ohio State University. Dr. Butke has taught general and choral music in public and private schools in Dayton and served as the music education specialist at Ohio Wesleyan University. She is a frequent clinician throughout the United States with research interests focusing on reflective practice and Dalcroze Eurhythmics. Dr. Butke was a contributing author to Women and Music  in America Since 1900, an award-winning reference encyclopedia, and has been published in TRIAD, Update, and Enrollment Management.

Dr. Butke holds certifications in the Orff methodology from The Ohio State University and the Dalcroze methodology from Carnegie-Mellon University. Dr. Butke serves as the head of research for the Dalcroze Society of America. Dr. Butke is a member of OMEA’s Curriculum and Assessment Committee and is the General Music Co-Chair for the 2012 state conference.

Kris Kropff (2010 Recipient)

'99 B.M. Music History and Literature

Kris Kropff joined The Lorenz Corporation in 2000 and was named President, Music Publishing in September of 2011. In the intervening decade, Kris learned the music publishing business from the ground up as she served the company in a variety of capacities. Beginning as an Editorial Assistant for various sacred keyboard and instrumental titles, Kris soon developed the position of Editorial Coordinator to help streamline workflows and improve and implement new software applications.
In 2006, her editorial role was expanded to include leadership of the Heritage Music Press General Music catalog. As part of this position, she also served as founding editor of the general music magazine Activate! And her connection to this market further extends into her 2011–2014 term as Industry Representative on the National Board of Trustees for the American Orff-Schulwerk Association (AOSA). In addition to authoring numerous general music resources, Kris has edited more than a dozen textbooks for Lorenz, Heritage Music Press, and Roger Dean Publishing Company and continues to serve as Literary Editor.
Named Vice President, Marketing in 2008, Kris’s responsibilities changed to include developing and directing advertising strategies—print and digital—for our more than 500 new music titles released each year; partnering with resellers throughout the U.S. and Canada on co-operative promotions; attending various industry conventions; and overseeing the company’s sales and service team. In her current position, Kris enjoys facilitating the work of our amazing team of editors, composers, and Dayton staff as we continue on our long-term growth path.
Kris graduated summa cum laude from Wright State University (WSU) in Dayton, Ohio with a Bachelor of Music degree in Music History and Literature. As a student, she performed as part of numerous ensembles, playing clarinet and bass clarinet in Wind Symphony, saxophone in Jazz Band, and reed player for many of the university’s award-winning theatre productions. In 2010, she was named the Music Department’s Alumni of the Year.
An avid reader and fan of books on paper, some of Kris’s favorite authors include Dave Eggers, Nick Hornby, and Margaret Atwood. As for other hobbies, she doesn’t miss a kettlebell workout at The Edge if she can help it; jumped out of a perfectly good plane—twice; has a 1977 Suzuki 650XS motorcycle; and is a licensed open-water diver, which is a great excuse to vacation in watery locales.

(updated 2014)


Michael Bard (2009 Recipient)

'91 B.M. Music Performance

Michael Bard earned his Bachelor’s degree in music from Wright State University and holds a Masters degree in music from Arizona State University.

Michael is an active musician, composer and teacher who resides near Washington, D.C. He has performed as a soloist and with various musical ensembles throughout the United States, Europe, Japan, North Africa, South America, and the Middle East. He has also been featured on various radio and television programs around the world. Michael has performed for many luminaries and dignitaries including former President Bill Clinton, former Vice President Al Gore, United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, former Joint Chief of Staff and former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Mexican president Vicente Fox, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Senator John Kerry (D-MA), Teresa Heinz, Henry Kissinger and former Senator Bob Dole (R-KS), as well as various members of royalty throughout the Middle East. His first recorded solo effort, Illumination, features original compositions for guitar and solo piano, blending a soothing mix of Spanish, Latin and adult contemporary instrumental styles. His composition “Mediterranean Beauty” for two guitars is published by Lathkill Music Publishers, England

Barbara Siler (2008 Recipient)

'86 B.A. Music Education, '88 M.A. Music

In 1986, Barbara Siler received her Bachelor of Music degree in music education from Wright State University, where she double majored in piano and clarinet and graduated magna cum laude. She continued her education at Wright State and graduated with a Master of Music degree in 1988, with an emphasis on clarinet and music education.

Barbara is currently assistant director of bands at Bellbrook High School, and also directs bands at Bellbrook Middle School; both are secondary schools within the Sugarcreek local schools system. She is the director of the high school symphony band, assists with the wind ensemble and marching band, the director of the clarinet choir, and the director of the pit orchestra for musicals. Barbara also teaches beginning band, honors wind ensemble and two symphony bands at the middle school. She has been a music teacher in the Sugarcreek local schools since 1988 and has taught elementary music, middle school choir, and high school choir. She has a small private studio at home, giving both clarinet and piano lessons.

Barbara is currently a member of the Ohio Music Education Association and the Music Educators’ National Conference. She is happily married to her husband, Michael, who has written original compositions and arranged music for Bellbrook’s marching band for many years. They live in Centerville with two amazing Shetland sheepdog children, Maestro and Coda.


Margaret Erin (2007 Recipient)

'90 B.A. Music, '02 M.A. Humanities

Margaret Erin studied viola da gamba with Patricia Olds at Wright State University graduating with a B.A. (music, magna cum laude). Later, she earned a Master of Humanities degree from Wright state and was the recipient of the Outstanding Humanities Graduate Student Award for 2002. Margaret directs, and plays recorder and viola da gamba with Win in the Woods Early Music Ensemble, a group she started in 1990. Margaret also directs a student early music ensemble at the University of Dayton, teaches recorder at her home studio and is proprietor of Manorhouse Music, a small business selling music for early instruments.

Margaret started playing the recorder as a child in England. She enjoys doing historical research and writing scripts for Wind in the Woods performances. Under Margaret’s leadership, Wind in the Woods has played extensively in the Dayton area and beyond, and has produced two CDs. The group performs regularly at WSU Madrigal dinner and has performed for the Department of Music.

Margaret serves on the Music Alumni Advisory Committee, is active in her church, likes to work in the garden, reads extensively, and is currently studying viola da gamba with Annalisa Pappano.

Margaret met her husband, Tim, when he was on a post-doctoral research fellowship at Southhampton University; at the time, she was the head nurse of a neurosurgical ward. Margaret came to the United States in 1971 and has been living in Dayton since 1976. Tim and Margaret have two children, Chris and Suzanne.

Steven Hauser (2006 Recipient)

'73 B.M. Music Education

Steven Houser is Professor of Music and Past Interim Chair at Lincoln University, in Jefferson City, Missouri.  He is the Conductor/Music Director of the Jefferson City Symphony Orchestra.  Dr. Houser is past-president of the Mid-Missouri Music Teachers’ Association, past-president of the Missouri Music Teachers’ Association, past-President of the Capitol City Council on the Arts and past-Reader/Selector for the Missouri Fine Arts Academy.  He is a Missouri certified woodwind adjudicator and is a national certified Music Teachers’ National Association woodwind instructor.

He wrote and developed a Bachelor of Science degree, with emphasis in Sacred Music, which was subsequently approved by Lincoln University, the State of Missouri, and NASM.  Students are now matriculating and graduating through this degree offering.  Dr. Houser is a certified Methodist Choir Director and a certified Presbyterian Choir Director.

He has been a performing member of the Air Force Band (Wright-Patterson AFB) and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra.  He has performed orchestra solo works both on alto saxophone and bassoon, and he performed on bassoon in international orchestras in Italy, Austria, Hungary, and Switzerland.  Dr. Houser also performed on soprano saxophone for the school children in Cairo, Egypt and is a 1995 Fulbright Scholar-Egypt.  He states, “None of the above and many other musical and research opportunities would have been possible without my Wright State undergraduate studies and my most musical wife Jan.” Jan Houser, a noted pianist, accompanist, and piano instructor was recently honored by being selected the Missouri MTNA Teacher of the Year.

The Housers have one son, Steven, a very nice daughter-in-law, and two very special grandchildren, Steven and Emily.

Wanda Coalson (2005 Recipient)

'78 B.M. Music

Nancy Feld and Wanda Coalson met in the Music Department at Wright State where they were studying piano with Dr. Barbara Foster. After graduating over 25 years ago (Nancy, ’84 BA, Wanda ‘78BM), they remained friends and began to explore four-hand piano literature together. For over twenty years, they have given performances ranging from lecture recitals for professional piano teacher organizations to entertaining for the Opera Guild and the Wright Patterson Foreign Liaison Officer’s Ball. In 2001, they were invited to perform in Bonn, Germany and received outstanding newspaper reviews there. Wanda and Nancy performed at Wright State University for the Steinway Dedication Series to a sold out audience, and in April of 2004 they played at the Wright State ARTSGALA.

After graduation, Wanda continued piano studies with Barbara Foster, and later with Barbara Wasson. She presided as Beavercreek Piano Teacher’s Chairman for the National Guild of Piano Teachers, and was also a Guild Adjudicator for over 20 years; judging in both piano performance and composition. Wanda chaired a campaign to purchase a piano for the Beavercreek Community Room and was a panel member for Wright State’s Careers in Music, representing the Private Studio Teacher. Wanda has given workshops at Wright State and for OMTA on setting up group teaching in the studio. Her studio has consisted of as many as fifty students, all ages and levels.

Besides duet playing, Nancy has studied fortepiano with Richard Fuller in Vienna and has performed on her harpsichord and fortepiano for the Dayton Bach Society, a Mozart Symposium sponsored by the Ohio Arts and Humanities Council, the Dayton Chamber Society and at the Dayton Art Institute. She has combined her degrees in Art (’69 BA, University of Iowa) and Music to give lecture performances on Impressionism, and has recently been a presenter in symposia at the Inn at Honey Run in Eastern Ohio, first on Impressionism (2004) and then on the Italian Renaissance (2005). She has also been a guest lecturer in a course entitled “The Psychology of the Arts” at the University of Dayton. Nancy maintains a private piano studio of about twenty students.

Nancy Feld (2005 Recipient)

'84 B.A. Music

Nancy Feld and Wanda Coalson met in the Music Department at Wright State where they were studying piano with Dr. Barbara Foster. After graduating over 25 years ago (Nancy, ’84 BA, Wanda ‘78BM), they remained friends and began to explore four-hand piano literature together. For over twenty years, they have given performances ranging from lecture recitals for professional piano teacher organizations to entertaining for the Opera Guild and the Wright Patterson Foreign Liaison Officer’s Ball. In 2001, they were invited to perform in Bonn, Germany and received outstanding newspaper reviews there. Wanda and Nancy performed at Wright State University for the Steinway Dedication Series to a sold out audience, and in April of 2004 they played at the Wright State ARTSGALA.

After graduation, Wanda continued piano studies with Barbara Foster, and later with Barbara Wasson. She presided as Beavercreek Piano Teacher’s Chairman for the National Guild of Piano Teachers, and was also a Guild Adjudicator for over 20 years; judging in both piano performance and composition. Wanda chaired a campaign to purchase a piano for the Beavercreek Community Room and was a panel member for Wright State’s Careers in Music, representing the Private Studio Teacher. Wanda has given workshops at Wright State and for OMTA on setting up group teaching in the studio. Her studio has consisted of as many as fifty students, all ages and levels.

Besides duet playing, Nancy has studied fortepiano with Richard Fuller in Vienna and has performed on her harpsichord and fortepiano for the Dayton Bach Society, a Mozart Symposium sponsored by the Ohio Arts and Humanities Council, the Dayton Chamber Society and at the Dayton Art Institute. She has combined her degrees in Art (’69 BA, University of Iowa) and Music to give lecture performances on Impressionism, and has recently been a presenter in symposia at the Inn at Honey Run in Eastern Ohio, first on Impressionism (2004) and then on the Italian Renaissance (2005). She has also been a guest lecturer in a course entitled “The Psychology of the Arts” at the University of Dayton. Nancy maintains a private piano studio of about twenty students.

Marilyn Smith (2004 Recipient)

'83 B.M. Music History and Literature

Marilyn Smith entered Wright State University in 1976 as a “non-traditional” student in the Department of Music. Her first degree was a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Michigan in 1956. It had always been her desire to pursue a music degree. It took a lot of perseverance and seven years as a part-time student while raising her family to finish her degree, a Bachelor of Music in History and Literature, cum laude, in 1983.

While at Wright State, Ms. Smith studied voice, piano, and harpsichord, eventually settling on a semi-professional career goal as a harpsichordist. Following graduation, she spent twelve summers at Oberlin College as a harpsichordist at the Baroque Performance Institute, and ten summers at the University of Michigan for harpsichord workshop studies with Professor Edward Parmentier. She feels she owes her professional skills to Julane Rodgers and Martha Folts, her inspirational harpsichord teachers. Her mentors at Wright State were Professor Charles Larkowski and Professor Martha Wurtz.
Since graduation, Ms. Smith’s life has centered around harpsichord performing and arts volunteering. She has held board positions with the Dayton Opera Guild, the Dayton Bach Society, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra and the Dayton Philharmonic Volunteer Association. She is a member of the Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity, holding the position of Province Vice-President from 1984-90. She was a member of the Dayton Bach Society for over 22 years as a singer; one of her proudest accomplishments with the Bach Society was spearheading a drive to raise funds to purchase a chamber organ to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the society. The group raised $27,000 in less than two months.

Ms. Smith’s volunteer work with the DPVA has been primarily in the Educational programs. She has been a docent since 1993 working to bring music knowledge to elementary school students and prepare them to attend the DPO Young People’s Concerts; for many years she also wrote the scripts for these presentations. Her music history degree assisted her greatly. In 2001-2003 she held the position of President of the Dayton Philharmonic Volunteer Association. She is currently Vice-President and advisor of this organization.

During Ms. Smith’s term of office the DPVA ran three successful fund-raisers, the 2001 and 2003 Designers Show House & Gardens, and the 50th Anniversary International Gourmet Gala. These events enabled them to contribute over $75,000 each year to the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra. They also awarded scholarships to the young musicians in the Miami Valley which totaled over $12,000 each year and assisted the orchestra in presenting the most educational offerings of any orchestra in the country! She is currently in her first year of a three year term as a member of the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra Board of Trustees.

Ms. Smith is honored to have been chosen by Wright State University for it’s Department of Music’s 2004 Outstanding Alumni Award. Although her life since graduation has centered around arts volunteering and not full time employment, she knows that her degree from Wright State has made it all possible. It has been very rewarding for her to have a part in bringing music appreciation to the young people of our community. Her choral experience with the Bach Society and harpsichord performances have fed her soul and she feels very blessed. She feels that this award is really in honor of all the many arts volunteers in this community.

Diane Orlofsky (2003 Recipient)

'82 M.Mus.Ed.

Diane DeNicola Orlofsky is Professor of Music and Music Education at Troy State University, where she has taught for over 18 years. Diane earned her Ph.D. in Music Education form Florida State University in 1986. She is the music education methods specialist at Troy State and her articles on teacher education and keyboard training have appeared in the Music Educators Journal The Journal of Research in Music Education, The National Forum, Contributions to Music Education, Piano Pedagogy Forum, Teaching Music, Clavier, and The Bulletin of Research in Music Education.

William Wittman (2002 Recipient)

'77 Master of Music

William Wittman earned his bachelor's degree from Ohio University in 1975, completed his master's degree from WSU, and did post-graduate work at Ashland University, The Ohio State University, and Ohio University. He served as Graduate Assistant in Instrumental Music at Wright State University from 1975-77. Bill was the first class of graduates from the Master of Music degree program at WSU.

Victoria Ullery (2001 Recipient)

'84 B.M. Music Education

A music educator in the Northridge Local Schools, Dayton, Ohio since 1986, Victoria L. Ullery earned a Bachelor of Music in Music Education with Honors, Cum Laude from Wright State University in 1984, a Master of Music in Clarinet from the University of Cincinnati, College Conservatory of Music in 1986 and a Master of Divinity from Bethany Theological Seminary in 1999.  In 2001, the Wright State University Department of Music selected her as the Outstanding Music Alumni Award recipient.

As the first honors student to graduate from the Wright State University Department of Music, her honors project “Frank Simon: History and Influence” was published in the Journal of Band Research in 1988. In addition to her advisor, Francis H. Laws III, at Wright State University, she also worked with Dr. David Simon, son of Frank Simon and Paul E. Bierley, internationally known band historian and scholar, and author of several books on John Philip Sousa.  Her book entitled The Band That Plays Rain Or Shine! The Story of the Dayton Philharmonic Concert Band: The First Twenty-five Years was published in 2011 by Whotkee R. WeYin Publishing.

Since 1987, she has been a member of the clarinet section of the Dayton Concert Band/Dayton Philharmonic Concert Band. Her clarinet teachers have included David L. Keener, Anthony Gigliotti, Carmine Campione, and Randall Paul.  Professional memberships include the Ohio Music Education Association, Music Educators National Conference/National Association for Music Education and Sigma Alpha Iota.

In addition to her musical career, she is an ordained minister in the Church of the Brethren and the Associate Pastor at the New Carlisle Church of the Brethren in New Carlisle, Ohio.  She also serves the Church of the Brethren nationally and the Southern Ohio District providing leadership and music direction.  She is the co-founder of the New Carlisle Leadership Academy and Whotkee? Remnant Band.

Elizabeth MacConnell (2000 Recipient)

'91 B.M. Music Performance (nee Graham)

Steve Hampton (1999 Recipient)

1980 B.M.

“I love composing music of all styles and recording in great studios, working with incredible musicians.”

You may have heard Steve Hampton’s music without knowing it. As part-owner of Emotomusic in Santa Monica, California and Chicago, Illinois, he has composed and produced music for countless TV commercials, including Adidas World Cup, Altoids, Toyota, Sherwin Williams, Cingular, Sierra Mist, Burger King, and Dodge. He also scored the music for TV shows such as Just Shoot Me (NBC), Greg the Bunny (FOX), and Last Comic Standing (NBC).

“The best thing I came away with from Wright State was the ability to learn and learn fast,” Hampton says. “There are a lot of different music styles out there and I have to be able to emulate them in a very convincing way, very quickly. Developing my listening skills in college has been extremely useful.”

Favorite WSU Memory:  Me and my two classical guitar buddies wearing bright white Chuck Taylors with our black tuxes during a recital of our guitar trio in the concert hall. Our guitar instructor was not amused!

Best Advice:  “Never give up!”

Mark Twehues (1998 Recipient)

'78 B.M. Music Performance

Sharon H. Vander Gheynst (1997 Recipient)

'82 M.M. Music Education (formerly Nelson)

Sharon H. Nelson, professor emeritus of music and former associate dean of the College of Liberal Arts, has served as an accompanist and an adjunct faculty member. Her responsibilities have included teaching applied piano, music education methods courses, and other undergraduate and graduate courses in music education. She has served as coordinator of music education and as director of graduate studies. Her undergraduate and doctoral degrees are from the University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music and a M.M.E. degree from Wright State.

Peter Rauch (1996 Recipient)

'84 M.M. Music Education

Matthew Borger (1995 Recipient)

'81 B.M. Music Education

Steven Winteregg (1994 Recipient)

'79 M.M. Music Education

Dr. Winteregg holds degrees from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Wright State University and The Ohio State University. He studied composition with William Steinhort, Gregory Proctor and Thomas Wells.

Steven Winteregg has received dozens of awards in composition.  Among his awards are First Prizes in the New Louisville Brass Quintet Composition Competition, the "Joy of Life" Composition Competition, the International Horn Society's Composition Competition and the International Trumpet Guild’s Composition Competition.  He is a recipient of the Raymond Hubble/ASCAP Award and has received an ASCAP Plus Award in Composition every year since 1988. He has also received awards from the Montgomery County Arts and Cultural District, the Ohio Arts Council, the Ohioana Library Association and has received an Ohio Senate Resolution commending him for his contribution to the arts in Ohio.

He is the composer of four ballets, and his orchestral pieces have been performed by orchestras such as the Cincinnati Symphony, the Columbus Symphony, the Czech Radio Symphony, the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, the Delaware Symphony, the Indianapolis Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony, the Orchestra of Augsburg and the Sarajevo Philharmonic. His compositions have been recorded by the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, the Czech Radio Symphony and the United States Air Force Singing Sergeants. His recordings can be found on the Albany, Integra, Equilibrium, and the MMC labels. Winteregg's compositions are published by Bocal Music, Edition Musicus,  Pasticcio Music, The Hornist's Nest, Integra Music, MMB Music, Roger Dean Music, Southern Music and The Tuba Press.

Jerome Rodenfels (1993 Recipient)

'81 B.M. Music Education

James McCutcheon (1992 Recipient)

'78 B.M. Music Performance; '91 M.M. Music Education

Jim McCutcheon, faculty associate in guitar, is listed on the Ohio Arts Council Touring Roster. He holds a B.S. in physics from the University of Dayton, a B.M. in guitar performance and a M.M. in Music Education from Wright State University.

In 1991, he was the first recipient of the WSU Music Department Distinguished Alumni Award for his achievements as a musician, music teacher, and arts advocate. He also received the 1992 School of Graduate Studies Outstanding Alumni Award.

He received two Montgomery County Culture Works Individual Artist Fellowships for composition, a Parents’ Choice Foundation Silver Award for his CD “A Day with the Guitar Man,” a Muse Machine Prism Award and he was inducted as a Sigma Alpha Iota Friend of the Arts.

He has written several method books for guitar instruction, numerous compositions, and several articles for guitar journals in the USA and England. He currently reviews recordings for Soundboard, the quarterly publication of the Guitar Foundation of America, and he has produced a weekly classical guitar program, “The Intimate Guitar,” on Dayton Public Radio for over twenty years. He is Guitar Advisor to the National Federation of Music Clubs, president of the Dayton Classical Guitar Society and is also Director of Concerts at the Dayton Art Institute.