DAVID WILLSON is in his twenty-sixth year as Director of Bands at the University of Mississippi. Under his leadership the band has developed into a truly outstanding university band and has doubled in membership. A Jackson, MS native who attended Provine High School and the University of Mississippi, Mr. Willson has directed bands in Mississippi at Independence, Columbus and Clinton. His bands have consistently won awards at the state and national level. Mr. Willson was awarded the A.S.B.D.A. Outstanding Young Band Director Award in 1985 and in 1990 the Mississippi Bandmasters Outstanding Band Director of the Year. Willson worked on the Mississippi Lions All-State Band Staff five times including serving as head director in 1995 when the All-State Band won the international parade in Seoul, Korea. He has served as president of the Mississippi Bandmasters, Mississippi Delta Chapter of Phi Beta Mu, the state chair of C.B.D.N.A., and served four years on the N.F.I.M.A. national board. He is now currently serving as the International President of Phi Beta Mu. Willson is active nationally as a conductor, adjudicator and speaker. Mr. Willson conducts the UM Wind Ensemble and instructs music education and various courses within the music department. His “Band Calisthenics” and “Starting Beginning Bands” books are used extensively throughout the Mid-South. Mr. Willson was the 2005-2006 recipient of the Frist award for outstanding service to students and is the 2006-2007 recipient of the Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teacher Award for the University of Mississippi.
RANDY DALE, originally from Olive Branch, MS, is in his eighth year as the Assistant Director of Bands The University of Mississippi. Mr. Dale is the Director of Athletic Bands, Conductor of the UM Concert Band, and is responsible for all on-line communications for the Ole Miss Band. Mr. Dale also teaches courses within the music department, including Instrumental Arranging, Percussion Methods, and Fundamentals of Conducting.
Mr. Dale earned a Bachelor’s degree in music education from The University of Mississippi in 2001. He served with the Ole Miss Band as a graduate assistant for one year before becoming the Director of Bands at Northpoint Christian School (NCS), formerly known as Southern Baptist Educational Center (SBEC) in Southaven, Mississippi in 2002. Mr. Dale continued studying through the University of Mississippi to earn his Master’s degree in Music Education in 2005. He is a proficient music arranger for Marching and Concert Bands, and arranges for band programs throughout the mid-south area. Mr. Dale serves as an adjudicator for marching band competitions and indoor percussion competitions throughout Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas. He holds memberships in The Mississippi Bandmasters Association, The College Band Directors National Association, The Music Educators National Conference, The Percussive Arts Society, and The Texas Music Educators Association.
In eight years as the Director of Bands at NCS, Mr. Dale was able to produce outstanding results that were unprecedented for the program. Under his direction the band tripled in size and won numerous awards and superior ratings at marching contests throughout Mississippi and Tennessee. Mr. Dale has produced students that have made the Mississippi Lions All-State Band and who have participated in World Class drum and bugle corps. In 2005 Mr. Dale was awarded SBEC Teacher of the Year by the Staff and Administration.
UM Band Graduate Assistants
Tracee Brooks – Ripley, MS.
Tracee attended Itawamba Community College for two years where she was a member of the All-American Marching Band. Tracee received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education (cum laude) from the University of Mississippi in May, 2017. During her time at Ole Miss, she was a member of the Gamma Beta Phi honor society, the LOU Symphony Orchestra, the Student Woodwind Quintet, the UM Wind Ensemble, the Basketball Pep Band, and the Pride of the South Marching Band. During her time as a member of the Pride of the South, she played the mellophone for two years and served as one of the drum majors for one year. Tracee participated with Music City Drum and Bugle Corps (2013) and was a member of both Impact of ICC and Magnolia Independent (2013-2015) as a member of the color guard. Tracee is an alumnus of the Alpha Omega chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota. Tracee is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Music Education.
Jiwon Lee – Oxford, MS.
Jiwon is originally from Daejeon, South Korea. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance (Magma Cum Laude) from the University of Mississippi in May, 2018. During her time at Ole Miss, she played piccolo in the marching band, and she became the first international student selected as drum major, a position she held for two years. Jiwon has also served as the president for the Korean Student Association; worked in the UM Office of International Programs; and conducted campus tours to others in her native language. Jiwon has performed with the UM Wind Ensemble, the Basketball Pep Band, the Opera Theatre Pit Orchestra, and she has served as the concertmaster for the LOU Symphony Orchestra. She has served as the president for the UM chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota International Music Fraternity. She was inducted into the Hall of Fame at Ole Miss in 2018. She was the 2017 recipient of the Marcus Guinn Spirit Award. Jiwon is currently pursuing Master’s Degrees in Music Education and Music Performance.
Sarah Mounce – Mooreville, MS.
Sarah is a first-year graduate student at Ole Miss. She attended Itawamba Community College for three years, where she received an Associates of Arts Degree. While there, she was a member of the ICC All-American Marching Band and the Wind Ensemble. Sarah received her Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from the University of Mississippi in May, 2018. During her time at Ole Miss, Sarah was a member of the LOU Symphony Orchestra, the UM Wind Ensemble, the Basketball Pep Band, the Pride of the South Marching Band, and served as president of the Alpha Omega chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota. She was inducted into the University of Mississippi’s Who’s Who Class of 2017-2018. Sarah plays French horn and mellophone. Sarah is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Music Education.
Percussion – Randy Dale
Color Guard – Megan Walls
Rebelettes – Rachel Levetzow
Arrangers – Ryan Todd, Randy Dale, Tom Wallace, and Courtney Mosley
Visual Designers – Alan Alexander, Alan Temby
Band Secretary – Kristi Boggan