||Dr. Brad Williamson, Director, Western Thunder Marching Band
Dr. Brad Williamson is the Director of Marching and Athletic Bands at the University of Wyoming. He also serves as Director of the Symphonic Band and teaches courses in music education.
Dr. Williamson received a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Iowa and a Master of Music Degree in Music Education and Wind Band Conducting from Kansas State University. While at Kansas State he was a conducting student of Dr. Frank Tracz. He completed a Ph.D. in music education at The Ohio State University. While at Ohio State he served as Graduate Assistant Director of Marching and Athletic Bands and Teaching Assistant with the School of Music, and was a student of Dr. Jon Woods and a conducting student of Dr. Russel Mikkelson.
Dr. Williamson began his teaching career at Hubbard-Radcliffe High School in Hubbard, Iowa, where he served for six years as Director of Bands. He is a native of Fort Dodge, Iowa, where he played trumpet in the Fort Dodge Senior High Band Program as well as the Karl King Municipal Band.
In 2013 the Wyoming chapter of Phi Beta Mu recognized Dr. Williamson with the “Outstanding Bandmaster Award” for the state of Wyoming. Recently Dr. Williamson was recognized as a “UW Top Prof,” and also received the “Promoting Intellectual Engagement Award” at UW based on student recommendations. He was also recently recognized by the Cowboy Parents Association with the “James C. Hurst Each Student – A Person” award.
Dr. Williamson is a member of the College Music Society, the College Band Directors National Association, NAfME, Wyoming Music Educators Association, Phi Kappa Phi, Kappa Kappa Psi, and Tau Beta Sigma (honorary). He has been an advisor for five European tours with the Iowa Ambassadors of Music.
||Dr. Robert Belser, Director of Bands
A native of Lee's Summit, Missouri, Dr. Belser began his musical training on trumpet then on euphonium as a student Keith House. He earned the Bachelor of Music Education degree from Central Missouri State University studying with Russell Coleman and Robert Gifford. Following his undergraduate studies, he taught instrumental and choral music in Central Missouri. Dr. Belser served as a graduate teaching assistant at the University of Illinois where he studied with Harry Begian, Gary Smith, and Dan Perantoni, and earned the Master of Science in Music Education degree. He was Assistant Director of Bands at Eastern Kentucky University directing the concert band, athletic bands, and teaching music appreciation. Dr. Belser was awarded the Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting from The University of Iowa where he was a student of Myron Welch. He has also studied conducting with Craig Kirchhoff, John Paynter, and Mallory Thompson.
Dr. Belser was honored as a recipient of the prestigious John P. "Jack" Ellbogen Award for Meritorious Classroom teaching in 2000, and has served as a teaching excellence panelist for the UW Ellbogen Center for Teaching and Learning.
Dr. Belser is quite active as a clinician and conductor throughout the country, and as an adjudicator for bands in the West and the Midwest. Under his baton, the UW Wind Ensemble performed for the Western/Northwestern Division conference of College Band Directors National Association receiving acclaim for their sensitivity and musicality in performance. He is a proponent of new music and the process of creativity, and is not only in demand as a conductor but as a clinician for his promotion of positive teaching techniques and advocacy for the arts.
In addition to conducting, Dr. Belser also teaches music education and graduate conducting and literature courses. His research interests include the process of creativity, historic and new wind repertory, and the arts in the process of learning.
||Miss Lisa Aldrich, Color Guard Instructor
Lisa Aldich is in her second season as Color Guard Instructor at the University of Wyoming. Lisa is currently a doctoral student at the University of Wyoming, where she is seeking to become a Family Nurse Practitioner. Lisa was a member of the UW band for five years, and she was a color guard captain for four of those years. Lisa is a graduate of Campbell County High School in Gillette, Wyoming.
||Mr. George Schrader, Graduate Teaching Assistant
Mr. George Schrader is the Graduate Assistant Director of the University of Wyoming Western Thunder Marching Band. Prior to coming to UW, George taught in the public schools in Albuquerque, NM. He is a graduate of Spring Arbor University, and a native of South Haven, MI. George was a mellophone player in Phantom Regiment for the 2002 season.