Instructional & Design Staff
We annually contract an expert part-time staff of specialists, many of which are regionally and nationally recognized.
Paul Glader is an active educator, performer, and composer/arranger in the Greater Cincinnati area. Born in Akron, Ohio, Paul is a graduate of Ellet High School and the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music with a bachelor’s of music in education. He has taught band at Gray Middle School (Union, KY), Taylor High/Middle School (Cleves, OH), and in the New Richmond school district. As an arranger and composer, he has written for beginning bands, high school bands, and collegiate bands in the region, as well as regularly writing for his own brass band, The Cincy Brass. Paul is an active performer on saxophone in The Cincy Brass, The Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, The Blue Water Kings, and also does freelance work.
Dr. John Leonard is currently the Assistant Director of the University of Minnesota Marching Band. John studied at University of Massachusetts at Amherst where in 2002 he earned a Bachelor of Music in Education degree and a 2013 Masters of Music in Jazz Composition and Arranging degree. He has previously served as the athletic band director at Northeastern University and the interim Director of Athletic Bands at Western Michigan University. A Master of Music in Conducting degree was earned from Western Michigan University in 2018. His doctoral conducting work was completed at the University of Kansas in 2021.
Drill Designer and Marching Technique/Winds Instructor
Brian Soules has over 30 years of experience in the pageantry arts. He designs, judges and consults for high school and college marching bands throughout the region and nation. He is a professional educator currently serving as a social studies teacher at Boone County High School (KY).
Currently with the Cavaliers, from 2012 to 2018 Brian was a member of the Carolina Crown visual staff where he helped Crown win the DCI World Championship in 2013 and the John Brazale award for best visual performance in 2012, 2013, 2016.
Prior to working with Crown, Brian has also worked with several other Finalist corps including the Bluecoats (1999-2000, 2008-2011), the Santa Clara Vanguard (2002-2006), and the Crossmen (1995-1998).
As a performer, Brian was a mellophone in the Star of Indiana drum and bugle corps from 1987 to 1993 winning the DCI World Championship in 1991. Brian also was a member of the 1993 San Jose Raiders winter guard winning the WGI Independent World Class Championship that season.
Jacob Forte is a trombonist and educator from Fort Wayne, Indiana. He’s been involved in the marching arts as a performer and teacher since 2013 and during that time he’s had the privilege to act in a myriad of different roles ranging from brass or visual director to anything in between in programs across the Midwest. Jacob is currently studying under Tim Anderson, pursuing a master’s degree from CCM in trombone performance.
Coordinator of Battery, Front Ensemble, Concert, and Jazz Percussion
Alex Beltran is an active writer, teacher, performer, and clinician from New England, now based in Miamisburg, Ohio. He holds a Masters Degree in Music History from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he also received an undergraduate degree in Percussion Performance.
While at UMass, Alex was a member of the Minuteman Marching Band Battery in the tenor line from 2010 through 2013 where he was battery section leader during his final season. During his graduate studies, he served as Teaching Assistant to Thom Hannum from 2014 to 2016 where he worked primarily with Front Ensemble. From 2016 through 2019, Alex worked as the primary instructor for the UMass Drumline, where he arranged the music alongside Thom Hannum and Colin McNutt and facilitated daily rehearsals for the entire percussion section.
Alex is currently the Battery Caption Manager for the Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps, where he handles the daily teaching, equipment, and logistical needs of the battery and coordinates the teaching staff. He is also the Battery Arranger and Caption Manager for WGI Independent World Finalist United Percussion, and the Battery Arranger for 7th Regiment Drum and Bugle Corps. Since moving to Ohio, Alex has taken over as the percussion director and in-school percussion specialist for the Miamisburg School District.
Alex proudly endorses Vic Firth sticks and mallets, and Zildjian Cymbals.
Color Guard Choreographer
Originally from New Berlin, WI, Heather Graham currently resides in Miamisburg, Ohio. Heather has been involved in the marching arts since the age of three, beginning with a successful career in baton twirling and rhythmic gymnastics. Heather was recruited by her high school guard at the age of 12 and has since been performing in the color guard activity. While continuing to be a consistent member in the activity, she graduated from the University of Milwaukee with a degree in Communications and a minor in biology.
Heather is a proud alumni of drum corps, performing in 2010 with Phantom Regiment, and in 2011 and 2012 with Carolina Crown. She marched five years with New Berlin Eisenhower HS, six seasons with Velocity Winter Guard, and five seasons with the Pride of Cincinnati 2013-2017.
Heather currently serves as the Colorguard Director for Miamisburg High School and Choreographer for the University of Cincinnati. She has instructed various marching programs across the Midwest, including Eisenhower HS, Franklin HS, Friendswood HS, Marcus HS, Miami University, Northmont HS, Origins, Sycamore HS, Troy HS, Westerville HS, Shadow DBC, Virtual Drum and Bugle Corps, Calgary Stampede, INspire, as well as the 2016 Carolina Crown.
Currently, Heather is a designer/choreographer and head technician for the Boston Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps and has served in this capacity for the past four seasons.
Brittany Ziegler is a native of St. Louis, Missouri. At the age of three she began twirling for Kelly’s Kuties Baton and Pom Corp. She competed within the National Baton Twirling Association (NBTA) throughout high school and into college, achieving several state and national titles. Brittany was a member of the University of Cincinnati Bearcat Bands from 2010-2015. During her time with the Bearcat Marching Band, she performed at several bowl games and special appearances, including with the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra. After graduating from college, Brittany moved to Louisville, Kentucky to pursue her nursing career. She worked there in the Pediatric ICU until 2018 when she returned to Cincinnati. Brittany currently works at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in the Post-Anesthesia Care Unit and is pursuing her Master’s degree in Nursing Executive Leadership. She is extremely excited to be back as part of the Bearcat Bands family.
A variety of individuals serve the program in crirtical capacities. Whether as contracted employees or cherished volunteers, the program would not function without their expertise.
Randy Smith is a 1972 graduate of Cincinnati’s Anderson High School and holds multiple degrees from the University of Cincinnati where he was honored as Mr. Bearcat (Outstanding Senior) in 1977. While a student at UC Mr. Smith was a 7 year member of the Bearcat Marching Band and president his senior year. He also co-founded the UC Rallycats, UC’s student pep club. Following a 36-year career at Procter & Gamble, Mr. Smith continues to be active in local and state government and with the Bearcat Bands. He has served as “The Voice” of the band since 2001 and on the Board of Governors of the UC Band Alumni Association, having founded this organization in 1979. He continues to serve his alma mater as a Trustee of the University of Cincinnati Foundation, Chairman of the Communications Committee and as a member of this organization’s Executive Committee. He is the immediate past president of the Ohio School Boards Association and the Forest Hills School District.
Chris Southard is the owner of CDS Media Solutions providing high quality scanning and photo organizing services to clients in the Cincinnati area. Specifically, as a former college marching band trumpet player and rank leader, Chris has a passion for helping others preserve their marching band memories.
He is currently the Media Coordinator for the West Virginia University Marching Band where he manages their web site and serves as the photographer/videographer.
Chris enjoys working with the Bearcat Bands by preserving some of the best experiences of the members’ college lives.
Game Day and Travel Operations Assistant
Mike Sexton is a 53-year old father of two girls (25 & 19) and one boy (23). Both of his girls are flute/piccolo players. His oldest (Megan) was a 3-year member of the UC Band and his youngest, a senior at Oak Hills High School, has aspirations of playing in the UC Band as well.
He has previously helped as a volunteer with the UC Band for 5 years and for the past 9 years, he has served many roles, including managing the equipment transportation for the high school band. He’s a lifelong Bearcat lover, having grown up in Clifton through elementary and high school. Although he’s never played an instrument in his life, he’s found a tremendous respect for band and all the hard work and dedication that goes into being a band member. He looks forward to the upcoming Band Season and is proud to be part of such a wonderful program as the UC Bands. TUCBIDG!
Katie Kennard (née Korthauer) is a graduate of UC and a sister of the Theta chapter of Tau Beta Sigma (SKAKAM CELVK class of 2011). A former chapter VPM and Assistant VPS, she graduated from UC in 2015 and played mellophone and horn in the bands during her undergraduate years. Katie was also a Section Leader and Uniform Manager. She is currently a realtor in Cincinnati at Keller Williams Advisers Realty with 7 years of experience and resides in Anderson Township with her husband and two dogs.