President’s Message

Welcome to CBDNA

The College Band Directors National Association is a grass-roots organization that serves its membership in a myriad of ways. At its inception CBDNA sought to address common issues facing the college band director, raise the artistry of its conductors, and develop a repertoire of music distinct from the orchestral world and traditional marches. One of its early missions was to commission renowned composers who had never written for band, and great new pieces were composed by Ingolf Dahl, Aaron Copland, Howard Hanson, and Ernst Krenek to name just a few. These efforts resulted in a proliferation of consortia by band conductors that continues to this day, adding to a vibrant repertoire of new music for band.

As the years have gone by our organization has tackled many different issues facing our profession. For too long, women and people of color have not had equal opportunities in the band profession, and we as an organization actively seek to change that paradigm. We welcome the challenge and invite everyone to the conversation. Today CBDNA seeks to serve a wide variety of constituents, from the conservatory wind ensemble, to the athletic band, to the small college band, and everything in between. We meet at five division conferences in even-numbered years, and at our national conference in the odd years. There is also an annual athletic band symposium; the 2021 conference will be hosted by Chris Nichter at the University of Cincinnati May 26-29. Our next national conference that was to take place in Athens, GA, hosted by Cynthia Johnston Turner and her staff at the University of Georgia Hodgson School of Music February 17-20, 2021 has been postponed until February 15-18, 2023.

CBDNA is overseen by a board of directors for which I am president until 2023. This board also includes our six division presidents, past president, immediate past president, president-elect, vice president, secretary, and treasurer. All positions except secretary and treasurer are elected by the membership. There are a number of standing committees working on various topics and issues.

In short, the College Band Directors National Association is a vibrant community of musicians interested in and working in the field of bands of all shapes and sizes. We seek to be the best conductors, musicians, and educators that we possibly can be, and pass that baton to the next generation.

Mark Spede, President