Dr. David T. Kehler, Director of Bands
Since 2009, David Kehler has served as Director of Bands and Professor of Music at Kennesaw State University. There, he oversees all aspects of the University’s quickly expanding band program while serving as Music Director and Conductor of the KSU Wind Ensemble. An advocate of new music, Professor Kehler has commissioned leading composers to write new works for wind ensemble. In addition, the KSU Wind Ensemble has been featured on 90.1 FM (WABE- Atlanta public radio), and continues to garner praise from composers including Steven Bryant, Karel Husa, David Lang, David Maslanka, Scott McAllister, Joel Puckett and others. Dr. Kehler’s ensembles have performed at the CBDNA Southern Division conferences in 2012 and 2016, and won the American Prize for best university wind ensemble/concert band recording in 2013.
Previously, David Kehler served The University of Texas at Austin as a Graduate Conducting Associate receiving a Doctor of Musical Arts degree. From 2001-2009, Dr. Kehler served as Associate Conductor of America’s Premier Windband: The Dallas Winds where he was the director of the Dallas Winds International Fanfare Project. In addition, Dr. Kehler conducted the Dallas Winds throughout Texas, including the annual Labor Day Concert at the Dallas Arboretum, various Chautauqua festivals, holiday concerts, and a formal gala presented by the United States Armed Forces with all of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in attendance.
While in Texas, Dr. Kehler was also Founder and Conductor of the GDYO Wind Symphony, an ensemble affiliated with the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestras, Inc. During his ten years of service, the GDYO Wind Symphony established itself as one of the premier youth wind ensembles in the United States. They were a featured ensemble at the Texas Bandmasters Association/National Band Association Convention in San Antonio, Texas, and were heard internationally on “From the Top”, a syndicated radio program featuring the finest young classical musicians in the country. In addition, the GDYO Wind Symphony participated in exchange concerts with the Atlanta Youth Wind Symphony and performed with Jeff Nelson, former horn of the Canadian Brass. In the summer of 2008, the GDYO Wind Symphony embarked on an extensive two-week tour of China, performing at all of the major music conservatories throughout China and Hong Kong.
Previous academic appointments were at Southern Methodist University, the University of Rhode Island, and Bay City Western High School, in Bay City, Michigan. Growing up in Michigan, Dr. Kehler received his Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music in Conducting degrees from Michigan State University, followed by his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in instrumental conducting from the University of Texas at Austin. Professor Kehler currently serves as Vice-President for the College Band Directors National Association-Southern Division, and has memberships in many musical organizations including CBDNA, NAfME, Phi Beta Mu, GMEA, Conductor’s Guild and others. David Kehler continues to be active as a guest conductor and clinician for both high schools and universities throughout the United States, including recent engagements at Florida State University, McNeese State University, University of Georgia, University of Missouri, and the University of Rhode Island.
Dr. Debra L. Traficante, Associate Director of Bands
Director of “The Marching Owls”
Dr. Debra Traficante serves as Kennesaw State University’s Associate Director of Bands/Director of Athletic Bands. In this position, Dr. Traficante guides and directs all aspects of the KSU Marching Band (“The Marching Owls”), to be premiered in the Fall 2015, as well as the KSU Basketball Pep Band. Professor Traficante also serves as the Conductor of the KSU Concert Band, teaches beginning instrumental conducting, wind band literature, arranging and pedagogy, and marching band technique courses, while also advising Music Education students. She also serves as the Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma colony advisor. Dr. Traficante is on the brass staff for the 2015 Boston Crusaders.
Dr. Traficante formerly served as Assistant Professor of Music/Assistant Director of University Bands at the University of Oklahoma where she conducted the Symphony Band, assisted in directing the “Pride of Oklahoma” Marching Band, taught conducting lessons to graduate and undergraduate students, taught graduate wind literature courses, served as the lead teacher for the undergraduate conducting and methods course, and oversaw music education students. She also served as the School of Music: Music Minor advisor, Honors College Music Coordinator, faculty sponsor for Sigma Alpha Iota, and faculty sponsor for the Delta Chapters of Kappa Kappa Psi and Tau Beta Sigma.
Professor Traficante earned her Bachelor of Music in Music Education, cum laude, from the University of Florida (Gainesville, FL), a Master of Music degree in Wind Band Conducting from the University of Florida, and earned a Fellowship to pursue a Doctor of Musical Arts in Wind Band Conducting degree from the University of Oklahoma (Norman, OK). She served as Director of Bands for five years at New Smyrna Beach High School, Florida and Assistant Director of Bands for two years at Buchholz High School, Florida.
Dr. Traficante frequently judges, guest conducts, and clinics ensembles across the United States, and has conducted at the International World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles Conference in Singapore in 2005.
Professor Traficante is the immediate past National Vice President of Professional Relations for Tau Beta Sigma, and an Honorary Member of the Delta Chapters, Alpha Eta Chapter, and Beta Xi Chapter of the Kappa Kappa Psi National Band Fraternity and Tau Beta Sigma National Band Sorority. Additionally, she was honored in 2010 as a Distinguished Member in Sigma Alpha Iota and has been awarded the Martha Starke Memorial Scholarship for Women Conductors.
Dr. Joseph Scheivert, Interim Assistant Director of Bands
Dr. Joseph Scheivert is the Assistant Director of Bands at Kennesaw State University, where he works with the athletic band program, conducts the University Band, and is an Assistant Professor in the School of Music. Last year, as the Interim Director of Bands at UNC Charlotte, he directed the Pride of Niner Nation Marching Band, 49er Basketball Band, and Symphonic Band and taught courses in conducting and marching band techniques. Scheivert completed the D.M.A. in Wind Conducting program at the University of Iowa as a student of Dr. Mark Heidel, where he conducted concert ensembles, led the Iowa Pep Band, and served as a drill writer, arranger, and instructor of the Hawkeye Marching Band under the direction of Prof. Kevin Kastens. His dissertation research focused on policies and procedures developed by the Big Ten Conference marching bands in response to issues such as social media use, copyright concerns, and hazing. He has recently presented at The Midwest Clinic and the CBDNA Athletic Band Symposium.
Dr. Scheivert previously taught instrumental music at international schools in Asia, first at International School Eastern Seaboard in Sri Racha, Thailand, followed by the Senri and Osaka International Schools of Kwansei Gakuin in Osaka, Japan. Both appointments afforded him opportunities to conduct diverse levels of performers, establish new ensembles and classes, and travel with students both domestically and internationally. He also taught choral and general music in Lewes, Delaware.
Scheivert earned a Master of Music Education degree from the Pennsylvania State University, where he studied with Richard Bundy, Dennis Glocke, Joanne Rutkowski, Linda Thornton, and Ann Clements, and served as Graduate Assistant for Athletic Bands. He also earned his undergraduate degree in Music Education from Penn State. Originally from Spring Grove, Pennsylvania, Dr. Scheivert is excited to join the Kennesaw community with his wife, Jennifer, and their four children, Kathryn, Jacob, Samuel, and Benjamin.