Dr. Robert Dunham, Director of Bands
Conductor, Wind Ensemble
Coordinator, Graduate Wind Conducting Program
Dr. Robert Dunham is Director of Bands at Georgia Southern University, where he coordinates the wind and percussion program, conducts the Symphonic Wind Ensemble and Concert Band, teaches undergraduate and graduate instrumental conducting, music education and literature courses.
Prior to his appointment at Georgia Southern University, Dr. Dunham served for five years as Fred and Dinah Gretsch School of Music Chairman and ten years as Director of Instrumental Studies at California State University, San Bernardino. Before moving to California in 1996, Dr. Dunham held positions as Director of Bands at the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse, Northern Michigan University, Missouri Western State College, and taught instrumental music in the public schools of Wyoming and Utah.
Dr. Dunham received his DMA in instrumental conducting from the University of Missouri – Kansas City Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Professor Gary Hill. He received the MM in trumpet performance and music education from the University of Wyoming, where he studied with Robert Mayse and Carlyle Weiss and received the BM in trumpet performance, and BME in music education from the University of Northern Colorado, where he studied with Eugene Corporon, and William Pfund. Dr. Dunham has also had additional conducting training with Elizabeth A. H. Green, Larry Rachleff, and Nurhan Arman.
Collegiate ensembles under his direction have performed at regional CBDNA conventions, the California Music Educators convention, the Wyoming All State Music Educators Convention, Drum Corps International World Championships, National Football League half-time shows, and been invited to perform in China, Mexico, and England.
Between 1990 and 1996 Dr. Dunham served as a tenured trumpet player and the Assistant Conductor of two regional, professional orchestras – the St. Joseph Symphony Orchestra, and the La Crosse Symphony Orchestra. And, in 2003 he founded the Inland Southern California Chamber Players – a professional ensemble dedicated to the performance of chamber music composed since 1900.
As a guest conductor, clinician and adjudicator, Dr. Dunham has traveled throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico. He is the CBDNA Western/Northwestern representative to the New Music Commissioning Committee, Chairman of the Artistic Committee for the San Bernardino Symphony Orchestra Board of Directors, and Past Vice President for Music Lists and a member of the Festival Adjudication Steering Committee for the Southern California School Band and Orchestra Association.
Mr. Michael Thomas, Associate Director of Bands / Director of Athletic Bands
Director, Southern Pride Marching Band
Conductor, Wind Symphony
Mr. Michael Thomas serves as the Associate Director of Bands and the Director of Athletic Bands at Georgia Southern University where he directs the Southern Pride Marching Band, Wind Symphony, and Pep Bands. He also teaches marching band techniques and graduate drill writing and arranging.
Mr. Thomas received his Bachelor of Music Education Degree and Master’s Degree in Conducting Performance from Georgia Southern University.
Mr. Thomas started his career in Drum and Bugle Corps at the early age of thirteen and spent four years marching with the Division 2 Phantom Regiment Cadets. Shortly after moving to Georgia he joined the Army National Guard Band in Atlanta, GA. The military band allowed him to attend Georgia Southern University in the fall of 1995 in pursuit of his Mechanical Engineering Degree. He marched with the Division I Champions, The Cadets in 1998. After graduating in fall of 2000, Mr. Thomas spent the next eight years working at Gulfstream Aerospace in Savannah, GA.
In 2001, he joined the Air Force National Guard Band of the South in Marietta, GA and in 2012 transferred to McGhee Tyson Air Base in Maryville, TN. During his time in the Air Force, he has been deployed to serve in Operation Iraqi and Enduring Freedom. His deployment took him to seven different countries playing music for thousands of troops at several different bases. Mr. Thomas is also the director of Sound Barrier, a twenty member performing ensemble that tours all over the southeast performing music ranging from classic rock to funk, Motown to today’s greatest hits.
Mr. Thomas is an accomplished trumpet and guitar player. While in the Air Force Band, he performs regularly with the concert band, jazz ensemble, and also the brass quintet. He also performs on guitar in the rock band, Space-A. During the summer of 2002, Mr. Thomas played trumpet with BLAST II, Shockwave, a product of the Tony and Emmy Award winning production, BLAST!
Mr. Thomas was previously the director of bands at East Paulding High School in Dallas, GA from 2014 to 2021. From 2003 to 2014, he designed and taught the marching band program at Richmond Hill High School in Richmond Hill, GA, where they have won several competitions, including the Georgia Marching Series in 2013. The marching band also performed at Bands of America in Atlanta, GA in 2007.
His professional affiliations include the National Band Association, the National Association for Music Education, and the Georgia Music Educators Association. Mr. Thomas is also an honorary member of Kappa Kappa Psi music fraternity.
Last updated: 7/1/2022