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Dr. Donald D. RyderDonald D. Ryder

Associate Professor of Music, Director of Bands
Hired: 1999

University of Tennessee
227 Natalie L. Haslam Music Center
1741 Volunteer Blvd.
Knoxville, TN  37996-2600
Phone: 865-974-7520
UT Band website

Donald D. Ryder serves as the WJ Julian Professorship Director of Bands. His duties include working extensively with the "Pride of the Southland" Marching Band, conducting the UT Wind Ensemble, and teaching graduate instrumental conducting. Ryder also oversees the entire UT Band Program.

He earned his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio, a Master of Music Education degree from the University of Iowa, and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Wind Conducting from the University of Iowa. Ryder studied conducting with Myron Welch and Mark S. Kelly. Ryder was also a private conducting student of William D. Revelli.

Prior to his appointment at the University of Tennessee, Ryder was on the faculty at Sam Houston State University in Texas. Ryder successfully taught public school instrumental music in Ohio and Iowa for numerous years where his marching and concert bands were nationally recognized for superior levels of musicianship and performance.

During his tenure, he has received many honors and awards including Teacher of the Year. In 1991, Ryder was recognized by the American School Band Directors Association as the top high school band director in the country and was presented with the coveted Stanbury Award. This award recognized Ryder for his outstanding levels of teaching achievements with the Troy High School Band in Ohio. In 2003, Ryder was inducted into the Newton High School Hall of Fame. In 2006, he received the "Distinguished Alumni Award" from Bowling Green State University.

Ryder’s performances have received praise from composers Martin Mailman, Leslie Bassett, John Mackey, Michael Colgrass, Jim Self, and Jennifer Higdon.

Ryder serves as a clinician, adjudicator, and guest conductor in the field of instrumental music education and holds membership in many professional organizations such as the College Band Directors Association, National Band Association, American School Band Directors Association, East Tennessee School Band & Orchestra Association, and the Tennessee Music Educators Association.
  • D.M.A. in Conducting – University of Iowa (1999)
  • M.A. in Music Education – University of Iowa (1994)
  • B.M.E. in Music Education – Bowling Green State University (1984)
  • 1999-2002 - Band Director, Delaware City Schools (grades 5-12), Delaware, Ohio
  • 1994-1996 - Amana-Clear Creek High School  (Iowa)  Grades 9-12
  • 1986-1993 - Troy City Schools (Ohio) Grades 5 – 12
  • 1983-1986 - Newark City Schools (Ohio) Grades 5 - 12

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