Alumni Spotlight: Ryan Ellis, Cymbals

ImageRyan Ellis marched with Pacific Crest from 1998 through 2002, the year before PC attended DCI Championships the first time. He now lives in Wisconsin, and has many fond memories of his time with the coprs and how it currently helps him in his current career.

My first year with Pacific Crest and drum corps in general was in 1998.  Each of my five years with the corps until I aged out in 2002 generated so many precious memories.  Pacific Crest gave me the valuable experience of music performance while allowing me to hold a part-time job and attend college.  The unique summer rehearsal schedule of Pacific Crest made my career achievements possible.  For the past five years I have been working as the Regional Underwriting Manager for Zurich North America.  I specialize in underwriting commercial insurance for a variety of risks.  I am currently a graduate student at Boston University working on my master’s degree in management.  My job has since relocated me to Wisconsin which is an exciting place to be for a drum corps fan.

I would have to say that I did not truly understand what drum corps was all about until I completed my first show, “Hamlet” in Northern California.  There is something magical and indescribable about performing a show as part of such a cohesive unit.  One of the truly amazing things about Pacific Crest is that each year brings a new and rewarding accomplishment.  Every year I marched holds a special place in my heart as do the many people I became friends with.  Drum corps quickly became an addiction for me and I found myself consumed with it on a daily basis.  Being one of over a hundred dedicated, focused performers will change you forever.  Even today, I know the valuable experiences gained through the activity have had a profound effect on the person I am.  Being able to perform in front of hundreds or thousands of spectators has given me the confidence to lead corporate strategy sessions.  I find my career work ethic is the same as it was as a member of the corps.  Each day is an opportunity to improve yourself and the quality of your output.  It is truly astounding the lifelong lessons I gained from the staff and from my fellow corps members. 

Having grown up in Mission Viejo, Pacific Crest was a natural fit for my drum corps experience.  Some of my fondest memories came from the car rides to and from rehearsal with several other members.  Upon completing my first season, I knew Pacific Crest was going to be the corps I was to age out in.  As a proud alumnus today, giving back to the corps through donations is as rewarding as the marching experience was.  There is no question that Pacific Crest is the premier drum corps in Southern California and one of the finest in the nation.  Donating to the corps helps ensure each year the corps turns out a show even better than the previous year.