Bill Fritz

Photo_FritzBillBill Fritz
Visual Caption Head

BILL FRITZ is an alumnus of Upland High School in Upland, CA, where he graduated in 2003. Although he began his musical career as a saxophonist, Bill spent his time in the marching band as a mellophone player. After high school, he performed with Pacific Crest in 2003, 2004, and 2006. He then performed with the Blue Devils, where he aged out in 2007.

Bill is a sought-after visual and music instructor for high schools in southern California area, most notably at Ayala, Chino Hills, and Upland. Prior to joining teaching at Pacific Crest in 2013, Bill taught three seasons as a visual instructor for The Academy Drum and Bugle Corps.

Outside of drum corps, Bill is actively engaged in the field of Wind Band Conducting. He is currently a Graduate Assistant in Instrumental Conducting at California State University, Fullerton, under the direction of Dr. Mitchell J. Fennell, where he conducts the University Band, Symphonic Winds, and University Wind Symphony. Before beginning his graduate studies, Bill earned a B.A. in Music Education, a B.M. in Saxophone Performance, and a single-subject teaching credential from CSU, Fullerton, under the tutelage of L.A. Philharmonic Saxophonist, James Rotter.

Neechelle Takinen

Photo_TakinenNeechelleNeechelle Takinen
Movement Specialist and Visual Intern

NEECHELLE TAKINEN was born and raised in Arizona. She’s been dancing for nearly 20 years, performing with Take 5 Dance Academy and appearing a number of times in the Russian Nutcracker and the Snow Queen Ballets.

Since high school, Neechelle has performed with Mosaic Indoor Percussion, Dark Sky Percussion, the Arizona State University (ASU) Sun Devil Marching Band, Arizona State Indoor, and Pacific Crest.

Neechelle began teaching dance at a young age and went on to work with many Arizona high school marching programs (including Apollo and Perry) teaching visual movement, color guard, cymbals, and flute. She is currently a student at Arizona State University, studying for a dual certificate in early childhood education and special education.

David Reaver

Photo_ReaverDavidDavid Reaver
Visual Instructor

DAVID REAVER began playing trumpet at the age of 7. While attending Patriot High School, he performed as a trumpet soloist at Pacific Crest from 2007-2009. He went on to perform as a trumpet and flugelhorn soloist for The Blue Devils from 2010-2013, and won three consecutive solo DCI I & E titles. David also performed for five years  for The Walt Disney Company.

David’s teaching experience includes visual, music, and percussion instruction at Patriot High School, Ayala High School, and Riverside Community College. His performance and teaching experiences have provided opportunities for him to travel  across the US, as well internationally to Malaysia, Taiwan, Guatemala, the UK, and Spain.

David holds his Master’s degree in mechanical engineering, with research experience in machine learning and artificial intelligence, from UC Riverside. He currently works as a mechanical and software engineer, creating simulation software for energy companies.

Rudy Ruiz

Photo_RuizRudyRudy Ruiz
Visual Caption Head

From Covina, California, RUDY RUIZ was performed on contrabass with Pacific Crest from 2008-2009 and Cavaliers from 2010-2011.

Rudy has taught the visual programs at several high school bands in Southern California including, South Hills, Azusa, Gahr, Sunny Hills, and is currently teaching at Monrovia, Gladstone, and La Canada High Schools as visual caption head. Rudy has served as a tech on the visual staff of Pacific Crest from 2012-2015 and moved into an Assistant Caption Head role for 2016-2017. In addition to teaching Pacific Crest, Rudy also had the privilege of teaching on the Cavaliers visual staff from 2013-2015.

When he’s not teaching bands or drum corps, Rudy works as a freelance Cinematographer, Camera Assistant/Operator, Production Assistant, and Editor on independent features, short films, and music videos in Los Angeles, California, and Las Vegas, Nevada.

Kevin Ronan

Photo_RonanKevinKevin Ronan
Brass Consultant/Breathing Specialist

KEVIN RONAN is a graduate of Arizona State University, where he earned his Bachelors in Music Education and Masters in Music Performance. While a student at ASU, he studied with Sam Pilafian, world-renowned pedagogue and co-author of “The Breathing Gym”. Kevin also served on the instructional staff of the ASU Athletic Band Department for five years, where he worked closely with another one of his mentors, James G. Hudson.

Mr. Ronan currently resides in Lewisville, TX where he is a private lesson instructor at Marcus High School. In addition to his private lesson responsibilities, he works with the Marcus Marching Band and Concert Bands. Kevin is also in his seventh year as a brass instructor for The Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps. Prior to teaching The Blue Devils, he was a member of the hornline and served as tuba section leader.

In demand as a brass and breathing clinician, Kevin has presented clinics and masterclasses across the United States, as well as in Malaysia, Taiwan, and Guatemala. When not busy with his teaching schedule, he arranges music for marching bands and other ensembles.


Dr. Andy Poor

Photo_PoorAndy_squareAndy Poor
Brass Consultant

ANDY POOR has been a member of the part-time music education division of the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University since 2006. He also currently serves as the Director of Bands at South Forsyth Middle School in Cumming, Georgia. Dr. Poor holds the Doctor of Music Education degree and the Master of Music degree in Trumpet Performance from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, Cincinnati, Ohio. He previously received the Bachelor of Music Education degree (High Honors) from the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida. Dr. Poor is a National Board Certified Teacher in the area of Early Adolescence to Young Adulthood Music/Band as recognized by the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards. Likewise, he is listed in six editions of Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers, as well as, the 2002 and 2003 Who’s Who in America. Dr. Poor is a member of Phi Beta Mu, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, ASCAP, NAfME, College Music Society, National Band Association, International Trumpet Guild, and the Georgia Music Educators Association.

Involved in the drum corps activity for over 30 years, Dr. Poor was a six-year member of the Suncoast Sound and was the 1987 recipient of the Jim Ott Memorial Scholarship. Over his 18-year tenure as a music judge for Drum Corps International, Dr. Poor was fortunate to have been invited to judge at 13 World Championships, including the World and Open classes, as well as the Individual and Ensemble (I & E) event. Additionally, he served for six years (2000-2005) as the Brass Caption Chair for the Drum Corps International Judge Administration Team. Additional adjudication services have been provided to the Georgia Music Educators Association, Drum Corps Midwest, Bands of America, Winter Guard International, Indiana State School Music Association, South Carolina State Marching Championships, Kentucky State Marching Championships, and Oklahoma Bandmasters Association. In 2011, Dr. Poor worked as a consultant to the brass staff of the Blue Stars Drum and Bugle Corps, and he was on the brass staff of the Phantom Regiment from 2012 through 2015.

As a music educator for over 22 years, Dr. Poor’s ensembles have given several outstanding performances, including the 17th International Cultural Festival in Tottori, Japan; the 1997 Florida Music Educators State Conference; and the Kennesaw State University High School Band Invitational. Furthermore, he conducted Rising Starr Middle School’s (Fayetteville, Georgia) premiere of his composition, Acceptance, at the 2008 Midwest Clinic.

Dr. Poor has over 95 compositions and arrangements for a variety of ensembles to his credit. His commissioned works have been performed at several distinguished events, including the Midwest Clinic, GMEA State In-Service Conference, GMEA All-State Band Concerts, University of Georgia Mid-Fest, University of Alabama Honor Band Clinic, Music for All National Concert Band Festival, and numerous local concerts. His wind band and chamber works appear in the catalogs of C.L. Barnhouse, Northeastern Music Publications, and Eighth Note Music. He has served as composer in residence at the University of Tennessee Martin, Samford University, the University of Alabama, as well as a number of secondary schools across Georgia and Florida. His hymn-setting, My Father’s World, was selected by the Midwest Clinic Board of Directors as a notable new work in 2010. His fanfare, To the Stars, was selected by as one of the Top 100 new wind band pieces for 2011. His most recent Barnhouse published work, Hope Springs Eternal, was selected as an Editor’s Choice by J.W. Pepper. In 2012, Dr. Poor began serving as the wind arranger for the University of Tennessee Martin Skyhawk Marching Band and has also provided arranging services to the University of Alabama Million Dollar Band and numerous high schools in Florida, Georgia, and Alabama.

Dr. Poor is frequently invited to serve as a consultant, adjudicator, clinician, and guest conductor. He has presented at the Midwest Clinic, Ohio Music Educators Association State Conference, Florida Music Educators Association State Conference, and at four Georgia Music Educators Association State InService Conferences. He has also served as a curriculum consultant to the Cobb County School District, Bibb County Schools, and Polk County School District (Bartow, Florida). Furthermore, his published writings can be found in the Journal for the International Trumpet Guild, Florida Music Director, and the Quarterly Journal of Music Teaching and Learning.