Arthur Carichner

Carichner, a graduate of Mansfield University, served as Instrumental Music Educator in charge of the band program at Horseheads High School (1978-2011, and was the department chair during his final four years at the school. He is currently working in the School of Music at Ithaca College, and conducted the campus band this past semester. In 2011, he received the NYS Distinguished Retired Band Director Award, and he was Horseheads Central School District Teacher of the Year in 2004.

Upon his selection, Carichner said, “I am both honored and excited to be a member of this well-established musical group. I look forward to a wonderful journey creating many happy memories for both band and community members.”



Richard (Rick) Eleck


Eleck received a Bachelor of Music degree from Baldwin-Wallace and a Master’s from Ithaca College. He has been Director of Bands at Cortland Senior High School since 1986, with responsibilities of conducting the wind ensemble, the concert band and the jazz band. He also administers the marching and pep bands. The president of the NYS Field Band Conference from 1993-95, Eleck is well known as an All-State and Major Organization adjudicator and clinician. Prior to teaching in Cortland, he was the Director of Jazz Studies at Cayuga Community College.

Eleck, who has been a proponent of life-long music making, said, “I am both humbled and honored to have been offered the opportunity to be co-conductor of the Ithaca Concert Band. I have often said that playing a musical instrument should not stop at the high school level, and this band accomplishes the mission at an extremely high level.”

Conductors Emeriti


Mark Fonder was a professor of music education at Ithaca College where he conducted the Concert Band.  He earned his Ed.D. and M.S. degrees at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his B.M. at  Lawrence University.  Professor Fonder is a former faculty member at the University of Texas at San Antonio and the University of Wisconsin - Green Bay and a public school teacher in Wisconsin.  He was formerly a trombonist with the Green Bay Symphony and the San Antonio Brass.  Adjudicator, clinician, guest conductor, school music consultant. Music consultant, Educational Testing Service. Contributor, Music Educators Journal, Instrumentalist, Band Director’s Guide, Journal of Research in Music Education, Bulletin of Historical Research in Music Education. Editor, Ithaca Conference on American Music Education: Centennial Profiles; Journal of Historical Research in Music Education; Hawaii-Pacific Music Education Research Symposium.  Fonder has recently published "Patrick Conway and His Famous Band." Frequent presenter at state, regional, and national conferences.


Beth Peterson is currently associate director of bands at the University of Illinois and served as associate professor of music and member of the music education department at the Ithaca College School of Music. Peterson taught brass and woodwind pedagogy, instrumental conducting, secondary instrumental methods, and graduate level music education courses.  She supervised student teachers at the junior and senior level and was the placement coordinator for the Junior Instrumental Student Teaching program. Peterson has conducted the Ithaca College Brass Choir and All-Campus Band, and the Ithaca College Symphonic Band. Her research interests include the study of first year music teachers and the pursuit of music and life-long learning.


Keith Kaiser is professor of music education and has served as chairperson-music education (for 12 years) and associate dean & assessment coordinator for the Ithaca College School of Music. Kaiser holds degrees from the Florida State University (Ph.D.), the University of Redlands (MM), and the University of Wyoming (BM). As a faculty member at Ithaca College, he received a 2010 Faculty Excellence Award, and he teaches undergraduate and graduate music education courses, supervises junior and senior level student teachers, and conducts various instrumental music ensembles. For six years, Kaiser served as conductor of the Signature Syracuse Concert Band (a concert band for inner-city youth). He's active throughout the country as a guest conductor, presenter, clinician, adjudicator and consultant.


Henry G. Neubert conducted the Ithaca Concert Band from 1978 through the summer of 1999.  He was professor of double bass at the Ithaca College School of Music where he also conducted the symphonic band. He earned his BME and MM degrees at Northwestern University, where he studied double bass with Warren Benfield and conducting with John Painter. After six years of teaching instrumental music in the Northport - East Northport Schools on Long Island, Neubert joined the Ithaca College faculty in 1972.  Neubert was the principal bassist of the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra where he occupied the Charles and Shirley Hockett endowed chair.  On April 23, 2005, Neubert conducted his retirement concert at Ithaca College where he nurtured over 2,000 student musicians throughout his career.