Mrs. Kimberly Beckham, Music/Visual Technician
Kimberly Beckham served as the first Coordinator of Band Operations and Outreach for the KSU Band Department and School of Music. In this role, Mrs. Beckham provided administrative services and oversaw the daily operations of the KSU Marching Band, Basketball Band, Wind Ensemble, and Concert Band. She also coordinated “The Marching Owls” on game days and managed outreach events for the bands and School of Music. Mrs. Beckham received her degree in Music Education from the University of Georgia, where he studied trumpet with Dr. Brandon Craswell. During her time at UGA, Mrs. Beckham served as the Band Captain of the Redcoat Marching Band, Director of the UGA Volleyball Band, and performed in the UGA Wind Ensemble, Wind Symphony, Symphonic Band, Jazz Band, and Basketball Band.
Prior to working at KSU, Mrs. Beckham served as a band director and general music teacher. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her husband and family, participates in the music ministry at St. Peter Chanel Catholic Church, and plays trumpet in the Tara Winds adult wind symphony.
Mr. Clayton Finlayson, Music/Visual Technician
Clayton Finlayson started his involvement with marching band in 2008 when he joined the Harrison High School Marching Band under the direction of David Vandewalker, Steve Meyer, and Joshua Ray. In 2009, he joined Alliance Drum & Bugle Corps based in Atlanta, Georgia, where he also marched in 2010. Mr. Finlayson graduated from Harrison in 2011 and enrolled at Georgia State University to study trumpet performance & music management. He went on to join DCI and the Carolina Crown hornline in 2012 and again for their first world championship in 2013.
Mr. Finlayson joined The Cavaliers for his age-out season in 2015. In 2016, he was offered a position as an intern to teach with the brass staff at The Cavaliers. Clayton’s previous private instructors include Jennifer Marotta, Dr. Amanda Pepping, and Hollie Lifshey.
Along with drum and bugle corps, he has been very active with teaching high school marching bands including Kell High School, Terry Sanford High School, Round Rock High School, TX; Leander High School, TX; Centennial High School and most recently at Kennesaw Mountain High School.
Mr. Finlayson currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia where he is a flight attendant for Delta Air Lines.
Mr. Bradley Rikard, Music/Visual Technician
Mr. Bradley Rikard is currently serving in his first year as the Associate Director of Bands at Barber Middle School in Kennesaw, GA. Before working at Barber, Mr. Rikard was the Assistant Director of Bands at Lindley Middle School in Cobb County from 2009-2015. While at Lindley, the Band Program experienced tremendous growth in quantity and quality, with the program almost tripling in size and students being accepted to All-State and Honor Bands.
In addition to his middle school responsibilities, Mr. Rikard assists with several outstanding marching bands. Most recently, he was on staff with the Hillgrove High School marching band under the direction of Mr. Patrick Erwin. Mr. Rikard has also worked with Mr. Greg Williams and the North Cobb High School marching band.
Mr. Rikard recently completed his Master’s of Music Education from Florida State University in the summer of 2015. In 2007, Mr. Rikard completed his Bachelor of Music degrees in Music Education and Saxophone Performance from Georgia Southern University. As a performer in both classical and jazz idioms, Mr. Rikard has shared the stage with world-renowned musicians such as Eugene Rousseau, Otis Murphy, The Zagreb Quartet, The New Century Quartet, Tom “Bones” Malone, Mark Camphouse, Steve Bryant, Harry Watters, Sam Hazo, and Jamey Aebersold.
In the Fall of 2015, Mr. Rikard will be serving on the Visual/Music Staff for the inaugural year of the Kennesaw State University Marching Owls. His professional affiliations include: National Association for Music Education, Georgia Music Educators Association, and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia.
Mr. Rikard is an active performer as Principal Saxophone with the Tara Winds adult community band, which was recently selected to perform at the 2015 Midwest Clinic in Chicago. He currently resides in Kennesaw with his fiancée, Megan and golden retriever, Grainger.
Mr. Michael Terry, Music/Visual Technician
Michael Terry is a freelance musician residing in the northern suburbs of Atlanta, GA. Mr. Terry holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree from Kennesaw State University where he studied euphonium with Mr. Bernard Flythe. At KSU, he was announced a winner of the 2012-2013 Concerto Competition and the Composition Contest. Mr. Terry completed his student teaching practicum at Kell High School (Marietta, GA) under the supervision of band director David Roth.
Currently, Mr. Terry works as a brass instructor at multiple high schools as well as designing and arranging marching band shows for a number of groups across the country. After spending 8 seasons marching with The Cadets drum corps, Mr. Terry went on to hold positions such as low brass coordinator, assistant brass caption head, and brass caption head at the Troopers and Spirit of Atlanta. Recently, Mr. Terry returned to The Cadets as a member of the brass staff.
Mr. Terry stays active as a performer through playing with the Georgia Brass Band and various other chamber ensemble opportunities around the Atlanta area. Mr. Terrys professional affiliations include Mu Phi Epsilon, co-ed professional music fraternity (Delta Epsilon chapter), and Phi Mu Alpha, professional music fraternity (Nu Theta chapter).
Mr. Alan Sears, Percussion Instructor
Alan Sears is a co-founder of Atlanta Quest. He has been the music and program director since the beginning in 2002.
He obtained a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education from Georgia Southern University in 1999. While there he performed under the direction of Dr. Daniel Pittman, and studied with Dr. Matt Fallin. He was a member of the “Southern Pride” Marching Drumline and Indoor Drumline. He instructed and arranged for the group from 1996-1998. He also toured extensively as a performer over the Eastern United States and throughout Europe.
Alan now serves as the Director of Percussion for the Sprayberry High School “Band of Gold”, as well as consults and arranges for many groups throughout the state. His students have been named to the Georgia All-State Band and Orchestra, the Georgia Governors Honors Program, and received scholarships and placement in some of the most prestigious college band programs in the country. He also serves as the Co-Caption Head and Arranger for Alliance Drum and Bugle Corps. Mr. Sears also has his arrangements published with CounterMotion Inc.
Mr. Sears is member of the Percussive Arts Society and a co-founder of the Georgia Alliance for Performing Arts Education, a non-profit foundation that provides support for Atlanta Quest.
Alan is married to Monna Sears and the proud father of two sons Hayden Alan Sears and Cole Alexander Sears.
Mr. Zack Marshall, Assistant Percussion Instructor
Mr. Marshall is an Organizational Communications major at Kennesaw State University. He has served as the Visual Caption Head of Atlanta Quest since 2013. Mr. Marshall spent the summer of 2014 on visual staff for the Blue Knights Drum and Bugle Corps. He continues to write drill and design shows for Atlanta Quest, as well as many high school programs in the Southeast.
As a performer, Mr. Marshall spent numerous years as a snare drummer competing in WGI, where he marched his last season with Music City Mystique in 2011. He is also a member of the Percussive Arts Society where he competed for the first time in 2014, winning with his original composition, “A Night in the Boro,” performed by the Middle Tennessee State University Snare Ensemble.
Mr. Marshall still continues to pursue his passion of performing as he returns to Kennesaw from his tour of Europe with Blue Devils International.
Zac Carr is the Bass Drum Tech for “The Marching Owls.” He currently works as the bass tech for Alliance Drum and Bugle Corps and for Roswell High School. In the past, Zac has worked with Woodland High School in Cartersville, Sprayberry High School, Creekview High School, Barber Middle School, Reinhardt University in Waleska, and the University of Alabama “Million Dollar Band.” He has performed with Boston Crusaders Drum & Bugle Corps, Alliance Drum & Bugle Corps, and Atlanta Quest Independent Indoor Drumline.
In December of 2014, Mr. Carr graduated from Kennesaw State University with a B.S. in Psychology and a minor in Applied Statistics and Data Analysis. He now works full-time as the eCommerce Data Specialist for Pillow Perfect, Inc. in Woodstock.
Ms. Kaley Krafka, Colorguard Instructor and Coordinator
Kaley Krafka serves as colorguard instructor and coordinator of “The Marching Owls.” Previously, she worked as an assistant flagline coordinator for the University of Georgia Redcoat Marching Band and served as an instructor at the UGA Summer Marching Camp for several years. She has provided choreography for various high school band programs and served as the colorguard instructor at both North Oconee High School and Cedar Shoals High School.
Ms. Krafka received her Bachelor’s and Master’s of Early Childhood Education from the University of Georgia. During her time in undergrad, she was a member of the UGA Flagline and participated on the school’s rifle line.
Ms. Krafka is a Marietta native and currently teaches first grade at Ford Elementary in Cobb County. She is engaged to be married in July 2017.