CNX22 Percussion Staff

Jack Boulis

Executive Director

Member, CPAA Board of Directors

Jack is a music educator and percussionist from Delaware, Ohio. He received his bachelor’s degree in music education from the University of Toledo in 1993. Jack was a member of the Glassmen Drum and Bugle Corps from 1986-1990 where he served as drum line captain 1988-1990.

Over the past 27 years Jack has taught music in all grade levels, K-12, in Ohio public schools. Other teaching experience includes the University of Toledo Marching Band and the University of Cincinnati Athletic Bands.

Jack serves on the ConneXus Performing Arts Association, Inc. Board of Directors and has been with ConneXus since their first season in 2013.

Andrew Brown

Ensemble Director
Program Coordinator
Music Coordinator

Vice President, CPAA Board of Directors

Drew Brown has been involved with the marching and percussive arts since 2001 as a performer, educator, and designer. He is currently Ensemble Director at ConneXus Percussion where he also serves as Program Coordinator and Music Coordinator and as Vice President of the ConneXus Performing Arts Association, Inc. Board of Directors.

Since 2015, Drew has worked with the Colts Drum and Bugle Corps where he is a front ensemble technician and electronics coordinator.

Drew studied music education, composition, and percussion performance at Bowling Green State University, Wright State University, and the University of Cincinnati – College-Conservatory of Music.

Drew is proud to be endorsed by Innovative Percussion and Evans Drumheads.

Nick Riley

Program Coordinator
Development Coordinator
Front Ensemble Technician

President, CPAA Board of Directors

Nick Riley is thrilled to return to ConneXus for his tenth season in 2022.

Currently, Nick serves as the Program Coordinator, Development Coordinator, and Front Ensemble Technician for ConneXus and has previously held numerous administrative, creative, and instructional roles since co-founding the ensemble in the summer of 2012.  Nick has also served as President of the ConneXus Performing Arts Association, Inc. Board of Directors since 2016.

Nick has been involved in the pageantry arts as a performer, instructor, composer/arranger, and adjudicator since 2003.  He holds a Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio where he studied music education with James Swearingen and Jim Dowdy; percussion with Bob Breithaupt, Nate Anders, and Eric Paton; and music composition with Dr. Dina Lentsner and Tony Zilincik.  Nick was an in-demand marching percussion specialist in central and southwestern Ohio while completing his undergraduate degree, leading numerous programs to prominence.

Nick is in his ninth year as Director of Bands for Liberty Center Local Schools in northwest Ohio where he coordinates all aspects of the band program grades 5 through 12.  Since his appointment in 2012, the band program has more than doubled in size and seen significant growth in quality and interest.

Nick is the founder of the web-based pageantry arts music design business NPR Marching Concepts where has has composed nearly 600 works for over 60 ensembles since beginning his writing career in 2007.  A prolific composer for marching bands, indoor percussion ensembles, drum corps, and winter winds, Nick’s compositions can be heard across the United States and South America.  In addition to publishing his own work, Nick’s compositions for indoor percussion are published by Gary P. Gilroy Publications and Marching Show Concepts.

Nick is an accomplished adjudicator for the pageantry arts, judging actively for the Central States Judges Association since 2013 and the Ohio Music Education Association since 2012.  Specializing in music general effect and percussion performance, he has judged in six states and has been included on local and championship-level adjudication panels.  He has been selected to adjudicate the Mid-States Band Association Circuit Championships annually since 2017.

Nick’s previous staff assignments reflect a diverse background in the pageantry arts.  He has served as the Assistant Visual Supervisor for Legends Drum & Bugle Corps (2011-2013), a Percussion Consultant for The Ohio State University Marching Band (2011-2014), Front Ensemble Instructor for Pioneer Drum & Bugle Corps (2014), and Visual Technician for the Colts Drum & Bugle Corps (2016).  Nick is currently the Percussion Composer/Arranger for the Gran Banda Drum & Bugle Corps of Medellin, Colombia, South America, where he has served on both the percussion and visual staffs since 2014.  The “GB” is the 2014 DCI SoundSport Champion and the first ensemble from South America to perform in DCI events.

Nick is a member of OMEA, CSJA, PFCJ, NAfME, and PAS.  Nick holds endorsements from Vic Firth and Black Swamp Percussion.

A native of Centerville, Ohio, Nick currently lives in Perrysburg, Ohio near Toledo.

Andrew Markworth

Front Ensemble Composer/Arranger

Andrew Markworth is a composer, arranger and consultant writing wind, front ensemble and battery percussion for marching bands, indoor drumlines and drum corps.

He is currently the music arranger and coordinator for the Crossmen Drum and Bugle Corps from San Antonio, TX and The Company Performance Ensemble of Great Britain. He also is the music director for Rhythm X; both the 3 time gold medalist percussion group (2008, 2009, 2013) and the 2 time gold medalist winds group (2015, 2017). Andrew was the Front Ensemble Arranger/Coordinator for Carolina Crown from 2007-2014.

Andrew currently resides in Centerville, Ohio with his wife Kara, daughter Natalie, and son Brady.

Ryan Ellis

Battery Composer/Arranger
Visual Designer/Coordinator

Ryan Ellis is an active battery arranger, visual designer, and drill writer for marching bands, indoor drumlines, and drum corps. He has performed with Rhythm X, Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps, Bluecoats Drum and Bugle Corps, and the Spirit of Atlanta Drum and Bugle Corps.
Ryan currently serves as both the Percussion Caption Head and Battery Arranger for the Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps. 
Ryan currently lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with his wife Kayla.

Brandon Smith

Movement Designer

Originally from Lexington, KY, Brandon’s career in the performing arts includes musical theater professional and studio dance, and the marching arts. He began drum corps and color guard with the Madison Scouts, performing in the color guard from 2003-2006. Afterwards, he was a member of the Pride of Cincinnati and Juxtaposition Winter Guard. Brandon has an extensive stage performance resume that includes regional musical theater and professional dance. Highlights include Hair, RENT, Hairspray, The Nutcracker Ballet, and the world premiere cast of the Pride of Cincinnati Dance Ensemble.

A 2007 graduate of Miami University of Ohio, he was a four year member of their student dance company, Vision Dance Company, and led them as Artistic Director for the 2005-06 season. After graduating, he served as a musical theater dance instructor for Kentucky Conservatory Theatre (KCT). He continued his teaching at Olmsted Performing Arts (OPA) in Cleveland, OH, while pursuing his M.A. in Arts Administration from the University of Akron. He also served as the Director of Dance Education at OPA and instructed students in jazz, contemporary and ballet. Brandon was also a founding member of the North Pointe Ballet company.

Brandon has been a designer and choreographer for color guards in the Kentucky and Ohio region including include Paul Laurence Dunbar HS, North Hardin HS, Madison Central HS, and Phoenix Independent Winter Guard. Brandon is entering his 5th season as a Designer and Movement Choreographer for Juxtaposition Winter Guard, the 2016 WGI Independent Open Class Champion and 2017 World Class Finalist. From 2012-2017, Brandon was the Color Guard Caption Head and Designer for the Colts Drum and Bugle Corps. Currently, he is the Movement Designer and Choreographer for The Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps.

Brandon lives in Columbus, Ohio where he choreographs for the Central Crossing and Worthington Kilbourne bands. Brandon is looking forward to his third season with ConneXus!

Molly Favret

Artistic, Set, and Uniform Designer

Molly Favret began her color guard career 15 years ago at Pope High School earning two WGI World Championship medals in 2008 and 2009. Her independent marching career began with the 2010 Crown Guard followed by five years of performing with Paramount World Winter Guard since their inaugural season in 2011. After receiving the WGI Scholarship Award in 2012, Molly went on to march her age-out with the Glassmen Drum & Bugle Corps.

Molly has been an instructor for a number of high school programs in the Southeast including Allatoona HS (GA), McEachern HS (GA), Ooltewah HS (TN), Pope HS (GA), Wheeler HS (GA) and Soddy Daisy HS (TN). Molly has served as an instructor and color guard caption manager for the Crossmen Drum & Bugle Corps since 2014.

Molly holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications with a concentration in Public Relations from Kennesaw State University and earned a minor degree in dance.

From 2011-2014 Molly worked in a few roles at Carolina Crown; she began as a merchandise manager, photographer, graphic designer and was the first social media specialist for Crown in 2013. Most recently, Molly has been managing the social media platforms for both Crossmen Color Guard and Paramount Winter Guard.

Currently residing in Tarpon Springs, FL., Molly runs her own creative design, graphics and consultation business from home.  A few programs she has recently had the pleasure of designing for include: Eastlake HS Winter Guard (TX), Crossmen Winds (TX), Boswell HS Percussion (TX), Seymour HS (TN), Rock Island HS (IL), Powell HS (TN), Ooltewah HS (TN), Science Hill HS (TN), Cypress Springs HS (TX), Clear Brook HS (TX), Lawrence Township Winter Percussion (IN) and Kettering Fairmont HS Percussion (OH). Molly has also been on the design team with the Crossmen Drum & Bugle Corps since 2015.

Molly is very excited to be returning to ConneXus for a fifth season!

Michael Reese

Front Ensemble Coordinator
Educational Director, “ConneXion”

Member, CPAA Board of Directors

Michael Reese is an active music educator and the current Middle School Band Director for the Elida Local School District near Lima, OH.
Michael received his Bachelor of Music in Music Education from Marietta College in the Spring of 2017, along with a minor in Political Science and Certificate of Teacher Leadership. He is a proud member of NAfME and OMEA.
During his marching career, Michael performed with Legends Drum and Bugle Corps (2014), Cap City Percussion (2014-2015), Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps (2015-2016), and Rhythm X (2016-2017).
Michael is excited to spend his fifth season with ConneXus!

Nick Marquardt

Snare Technician

Nick began his marching percussion career at William Mason High School in 2009. After graduating high school, he attended the University of North Texas to study Music Education. While at North Texas, Nick studied under several professors including Christopher Deane and Paul Rennick. He also went on to play snare drum with the Santa Clara Vanguard for the 2015 and 2016 DCI seasons.

Nick now lives in Cincinnati where he is finishing his undergraduate studies in Computer Science and teaching at William Mason High School in the fall.

Colby McClellan

Logistics Coordinator
Tenor Technician

Member, CPAA Board of Directors

Colby McClellan has been part of the marching activity since 2005. He began his marching career at Hickory High School in North Carolina. During his undergraduate studies, he was a section leader for the Marching Mountaineers of Appalachian State University in Boone, NC.

He performed as tenor section leader with Carolina Gold from 2010 to 2012, during which time the corps received high percussion all three years and became the DCA Class A World Champions. During the summer of 2013, he was privileged to age out as a member of the 75th anniversary corps of the DCI Finalist Madison Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps.

Colby marched three seasons of WGI with Wake Forest Independent, based out Winston Salem, NC and served as the tenor section leader. Colby finished his WGI marching career with the MQ at Matrix during the 2014 season.

Colby has been an educator and designer for various schools throughout North Carolina. He resides in Cincinnati, Ohio where he works as a Sales and Marketing Representative, Battery Coordinator at Milford High School and Battery Instructor at Forest Hills Marching Arts.

2022 is Colby’s eighth season with ConneXus and he couldn’t be more excited to see where this family is headed!

Zach Strong

Bass Drum Technician

This will be Zach’s thirteenth season involved in the marching arts, starting back in 2010 at La Salle High School in Cincinnati. His experience with the independent side of the marching activity would begin in 2014, marching snare at ConneXus during their first year in PIO. He then went on to start his bass drumming career with Tates Creek Indoor Ensemble out of Lexington, KY. For the 2016 season, he traveled up to Indianapolis and began his three year marching career with Legacy Indoor Percussion, finally aging out there in 2018. During this time, he also spent the 2017 DCI season  as a member of The Phantom Regiment. In 2019, he transitioned from marching to teaching bass drum as a staff member of Veritas in their inaugural season in PIW.

Zach is currently studying Electromechanical Engineering at Cincinnati State with a focus in Renewable Energy. Meanwhile, he will be spending his fifth year teaching the bass drums and marching visual program for the Forest Hills Marching Arts outdoor and indoor percussion programs.

Zach currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Kristin Smith

Cymbal Technician
Alumni Relations Coordinator

Member, CPAA Board of Directors

Kristin Smith has been involved in the marching arts since 2004.

She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Bowling Green State University and is a graduate medical education program administrator for OhioHealth in Columbus, Ohio.

Her previous performance experience includes the Pickerington North HS Marching Band, the Pride of Mid-America Marching Band at Ball State University, the Falcon Marching Band at Bowling Green State University, Pioneer Drum & Bugle Corps, and Matrix.

Her past instructional experience has included percussion and visual instruction for high school and university marching bands, indoor percussion ensembles, and drum corps.  She has worked with Westerville South HS, Marion Harding HS, Central Crossing HS, the University of Toledo, Jersey Surf Drum & Bugle Corps, and Bowling Green State University.

Kristin is excited to start her eighth season with ConneXus!

Bryce Hopwood

Cymbal Technician

Bryce began his involvement with the marching arts in 2011 with the Waynesville High School marching band. In 2014 he joined Cincinnati Tradition Drum & Bugle corps where he played bass drum until 2018. Bryce joined ConneXus as a member of the cymbal line in 2018 and returned on bass drum for his age-out season in 2019.
As an instructor, Bryce has held multiple positions with several marching programs across the Dayton area. 2022 will be his second season on staff at ConneXus.
Bryce holds a BA in Music Education from Wright State University. He currently resides in Lima, Ohio, where he teaches middle school band and orchestra at Liberty Arts Magnet School.

Brandon Dodge

Front Ensemble Technician

Bio coming soon!

Bob Knowles

Front Ensemble Technician

Bio coming soon!