Board of Directors
Emily Ruetz, Chair
Emily has been involved with Minnesota Brass since 2014. She performed with the summer drum corps, SoundSport group, and the winter drumline from 2014-2016, and 2018-2019. She has taught the front ensemble at Irondale HS and MBI Indoor for several years. Emily is the Senior Manager of Applications & Technology for the National States Geographic Information Council. This is her third year on the Board.
Dave Whitaker, Treasurer
Dave first joined MBI in 1990 in the Baritone section, sharing a spot with Cindy Bach for his first season. Since then, he has been a performing member for 6 scattered years, a member of the visual staff, and has performed other administrative and technical roles. Dave has served on the board, as member and chair, for 15+ years, and has been part of the executive team for the past 10+ years. As his time available to devote to MBI diminishes with his growing family and personal commitments, he looks forward to returning to the board to share his experience, and to ensure a secure future for the organization.
Gwynne Byrne, Recording Secretary
Gwynne first joined Minnesota Brass in 1974 as a member of the color guard. As she no longer has the
agility and abilities required by the guard, she moved to working with the support staff. Gwynne met her husband, Pat (who joined MBI in 1972 but was in the army when she started) in 1976. Their family has been a part of the corps since then.
As she am no longer able to march, she works on uniforms when asked and other support projects as
they come along.
In 1990, Gwynne was asked to be the corps secretary and accepted. In recent years, this role was ended so she moved to perform the role of recording secretary for the Board of Directors.
Bridger Herman has been with Minnesota Brass since 2015, participating as a member of the winter drumline front ensemble. Since aging out of indoor drumline, he has continued to work with the organization as a summer marching member, front ensemble instructor, audio engineer, and fleet manager. He is also a Ph.D. candidate and graduate student instructor at the University of Minnesota, studying and teaching computer science and data visualization.
Bridger’s top priority as a board member is building a solid operational team to ensure the safe and timely transportation of equipment that enables Minnesota Brass’s ensembles to function.
Mary Stennes has been involved with Minnesota Brass since she joined the summer color guard in 2009. Going on to march 6 summers with the corps, she also performed in MBI Winter Guard before aging out in 2013. She was asked to join the staff of MBIWG in 2014 where she remains dedicated to keeping the MBI legacy strong and helping the program grow.
Mary’s goal on the board is to be an outspoken advocate for the Minnesota Brass color guard programs and bring a new, creative perspective to conversations about the future of the corps.
Joanna first joined Minnesota Brass in 2014, filling a mellophone hole after her first summer performing with the Colts Drum and Bugle Corps. After her second and final summer with the Colts in 2015, she returned to the summer corps to fill a backfield drum major hole. Later that same year, Joanna joined Minnesota Brass Indoor on cymbals and went on to march 3 more seasons until her ageout in 2018. She also marched a full season with the summer corps in 2016 on mellophone before her DCI ageout with Oregon Crusaders Drum and Bugle Corps as an assistant drum major.
In her non-band-related life, Joanna works in advertising as a copywriter using her creative wit and humor to write TV commercials, radio spots, print advertisements, social media posts, and just about anything else you can think of. She attributes her ingenuity and talent as a creative person to her time spent in the marching arts. Joanna is eager to bring her passion and inventiveness to the MBI Board in hopes of giving back to the organization that has given her so much.
Paul Terry is the director of bands at Brooklyn Middle STEAM School, where he directs three Concert Bands, The Bulldog Jazz Band, and teaches Introduction to Band. Paul also instructs the Park Center Senior High Pirate Marching Band, and Grove Area Percussion (GAP) where he serves as visual instructor.
Paul began his drum corps career in 2005 in the DCA circuit with Minnesota Brass Drum and Bugle Corps. In his time with the corps he helped lead them to three high-brass titles and a DCA world championship in 2011. In 2014 and ’15, Paul was also a low-brass technician for the Colts of Dubuque, Iowa. Paul spent 2019 as the Visual Caption Head of the Seattle Cascades Drum and Bugle Corps, where he helped lead the corps back to a semi-finals performance.
In his time off Paul loves playing golf with his daughter Shea, and taking their Greyhound Vicki, for (short and fast) walks. Paul is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, with a degree in music education, and holds a master’s degree in music education from Boston University.