Call the Band Office at (785) 532-3816 to connect with any of our staff.

Sarah StroleSenior Administrative 

Sarah StroleSarah's Bio

Originally from Topeka, Sarah lived in Wichita before moving to Manhattan this summer. She moved with her dog, Charlie, and her husband Brian, who is working towards his Masters in Theatre with an emphasis in playwriting here at K-State. Sarah is excited to be working with the School of MTD, the Band Office and with the best bands in the country!

Kathleen HenaoClassy Cat 

Kathleen HeanoKathleen's Bio

Kathleen assumed her duties as the Classy Cat Coordinator January 2000. After spending eleven years as the director of the Golden Gale Dance Team and a FACS instructor at Field Kindley High School in Coffeyville, Kansas.

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Henao also served as head cheerleading coach for four years and tennis coach for five years. Her dance teams have been recipients of numerous awards and have participated in many distinguished performances. Henao has coached several All-Americans. She has had many dance members who have or are currently dancing at prestigious Division I, Division II, and Community Colleges. Henao a native of Topeka, KS.


B.S. Apparel Design, Kansas State University, 1981 Family Consumer Science, Washburn University

Shannon Meis Twirling 

Shannon MeisShannon's Bio

Shannon was raised in Dodge City, KS and currently resides in Salina with her husband Kris and two children, Lauren and Logan, where she is the Instructor/Coach and Owner of Shannon's Stars Athletic Twirling Club.

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Shannon's credentials include numerous local, state, regional, and national advanced level awards. She has produced feature twirlers for three universities, including K-State. Shannon performed as the K-State Feature Twirler from 1985-89 and is currently a licensed National Baton Twirling Association judge.


B.S. Education, Kansas State University,1989
M.S. Curriculum & Instruction with Library Media Specialist, 1994

Sydney TopliffColor Guard 

SydneyTSydney's Bio

Originally from Wichita, Sydney was a member of The Pride for 5 years. While studying Elementary Education with an emphasis in math, she completed a minor in music and was a member of the volleyball band as well as Cat Band playing saxophone. Currently she is finishing up her undergraduate degree in education by student teaching in Manhattan and will begin working on her masters degree in Curriculum and Instruction in the spring of 2015.


Alex WimmerGraduate 

Alex WimmerAlex's Bio

Alex taught for five years in Gretna, NE where he was the Director of Bands at Gretna High School and the Assistant Director of Bands at Gretna Middle School.  Alex has maintained a healthy private percussion studio and is an active percussion arranger and clinician. 

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He has performed with the UNO Wind Ensemble, the UNO University Band, the Heartland Philharmonic Orchestra, the UNO Chamber Orchestra, the UNO Percussion Ensemble, the Omaha Percussion Ensemble, the Nebraska Wind Symphony, and the Omaha Symphonic Winds.  His professional affiliations include the Nebraska Music Educators Association, the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association, the National Association for Music Education, the Percussive Arts Society, and Kappa Kappa Psi.  Alex was also a recipient of the Jack R. Snider Young Band Director Award in 2011.  Alex enjoys spending his free time with his wife Anna, exercising, and being outdoors.


B.M. Music Education with emphasis in K-12 Education, University of Nebraska-Omaha, 2007

Adam LaddGraduate 

Adam LaddAdam's Bio

While studying at OSU Adam performed regularly as a trumpet player in the university's wind symphony, marching band, symphony orchestra, and trumpet ensemble. After graduating Adam taught 5th-12th grade instrumental music for four years in the public schools of Huron, OH where he served as the director of the high school's marching and concert bands.

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Under his direction the Huron concert band consistently earned top ratings at district and state level contest events in Ohio. While working in Huron, Adam was an active musician in the community, performing as a freelance trumpet player, private studio teacher, member of the North Coast concert band, member of the OSU Erie county alumni band, and as director of the Vacationland concert band. Adam now lives in Manhattan with his wife Julie and his dog Finny.


B.M. Music Education with minor in Business, Ohio State University, 2008

Benjamin YanceyGraduate 

Ben YanceyBen's Bio

During his collegiate years he also studied with Florida Orchestra’s principle percussionist John Shaw and Washburn University professor Dr. Tom Morgan.

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After obtaining his degree Benjamin worked as a freelance musician in the Orlando, Florida area and performed with many groups such as the Festival Singers of Florida, the Sarasota Concert Band, the FloriMezzo group of Tampa and his self-started PANgaea Duo. He also worked as a percussion instructor for both Orange County and Seminole County Public Schools.


B.M. Music Education, University of Central Florida, 2009

Chris JohnsonGraduate Assistant 

Chris JohnsonChris' Bio

Chris Johnson received the Bachelor of Music Education degree from Kansas State University in 2008. He spent four years as the assistant band director in the McPherson, KS school district where he taught middle school band, middle school jazz band, instructed the high school drumline, and assisted with the high school concert band. He was also an active performing musician on clarinet, and served as a member of the Salina Symphony, Hutchinson Symphony, and Salina Community Theater pit orchestra.

Emily RothGraduate Assistant 

Emily JonesEmily's Bio

Emily Roth graduated from Doane College in Nebraska, in 2009. Emily has taught 5th-12th grade band at Centura Public School for 4 years and also performs in the 43rd Nebraska Army National Guard Band on saxophone.

Alex CookGraduate Assistant 

Alex CookAlex's Bio

Alex is a 2012 graduate of Kansas State University and holds a bachelor's degree in Music Education. Upon graduation Alex accepted a job with Jayhawk-Linn schools in Mound City, KS, where he served as the 5th through 12th grade band and choir director for two years. He is an active member in the National Association for Music Education, KMEA, and is a member of both Kappa Kappa Psi and Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia music fraternities.

 Daniel HaddadGraduate Assistant  

HaddadDaniel's Bio

Daniel is originally from Seattle, WA where he recieved his B.A. / B.M. from the University of Washington in Percussion Performance and Music Education, and his M.A. from Florida Atlantic University with an emphasis in Instrumental Conducting and Music Education. While at the University of Washington Dan was a member of the marching band, wind ensemble and percussion ensemble in addition to playing with the Seattle Blue Thunder Drumline. While in Florida, he was a graduate assistant in charge of the drumline for the Fighting Owls Marching Band in addition to being a conducting associate for the wind ensemble and symphonic band. He also helped start and direct the FAU Percussion Ensemble. After graduation Dan spent 7 years as the Director of Bands at Cheyenne High School in North Las Vegas Nevada where his groups travelled and performed at a high level throughout the western United States including a trip to the WGI World Champioships in Dayton, Ohio.

Dan is a member of the National Association for Music Education, Kansas Music Educators Association, the College Band Directors National Association and a Vic Firth Educational Team Member.