William Griffel, Purdue Musical Organizations and Varsity Glee Club Director
William E. Griffel is thrilled to be serving as the Director of Purdue Musical Organizations at Purdue University, as well as the Director of the Purdue Varsity Glee Club.
William has served as a guest conductor and collaborator with the Purdue University Bands, the Lafayette Symphony Orchestra, and has performed with the Indianapolis Men’s Chorus, Indianapolis Children’s Chorus, the Indiana State FFA Chorus, the Northwest Indiana Symphony Orchestra in 2013, and the La Port Symphony Orchestra in 2015 with the Purdue Varsity Glee Club.
William has traveled both nationally and internationally as a director and performer. In the spring of 2013, William led three ensembles from Purdue Musical Organizations through four countries on their Historic Journey of Discovery Tour of Europe and in the spring of 2017, William conducted the Purdue Varsity Glee Club on a two week tour of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. He is sought after annually as an adjudicator, clinician and vocal coach for choral programs across the United States. As a vocalist, William is an avid barbershopper as well as performing professionally with some of the most nationally and internationally recognized organizations.
His voice can be heard on many commercial and professional recordings by some of the most recognizable publishing companies in the United States such as Warner Brothers, GIA Publications, Hal Leonard Publications, G. Shirmer and Hinshaw Press.
William received his bachelor’s degree in Music Education and Vocal Performance from Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wisconsin. He went on to receive a Master’s Degree in Vocal Performance and a Performance Certificate in Vocal Performance from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois.
In 2015 and 2016, William was selected as a quarterfinalist for the prestigious GRAMMY’s Music Educator Award from the Grammy Foundation in Los Angeles, California, which was created to bring attention and recognition to the teaching profession in general and to school music educators in particular. William resides in Lafayette, Indiana, with his wife Stephanie and their children Chelsea, Rae, Wil and Josie.
Rhonda Blacklock, Purdue Bells and Heart & Soul Director
Rhonda Blacklock is one of four Assistant Directors at Purdue Musical Organizations at Purdue University. She is the Director of Purdue Bells, the only instrumental ensemble at PMO, as well as the Director of Heart & Soul, PMO’s gospel choir. Rhonda also maintains successful piano studios in both West Lafayette and Lebanon.
Rhonda serves Area 5, Handbell Musicians of America, as Chair-elect for 2017-2019. She will become the Chair of Area 5 in 2019, serving the guild until 2021. Rhonda has served HMA (previously AGEHR, Inc.) previously as Area 5 Membership Chair and Indiana State Chair. An active clinician specializing in high bell techniques, Rhonda has taught at the local, state and national level.
Prior to working for Purdue, she was the Director of Music at Grace United Methodist Church in Franklin, Indiana, serving as organist, handbell director, choral accompanist and a member of the worship planning team. A church musician since the age of 12, Rhonda has served many churches and denominations throughout the Midwest in both traditional and contemporary music.
Rhonda holds a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from the American Conservatory of Music (Chicago, IL) and also a Master of Music degree in piano performance from Bradley University (Peoria, IL). She and her husband, Ron, have two adult children, both who are newly married. The Blacklocks reside in Lebanon, Indiana with their furry four-legged children, Cooper and Chloe.
Chrissy Crawley, Marketing & Communications Coordinator
Chrissy Crawley is proud to serve as the Marketing & Communications Coordinator for Purdue Musical Organizations. Chrissy is a native of Crown Point, Indiana and earned her bachelor’s degree in English Education and Theatre at Purdue University. During her time at Purdue, Chrissy was honored to be a member of the Purduettes where she served as the Assistant Manager and Chairwoman of Gold.
After graduating from Purdue in 2013, Chrissy taught 7th grade English Language Arts in Crown Point for two years before returning to PMO in June 2016. Chrissy and her husband James are thrilled to be living in Lafayette and working for the University. In her spare time, Chrissy enjoys traveling, singing, hiking outdoors, and spending time with friends and family. Chrissy is excited to be back at PMO and working with the dedicated staff and students of this organization.
Jenny Grayless, Account Clerk
Scott Hines, Varsity Glee Club Assistant Director
Scott Hines is excited to serve as Assistant Director for the Purdue Varsity Glee Club and as director of the specialty groups Ba-Na-Na, Flashbacks, Lighthouse, Voiceovers, and the Christmas Show 10-n-10 dancers.
For the past 25 years, Scott has worked as a freelance director, choreographer, accompanist, arranger, and vocalist. The past 16 years have been spent as director/producer of Elite Energy Show Choir in Decatur, Illinois. He has also lived and worked as a freelance musician in Nashville and New York City.
He has been on the staff of Show Choir Camps of America, Rising Stars Show Choir Camp, and Eastern Illinois University Summer Music Camps and has adjudicated and served as a clinician for several contests/festivals throughout the country.
Scott received his education at Eastern Illinois University and Belmont University.
Rachel Mirkin, Scheduling & Events Coordinator
Rachel Mirkin is the Scheduling & Events Coordinator for Purdue Musical Organizations. Rachel received her bachelor’s degree from Purdue’s Brian Lamb School of Communication in 2011. As an undergraduate, she served as historian and president of Purdue’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America and is currently a member of the Hoosier chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.
Prior to returning to Purdue, Rachel served as the Special Events and Membership Services Coordinator for the Potawatomi Zoological Society in South Bend, IN for three years. She participated as a member of the Society’s Development Committee and also served the Big Brothers Big Sisters organization of St. Joseph County.
She and her husband, Daniel, have twin daughters, Eleanora and Ryan, and live in Lafayette with their two dogs, Milo and Libby. She is happy to be back on campus and working for Purdue.
Jacob Stensberg, Assistant Director of Purduettes and University Choir, Director of All-Campus and Community Chorale and PMO Kids Choir
Jacob is excited to serve PMO as the Assistant Director to the Purduettes and University Choir, and as director of All-Campus and Community Choir, PMO Kids Choir, and the specialty groups including the Purduette Trio, the Holy Cowgirls, Lonely Hearts, and Chamber Choir.
Jacob received his undergraduate degree in Music Education from Carroll College in Waukesha, WI, before going on to direct music programs in the D.C. Everest and Wautoma Public School Districts.
In New York City, Jacob worked in the music departments of the Lycée Français and Marymount Schools, served as the Assistant Director of Choral Chameleon, and was the chorusmaster and organist at The Episcopal Church of the Nativity.
He received his Master’s Degree in Choral Conducting from Butler University in Indianapolis. While there, he also taught coursework in music theory and ear training, conducted ad-hoc ensembles, the Butler Chorale, and the Butler Symphony Orchestra. He frequently played keyboard for local musical theater productions, and performed with the Circle City Chamber Choir, Indianapolis Symphonic Choir, and Tabernacle Presbyterian Church Choir.
Marietta Taylor, Business Manager
Marietta Taylor is a native of Covington, Indiana. She started her college career at Pensacola Christian College in Florida and transferred to Purdue University for several courses before earning her bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Indiana Wesleyan.
Marietta’s professional career started in banking followed by contract work at Stuart & Branigin. These were followed by gift fund and real estate management at Purdue Research Foundation. Before returning to Purdue, Marietta worked as a financial analyst. She is excited to use the knowledge gained by these experiences in her role as PMO Business Manager. Marietta resides in West Lafayette and enjoys traveling and spending time with family and loved ones.
Jeff Vallier, Director of Purduettes, University Choir and Recruitment
Jeff Vallier is a graduate of South High School in Waukesha, Wisconsin. He received his bachelor of music degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He majored in cello and voice and was a four-year member of the concert choir under the direction of the legendary Robert Fountain. In 1999, he earned his master’s degree in choral conducting at Western Michigan University with Dr. Craig S. Arnold.
Jeff served as Department Chair and Director of Vocal Music at Lakeview High School in Battle Creek, Michigan, from 1989-2001. From 2001-08, he directed the advanced women’s concert/show choir and the advanced mixed concert choir at Jefferson High School in Lafayette. The Varsity Singers were among the top choirs featured annually at the ISSMA State Finals as well as the IMEA and ACDA state and divisional conventions.
He has performed and directed in Carnegie Hall, Germany, France, Austria, Czechoslovakia, Italy, and Switzerland. Jeff is a frequent adjudicator, clinician, and arranger for vocal ensembles throughout the United States.
Jeff is passionate about people, music, and life. He is a devoted husband to his wife, Sarah, and an active father for his three children, Adin, Riley, and Julia.
Kris Webster, Administrative Assistant
Kris Webster is originally from Lafayette, Indiana, and earned her bachelor’s degree in Commercial Recreation Studies at Purdue University. During her time at Purdue, Kris was honored to be a member of the Purduettes. As a proud Purdue alum, Kris is excited to “be back home” and serve as the Administrative Assistant to PMO.
After graduating from Purdue in 1988, Kris worked in the Resort & Travel industry as well as in Retail Management before returning to PMO as a staff member. Kris and her husband Denny, also a Purdue alum, live on the family farm in Crawfordsville, Indiana.
Kris enjoys traveling, singing, volunteering with the 4H programs in both Montgomery and Tippecanoe Counties, and spending time with friends and family. Kris is excited to be back at PMO and working with such a great organization.
Colton Withers, Associate Director, Donor & Alumni Relations and Operations
Colton Withers serves as the Associate Director of Purdue Musical Organizations, responsible for Alumni & Donor Relations and Operations. In his work, Colton hopes to create meaningful opportunities for PMO alumni and supporters to engage with and feel connected to this storied and truly remarkable program. Colton feels strongly that PMO is home for students, alumni, and supporters alike and encourages you to stop by Bailey Hall whenever you’re on campus.
Prior to his position as Associate Director, Colton served as PMO’s Director of Development with the Purdue Foundation. Colton is a graduate of Purdue University and is currently pursuing his executive master’s degree from Indiana University’s Lilly School of Philanthropy. During his time as a student, Colton Withers sang with the Purdue Varsity Glee Club and is thrilled to be working at his ‘home away from home’.
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Ralph & Bettye Bailey Hall
359 Northwestern Ave
West Lafayette, IN 47906
Bailey Hall (BALY on campus maps) is located at the corner of Grant St. and Northwestern Ave.