MBDA Northwest Region (NWMBDA)

  1. Calendar
  2. Documents
  3. Board of Directors
  4. Schools

Northwest Region Calendar of Events

7-12 Honor Band - January 11, 2020 in Fergus Falls, MN
9-12 Jazz Honor Band - Saturday, March 28, 2020 in New York Mills, MN
Beginning Band Festival - Saturday, April 18, 2020 in Moorhead, MN


NW MBDA Membership Welcome Letter 2019-2020


Meeting Minutes

Wednesday, September 11th, 2019 - Meeting Minutes 


Northwest Region Board of Directors 



President/Jazz Band Chair

Derek Ziemer

Derek Ziemer is the Associate Director of Bands at Alexandria Public Schools in Alexandria, MN. Originally from St.Cloud Minnesota, Derek is a 2014 graduate of the University of Minnesota Morris.

Prior to his position in Alexandria, Mr.Ziemer was the 5-12 Director of Bands at Brandon-Evansville Public Schools from 2014 to 2016.

Mr. Ziemer's duties at Alexandria include directing the 7th Grade Cardinal and Viking Bands, High School Runestone and Viking Bands, High School Jazz Bands, and Pep Band. Mr. Ziemer is also an active performer in the Alexandria Area; most notably as a Bassoonist in the Central Lakes Symphony Orchestra(CLSO). Mr. Ziemer is also a member of MMEA, MBDA, and serves as the NWMBDA Jazz Festival Coordinator.



Secretary/7-12 Honor Band Site Host

Denise Wiese

Mrs. Denise Wiese graduated from NDSU (BS) and the University of St Thomas (MA).

Denise started her teaching career in Chokio - Alberta Public Schools where she taught both choir and band for 5 years. Denise then became part of the music staff in Fergus Falls Public Schools where she has taught for 30 years.  In her time as a music staff member in Fergus Falls, the school has 3 times been named a Best Community for Music Education, and once as a Grammy Signature School.

Denise's current teaching responsibilities include 6th grade band, 7th grade band, and junior high honors band.  Band lessons are taught to mostly woodwinds and percussion, with a few brass mixed in.  

Denise also works with high school band students as an accompanist for solo/ensemble, as the color guard director for the marching band, and as an assistant director for the pep band.

Mrs. Wiese is a member of MENC, MMEA, and MBDA.

Treasurer/Jazz Band Site Host

Michelle Robertus

Michelle Robertus is the Director of Bands at New York Mills Public Schools in New York Mills, Minnesota. Originally from Albertville, Ms. Robertus graduated from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities with her Bachelor of Music in Music Education in 2014.

Ms. Robertus’s duties at NYM include directing the 5th Grade Band, 6th Grade Band, Junior High Band, Senior High Band, and teaching lessons to 5th and 6th grade band students. She also directs the Pep Band, Junior High Jazz Band, Senior High Jazz Band, and New York Mills Marching Eagles, a summer parade band that has recently performed in Orlando, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. and is on its way to Philadelphia for their 250th St. Patrick's Day Parade.

Ms. Robertus is an active musician in area ensembles, including the Lakes Area Community Concert Band (clarinet, Detroit Lakes) and Lakes Area All-Stars Jazz Band (alto sax, Fergus Falls).


Brian Selander


 Social Media & Concert Recordings

Chuck Speer

Chuck Speer has been teaching band for 22 years. He graduated from Moorhead State University with a B.S. in Music Education in 1996. For the past 5 years he has been the Director of Bands At Long Prairie-Grey Eagle Secondary School in Long Prairie, MN. His duties include all instrumental ensembles in grades 7-12: Concert Bands, Pep Band, Jazz Band, Percussion Ensemble, and Summer Marching Band. Prior to that he held similar positions at West Central Area Secondary Schools (Barrett MN) , Underwood School (Underwood MN) , Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City Junior-Senior High, (Grove City MN) and Turtle Lake-Mercer School (Turtle Lake ND).

Mr. Speer is a member of MBDA, MMEA/NAfME, and the Barbershop Harmony Society. He has performed with several groups in the Willmar MN and Fargo-Moorhead Areas. Currently he is performing with the Fargo-Moorhead Jazz Orchestra, and The West Central Connection Chorus in Willmar. He is also an on-call musician with the Long Prairie Chamber Orchestra. His interests/hobbies outside of teaching band include technology, sound production, and the Recording Arts.


Honor Band Chair

Tim Siewert

Tim Siewert has been the director of bands at Detroit Lakes High School since 2015. He directs the Wind Ensemble, Concert Band, Jazz Band, Pep Band, and Marching Band.

Prior to Detroit Lakes he held similar positions in Pierz, MN for one year, and New Richland, MN for five years. Siewert holds a degree from Minnesota State University, Mankato. He is active as an adjudicator/clinician/judge/section coach for MMEA, MBDA, and MSHSL.

Siewert also plays trumpet with the Lakes Area Community Concert Band, the Lakes Area All Stars big band, subs with Doc and the Scrubs big band, and also at area churches. Aside from music and teaching, he enjoys umpiring/coaching baseball, riding motorcycle, golfing, being at the lake, and spending time with his wife Kaitlin and their dog Maggie.


Honor Band Chair

Brad Thompson

Mr. Brad Thompson grew up in rural Northwest Minnesota near the town of Donaldson and received his high school education at Kennedy Public School. He earned his Bachelor of Music in Music Education degree at the University of North Dakota in 1993.

Brad has been teaching at Tri-County Public School in Karlstad since 2001, where in the morning he teaches 5-12 lessons, Elementary Band and a combined 7-12 High School Band.  In the afternoon, he puts on his work boots and teaches 7-12th grade students in Drafting, Welding, Auto Mechanics, and the Construction trades. In the evenings, he directs the Pep-Band at their many events and also coaches both the Junior High and Senior High Knowledge Bowl teams during the Winter and Spring of the year, as well as driving school bus.  When time permits, he has also likes to play trumpet in the Northland Community Band in Thief River Falls.

Previously, Brad was the 5-12 Instrumental Music teacher at Hot Springs Public School from 1993-2001 in Hot Springs, South Dakota.  He was also a Trumpet Instructor, during Cadet Band week, at the International Music Camp from 2004-2013.  

In his free time, he likes to fish(in the summer), collect and work on vintage Jonsered chainsaws, and build with both wood and metal in the shop.


Greg DeGier 2009

Beginning Band Festival Chair

Gregory DeGier

Greg DeGier has been in the Alexandria Area School system since 1998. Over the years he has taught at the high school level, directing the Symphonic Band, the Pep Band, being the Associate Marching Band Director and the Head Jazz Band Director. Greg also taught at the middle school level, teaching the 9th Grade Symphonic Winds and the 7thGrade Viking Band.  

Greg fully transitioned into the middle school level in 2014 and now teaches at the Discovery Middle School, being responsible for the 6th Grade Bands, 8th Grade Bands and the DMS Jazz Band. He also is the lesson teacher for the 7th Grade Bands.

Before Greg started teaching in Alexandria he taught at the Clinton-Graceville Schools in Graceville, MN, from 1989 to 1998 and the Grant-Deuel Schools in Revillo, SD, from 1987 to 1989.

Mr. DeGier graduated from the University of Minnesota, Morris, in 1986, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Education. He has also studied Instrumental Conducting with Dr. Rik Hansen at St. Cloud State University.

Greg is a member of Minnesota Music Educators Association (MMEA), National Association for Music Educators (NAfME) and Minnesota Band Directors Association (MBDA). Greg served on the NW Regional Board for MBDA as president-elect and president. He also served on the State MBDA Board as the 9-10 Jazz Audition Coordinator.

Mr. DeGier is a member of the Central Lakes Symphony Orchestra where he serves as principal trumpet and associate conductor. He also plays lead trumpet for Doc’s All Stars, a local swing dance band in Alexandria.  Greg has also been involved with the local community theatre, directing and playing in the pit orchestra for several musical productions.  

Mr. DeGier is currently serving a three-year term on the Lakes Region Arts Council (LRAC) representing Douglas County.


Beginning Band Festival Site Host

Tim Pipinich

Tim Pipinich has taught band in the public schools for nearly ten years and is currently one of two band directors at Horizon Middle School in Moorhead, MN where he leads the 6th and 8th grade bands as well as the honor band and jazz band. During his time at Horizon, he has hosted the Dallas Brass and had bands awarded with outstanding band of the day/festival at the Raging Red Band Festival at NDSU for two consecutive years. He received his Bachelor of Music degree from Concordia College in 2010, and he also has played trombone regionally with the FM Jazz Orchestra, the Imperials, Dempseyś Big Band, and as an occasional sub with Post Traumatic Funk Syndrome and the FM Orchestra. He and his wife Katie have two fantastic future instrumentalist daughters, Olivia (2) and Madeline (1).

Repertoire List:

Repertoire List by Grade: 7-8, 9-10, 11-12

Beginning Band Festival: 1st Year, 2nd Year

Honor Jazz Festival: Repertoire List


For logistical purposes, this roster contains high school, college, and university institutions. The regional assignment for elementary and middle schools is currently identified by the name of the HIGH SCHOOL that serves your student population.


Anoka-Ramsey Community College (Coon Rapids)
Bemidji State University
Concordia College (Moorhead)
Fergus Falls Community College
Northland Community College (Thief River Falls)
Minnesota State University-Moorhead








Battle Lake








Cass Lake-Bena

Circle Of Life, White Earth




Country Bible Christian, Ashby


Detroit Lakes


Eagle Valley, Eagle Bend

East Grand Forks

Fergus Falls






Greenbush-Middle River





Hillcrest Lutheran Academy, Fergus Falls



Kittson Central, Hallock

Lake of the Woods, Baudette

Lake Park-Audubon

Lake Region Christian School, Baxter




Marshall County Central, Newfolden


Minnewaska Area



New York Mills

Norman County East, Twin Valley

Norman County West, Halstad

North Star Christian Academy, Little Falls

Northland, Remer



Park Christian, Moorhead

Park Rapids Area

Parkers Prairie

Pelican Rapids

Pequot Lakes



Pine River-Backus

Red Lake

Red Lake County Central, Oklee

Red Lake Falls



Sacred Heart, East Grand Forks



Stephen-Argyle Central

Thief River Falls

Tri-County, Karlstad




Wadena-Deer Creek





West Central Area School, Barrett


Win-E-Mac, Erskine