OkMEA Election Information
OkMEA elections will open on September 5. You will receive a Constant Contact email with an individualized voting link. This system ensures that only active and retired members vote and that they only vote one time. Reminders will be sent via Constant Contact and Facebook throughout the voting process. Voting will close on October 1.
To view the candidates biographical information, click the plus button next to their name below.
President Elect - Jeff Hastings
Jeff Hastings began his tenure as a band director in Altus, Oklahoma in 1992 is now the Director of Bands for the Altus Band program. He directs the HS marching band, symphonic band, and jazz band. He also teaches beginning percussion and general music at the Intermediate school. A 1986 graduate of Moore High School, Hastings earned a Bachelor of Music Education degree and Master of Music degree from Southwestern Oklahoma State University where he was named to Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges.
Hastings has been a clinician, conductor, and adjudicator in Oklahoma and Texas. He has served as the chairman for the OkMEA All-State Band committee, served on the Board of Directors of the Southwestern Oklahoma Band Directors Association (SWOBA) and as their Executive Secretary since 1999, served on the Board of Directors of the Oklahoma Bandmasters Association (OBA) including the position of president. He is currently the president of the Beta chapter of the International Bandmasters fraternity, Phi Beta Mu, and is the vice president of the band division of OkMEA.
Hastings’ professional affiliations include OkMEA, NAfME, Oklahoma Music Adjudicators Association, SWOBA, OBA, Phi Beta Mu, Oklahoma Education Association, Altus Education Association, and he is a lifetime member of Kappa Kappa Psi. Hastings also serves as a reserve Deputy Sheriff for the Jackson County Sheriff’s office. He is married to Kathy and has a son, Ethan.
Elementary VP - Martha O'Banion
Martha O’Banion has been teaching elementary music for 26 years in Enid. She is also the elementary music coordinator for Enid Public Schools. She has served as state chair for Circle the State with Song (2008) and the All-State Children’s Chorus (2009) as well as acted as a CTSWS region chair. She serves on the song selection committee for Circle the State. She has presented (along with her sister) at OkMEA several times. In 2010, O’Banion received the OkMEA Exemplary Teacher Award.
O’Banion is a member of Oklahoma Kodály Educators (OKE) and was secretary on the board for six years. She has presented workshops locally and nationally for the Organization of American Kodály Educators. O’Banion has been awarded the Fund for Teachers Grant twice allowing her to travel to Scotland to study Scottish Country and Ceilidh Dancing and to the east coast to study world drumming and African slave music.
O’Banion is a co-founder of Enid Community Children’s Chorus (ECCC) where she is on the board and co-directs the elementary chorus. When she is not at school, you might find her at church where she is active in the music program, serves as an elder, and sits on various committees. She has also performed for the Enid Gaslight Community Theater in numerous roles over the last 20 years.
O’Banion graduated from Phillips University with a Bachelor in Music Education degree. She obtained her Kodály certification from the University of Oklahoma in 1997 and her National Board Certification in 2004.
Choral VP - Steveanne Bielich
Steveanne Bielich is a graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma holding a bachelor’s of music education degree. Before she began teaching, Bielich performed at Premier Parks and Six Flags Amusement parks. In addition, Bielich performed in a country band and as a soloist at the Oklahoma Opry. Bielich made several appearances as a Reba McEntire impersonator for local events as well as opening a concert for Louise Mandrell.
Bielich has been at Bethany High School for 22 years where she teaches vocal music (grades 7-12). She directs six high school concert choirs and three mid-high choirs. She also directs and choreographs for the school’s five show choirs. Bielich manages the high school auditorium, runs backstage tech and choreographs the all-school musical, co-sponsors the high school pom team and is the head swim coach.
Bielich has published two music theory books entitled Musuko, based on the popular Suduko puzzle books. In 2015, Bielich served as the All-State Chair for the Mixed Chorus.
Bielich has been married for 25 years to Jon Bielich. They have a son, Dustin, who is a senior production design student at Oklahoma City University.
Band VP - Ryan Edgmon
Ryan Edgmon is proud to serve as Director of Bands and Instrumental Music Coordinator for Mustang Public Schools in Mustang, Oklahoma. Edgmon completed his degree in Instrumental Music Education at the University of Oklahoma in 2004 and is in his ninth year as Director of Bands for Mustang. Edgmon previously served as the Assistant Director of Bands at Sapulpa High School (2008-2010) and as Director of Bands for Mustang North Middle School (2005-2008).
Ensembles under Edgmon’s direction consistently experience success both musically and competitively. The Mustang Nightrider Marching Band is a consistent “Top 6” Finalist at the Class 6A Oklahoma Bandmasters Association state competition and was a 2015 Bands of America Super Regional Finalist. The Mustang Wind Ensemble is consistently an OSSAA Sweepstakes Award recipient. Two of his ensembles have been featured at the OkMEA January Conference as honor groups–Jazz Ensemble I (2012) and the Mustang High School Wind Ensemble (2015). The Mustang Wind Ensemble was selected to perform at the 2016 Music for All National Concert Band Festival as well.
Edgmon is a member of OkMEA, NAfME, Jazz Educators Network, OBA, Phi Beta Mu, and is a Conn-Selmer Educational VIP. He is an active adjudicator and clinician, as well as a freelance visual designer for marching bands. Edgmon has served as the president and treasurer for Winterguard and Percussion of Oklahoma and as chair of the OkMEA All-State Band committee.
Orchestra VP - Sarah Chan
Sarah Chan started her music career playing the cello in the 5th grade at Eisenhower Elementary School in Norman, Oklahoma. With a lot of support and encouragement from her parents and teachers, her curiosity for music grew into a daily commitment and passion for the performing arts. She graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Instrumental Music Education from The University of Oklahoma in May 2001.
During her fourteen-year career she has worked for Oklahoma City Public Schools, Mid-Del Public Schools, Putnam City Public Schools, owned and operated a private studio, and is currently a teacher for Norman Public Schools. Her job assignment in Norman includes being the orchestra teacher at Irving Middle School and Washington Elementary School. In addition to her teaching duties, she facilitates a partnership between the Irving Middle School Orchestra and the OU School of Music which provides a learning lab for music education majors. While employed with OKCPS, she was orchestra department chair, fine arts team leader, and Taft Middle School 2008-2009 Teacher of the Year. These activities steered her interests toward leadership, and she received a Master of Education in Education Administration from the University of Central Oklahoma in the spring of 2008. She also served as the 2017 OkMEA All-State Orchestra Chair.
Outside of teaching orchestras, Chan enjoys spending time with family, playing music, gardening, swimming, and traveling. She resides in her hometown, Norman, with her husband and son.
Higher Ed VP - Dr. Lani Garner
Dr. Lani Garner is a professor of Music Education at Oklahoma City University. She received her Ph.D. in Music Education at the University of Oklahoma in 2017. Her passion for teaching younger students extends through her work as a Lead Teaching Artist and an administrator at El Sistema Oklahoma. Prior to this, she worked with the K20 Center for Education and Community Renewal. Garner also spent over 18 years teaching elementary music in Norman and continues to volunteer with these schools.
As co-founder of the first elementary world-music ensemble in the state, Manyawi!, and founder of a second group, Zambuko, she shares her experiences with undergraduates interested in including “outside the box” lessons. She was chosen by the Rotary International Group Study Exchange Program in 2001 to learn from musicians and educators in Norway. Through the Fund for Teachers grant, she spent two weeks in Mhondoro, Zimbabwe, where she was immersed in the culture and music of the Shona people. In 2014, Garner spent two weeks at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music learning about traditional Chinese music and culture. She also presented research concerning music educators’ self-perceptions and implementation of classroom operations at the International Society for Music Education (ISME) World Conference in Scotland in the summer of 2016. All of her travels have contributed to her love for teaching children global connections, and she hopes to influence aspiring educators to develop authentic world music communities and creative classroom experiences.
President Elect - Leah McDonald
Leah McDonald teaches elementary music at Heritage and is Elementary Music Facilitator for Edmond Public Schools. She is the chair of the Great Expectations committee at Heritage (a GE Model School) and is also active in her school’s leadership committee. She has served OkMEA as vice president for the Elementary division, Children’s All-State Chorus co-chair, Circle the State with Song state co-chair, and regional co-chair. McDonald conducts Edmond Youth Chorus, a group of 4th-8th grade auditioned students, through the Fine Arts Institute of Edmond.
A graduate of Oklahoma State University, McDonald holds a bachelor’s degree in vocal music education and a master’s degree in vocal pedagogy and performance, as well as graduate training in Kodály and Orff methodologies. She is the 2007 inaugural recipient of the Oklahoma Fine Arts Educator Award, the 2004 Edmond Teacher of the Year, and a finalist for the 2004 Oklahoma Teacher of the Year. She was also an OkMEA Exemplary Teacher in 2014. McDonald has served as a clinician for CTSWS, as well as various regional and church honor choruses.
McDonald is a member of OkMEA, NAfME, ACDA, Oklahoma Kodály Educators, Organization of American Kodály Educators, and the American Orff-Schulwerk Association. As a professional musician, McDonald sings in the 9:00am, 11:00am and Evensong Choirs at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral in Oklahoma City. McDonald’s spouse is Kevin, and she is mother of Ella Kate and Emily.
Elementary VP - Robin Wall
Robin Wall was drawn to teaching music through the excellent teaching examples of her grandmother and mother and the musical influence of her father. Their influence, and her positive experience at Oklahoma Baptist University, prepared her for her music teaching career.
In 2009, after staying home with her three children for eleven years, she stepped into the music classroom. Wall had been accompanying and choreographing the Hefner Middle School choirs for the three years prior to becoming the music teacher at Hefner. She taught at Hefner in Putnam City from 2009-2012.
In 2012, she relocated to Owasso with her family for her husband, Chris, to accept the position of Senior Pastor at FBC Owasso. Wall opened a private piano studio for one year before returning to the classroom in 2013 to teach at Barnes Elementary School in Owasso. Wall has grown as a teacher at Barnes. She has attended every workshop possible, gaining knowledge and inspiration for her teaching. She also holds Level 1 Orff-Schulwerk certification and has completed two levels of Kodály training. In 2017, Wall was named Barnes Teacher of the Year and went on to become the Owasso District Teacher of Year as well.
Wall has served as state co-chair for Circle the State with Song (2017) and state co-chair for the Children’s All-State Chorus (2018). She is looking forward to another great school year full of making music with her students!
Choral VP - Justin Ediger
Justin Ediger is a native of Beaver and is currently in his 26th year of teaching. Ediger holds a Bachelor of Music Education and a Master of Music from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. In 2005, he earned his National Board Certification.
Ediger is in his 22nd year at Elk City where he co-teaches one junior high and two high school choirs, teaches high school music humanities, and is administrator of the Pioneer Performing Arts Center and Kelli O’Hara Theater. His junior high choirs have earned superior ratings at the district level while the high school has won the OSSAA 4A Sweepstakes award eight times. Elk City choirs have been selected four times as OkMEA honor organizations. He has been a guest conductor for the EOCDA, COCDA, ECOCDA and the Southwest Kansas Choral Directors Association honor choirs. He is a member of the Western Oklahoma Choral Directors Association (past president and Director of Distinction), OCDA, OkMEA, and OEA. He is also a former board member and All-State chair for both the OCDA Jazz and Junior High choruses. Ediger has been a guest performer with recording artist Ben Folds and is a frequent adjudicator for OSSAA.
Ediger is chancel choir director for the Elk City United Methodist Church. He has two children and two step-children, Anna Mueller of Columbus, MS, Drew Ediger (a freshman at OU), Jonah White (a junior music theater major at OCU), and Hannah White (a freshman at Elk City High School). His wife, Jo, is a real estate agent for RE/MAX All American Realty in Elk City.
Band VP - Jeramy Haas
Jeramy Haas currently serves as Director of Bands for Duncan Public Schools, a position he has held since 2003. Haas started his teaching career in Okeene in 1987. During his tenure, his bands received superior ratings at the district level and, in 1990, the high school band earned the OSSAA Sweepstakes Award. In 1990, Haas moved to Cordell where his bands earned superior ratings at district contest all 13 years he was in residence. The Cordell HS Band received the OSSAA Sweepstakes award in 1996, 2002, and 2003 and the OSSAA Outstanding Achievement Award in 1993 and 1998. Since arriving in Duncan, the DHS Bands have also experienced success at contest. They received the OSSAA Sweepstakes Award in 2004, 2007, 2010-2015 and the OSSAA Outstanding Achievement Award in 2006 and 2016.
Haas has served as president of the Southwest Oklahoma Band Directors Association (SWOBA), the Shortgrass Band Directors Association, OBA, and the Oklahoma Music Adjudicators Association. In 1994, Haas was selected as the Band Director of the Year by SWOBA. He was also selected as Teacher of the Year for Cordell Schools in 1994 and 1999. In 2014, Haas received OBA’s Band Director of the Year award.
Haas holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in instrumental music education from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. He is a graduate of Campbell County High School in Gillette, Wyoming. Haas resides in Duncan with his wife, Dawn, and three children; Scott, Jessica, Joshua.
Orchestra VP - Kristin Geist
Kristin Geist serves as the orchestra director at Western Oaks Middle School in the Putnam City School district. She has also led Oklahoma Youth Orchestra’ Festival Strings of Edmond since 2008 and has conducted area festival orchestras in Tulsa and Norman. She served as treasurer for North Central Honor Orchestra for ten years, and she was the OkMEA All-State Orchestra chair in 2010-2011.
Geist is a graduate of Oklahoma City University where she earned her bachelor’s in music education. She completed a graduate degree in educational leadership at the University of Central Oklahoma. Formerly, she was the orchestra director at Barbara Bush Middle School in Carrollton Farmers-Branch Independent School district in Texas. More recently, she served as the Cheyenne Middle School orchestra director (Edmond Public Schools) which consistently received superior ratings and performed as one of the 2016 OkMEA Honor Orchestras.
She and her husband, Nick, reside in Oklahoma City with their children, Andrew and Eleanor.
Higher Ed VP - Dr. Casey Gerber
Casey Gerber is an assistant professor of music education at The University of Oklahoma. He also coordinates and teaches in The University of Oklahoma Kodály Institute. Gerber previously taught at Oklahoma Baptist University and The University of Mississippi. He also taught elementary/general music in Oklahoma public schools. A native of Weatherford, Gerber holds the B.M.E. and M.M. degrees from Southwestern Oklahoma State University and a Ph.D. from The University of Mississippi. He received his national Kodály certification from The University of Oklahoma and has training in Orff-Schulwerk from Southwestern Oklahoma State University.
Gerber was given the Alexander Ringer Award for doctoral research by the Organization of American Kodály Educators in 2011 for his dissertation entitled, “Ear Training and Music Reading Methods Used by Philip C. Hayden: Music Literacy Through Rhythm Forms.” Gerber has published articles on a variety of topics in music education and presented papers and workshops throughout the United States. In addition, he frequently serves as an elementary and middle school choral clinician. His research interests include the history of music education in the United States and the use of popular music in music classrooms.