(ROSEMONT, ILLINOIS) - The Cavaliers are pleased to welcome Monte Mast in the role of Executive Director for 2019. After a thorough nation-wide search Mast was selected from almost 100 candidates interviewing for the position.


“Over the 71 year existence of The Cavaliers we have been most successful when we have enhanced our team with people who not only understand and honor the rich tradition and history of The Cavaliers but take us to a next level,” states Chris Hartowicz, Board President. “Everyone we talked to about Monte regarded him as a great partner, amazing friend, and inspiring leader. Monte brings with him an incredible portfolio of diverse experiences and talents that we will tap into as an organization so that we continue to build great leaders long into the future of The Cavaliers.”

Monte will be responsible for the vision and administration of the organization, with an emphasis on revenue development, donor relations, management, and the safety and well-being of our members and staff in all of our performing ensembles. Monte will officially join the team on July 1st, 2019 and will be transitioning into the organization with the help of a strategic hiring committee consisting of The Cavaliers Board of Directors, office staff, members of The Cavaliers Alumni Association, and key stakeholders in the organization. In preparation for July 1st, Monte will also be engaging with parents, vendors, strategic partners, and the Village of Rosemont to gain an understanding of all the working dynamics within the organization.

“I am truly honored to join the Cavalier family,” states Monte Mast, Executive Director. “I would like to thank the entire Cavaliers organization for entrusting me with this opportunity. The Cavaliers are one of the premiere drum corps and pageantry arts organizations in the world. I am humbled and honored to be able to lead such an iconic group.”

Having spent the previous 12 years as the Director of Fine Arts for the Klein Independent School District (Houston, Texas), in addition to 20 years as a band director at several different schools, Monte brings a wealth of marching arts, administration, and financial management experience to the Cavaliers team.  An alumnus of the Bluecoats, Phantom Regiment, and having more than 20 years of judging experience with Drum Corps International (DCI), Monte is prepared to help shape the future growth of the organization.

“While maintaining championship level competitive status and a reputation for innovation, I want to use my background in the education community to expand the GearWORKS programs so that The Cavaliers organization is viewed equally as an educational resource” states Monte Mast. “The Cavaliers have an incredible reputation for developing young people into confident and dynamic leaders and I look forward to helping The Cavaliers organization continue their mission to ensure the successful development of all who participate in our programs.”

About Monte Mast

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Prior to joining The Cavaliers, Monte Mast held the position of Director of Fine Arts for the Klein Independent School District in Klein, Texas for 12 years. A graduate of the University of Akron, he taught for one year in the Coventry Local School District before he was recruited to teach in Texas. He spent five years at Calallen Middle School before accepting the position of Assistant Band Director at Klein Oak High School. In the 13 ½ years he spent as the assistant or associate band director at Klein Oak, his bands were UIL Sweepstakes winners, two time Best-in-Class and three time runner-up festival winners, and three time UIL Area Marching Contest participants. He became the first Fine Arts Program Coordinator for Klein ISD in January 2006 and stepped into the role of the Director of Fine Arts after the retirement of his mentor, Bob Blanton, in July 2007.

As Klein ISD’s Director of Fine Arts, Monte oversaw the administration and personnel for the band, orchestra, choral, elementary music, theatre arts, dance, and visual art programs for the district’s 5 high schools, 10 intermediates, and 31 elementary campuses. He has been involved with bond planning, technology, curriculum, facilities design, professional development and GPA committees for the district. During his time as the Director of Fine Arts, he successfully added over 70 fine arts instructional positions, built an elementary art program where one did not exist, and increased fine arts stipends by over $400,000. He finished an instrument replacement plan for the district’s 2015 bond plan that included just under $5 million in funding with an additional $1 million for fine arts technology upgrades. During his tenure as Director of Fine Arts, ensembles from Klein ISD have been invited to perform at TMEA 12 times, the Midwest Clinic 7 times, the Music for All National Festival 8 times and Klein ISD was named a Best Community for Music by the NAMM Foundation 12 times.

Monte has given presentations on diverse topics including how to get a teaching job, standards based fine arts grading, instrument evaluation, student motivation, effective presentation techniques and marching band adjudication. Monte has been a member of and/or has made presentations to the Texas Music Educators Association, Texas Music Administrators Conference, Texas Bandmasters Association, Texas Art Educators Association, the Midwest Clinic, and the Conn-Selmer Music Administration Collaborative as well as multiple individual ISD’s. He conducted the annual fine arts stipend survey for the Texas Music Administrators Conference and did additional research on fine arts teacher certification trends in Texas. His peers in the Texas Music Administrators Conference named him as the 2018 Music Administrator of the Year.

Whether as a performer, staff member, designer or judge, Monte’s marching arts experiences have been important parts of shaping his career. His involvement in drum corps started in 1981 with the Bluecoats and was horn sergeant and soprano soloist in the 1982 season. When the Bluecoats went inactive in 1983, Monte joined the Phantom Regiment in 1984 where he finished second at DCI individuals on soprano bugle. Those experiences led him into becoming the primary visual designer for more than a dozen bands in Texas, Ohio, Missouri, and Kansas. After moving to Texas, he judged indoor guards for the Texas Color Guard Circuit for ten years including four championship panels.  He spent three years as a member of the Phantom Regiment brass instructional staff and was instructing the corps in 1996 when they won the Jim Ott High Brass Trophy and their first Drum Corps International title. Monte started judging for Drum Corps Midwest in 1998 and transitioned to Drum Corps International where he was an adjudicator in the activity for 20 years and judged on multiple championship panels. Between drum corps and marching band, he has judged contests in 40 states including state championships in 11, including multiple Texas UIL SMC and ISSMA Finals assignments. 

Monte recently celebrated his 21st anniversary with his wife Karen. They have two children; Garrett (string bass player and theatre techie) and Julianne (theatre offionado and oboist). In his limited spare time, Monte loves travelling and exploring ethnic cuisines, drinking the best coffee he can find, and is an avid oenophile (wine geek).

You can reach Monte Mast at


About The Cavaliers

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Founded in 1948 from Boy Scout Troop 111, The Cavaliers are one of the most successful drum and bugle corps in history, winning 20 national championships, including seven Drum Corps International world championships since 1992.

The Cavaliers provide a variety of educational and performance programs for young people, including GearWORKS, Cavaliers Indoor Percussion, Chromium Winds, Crystal Lake Thunder, and Midwest Connection. The organization delivers life-changing experiences that go beyond music and performing arts to build personal accountability, excellence, teamwork, and camaraderie.

The Cavaliers Drum & Bugle Corps is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization sponsored by The Village of Rosemont, Illinois.