Rick Maass was considered to be one of the best marching and maneuvering instructors in the Midwest, where he was involved with many of the top junior corps of the day. He had a different vision of marching routines than other instructors of the time, and was valued for his teaching ability. He received widespread recognition and admiration for designing and teaching the Requiem drill, a dramatic representation of the American Civil War, for Baltimore Yankee Rebels senior corps. The outstanding concept and show resulted in the Yankee Rebels winning three American Legion national championships. His drum and bugle corps activities began in 1939, playing bugle, then snare drum, for the Washington D. Smyser School corps. He joined the Norwood Park Cadets, a feeder corps for the Imperials, in 1941. While with the Norwood Park Imperials, he played snare drum, then baritone horn, and also taught the drum line of the Portage Park Moose corps. He arranged music, taught the horn line, designed and taught the drill of Evanston Lancers when the corps won the Elks national championship. In 1953, he returned to the Imperials, marching as drum major then serving as music director, brass instructor and arranger, marching and maneuvering instructor, drill designer and interim corps manager. He was a judge with the All American Association, was one of the seven founders of the Midwest Color Guard Circuit, Central States Judges Association and was chief judge for Drum Corps International (DCI).