Two President’s Choice inductees have made major contributions apart from marching with an individual drum and bugle corps

Posted on July 22nd, 2021

Bill Ives and John Kreitzer, who have each made major contributions to drum and bugle corps activity outside of membership in an individual corps are the President’s Choice award winners for 2021.  They will be inducted into the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame during a ceremony in Valley Forge Casino Resort in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania on Saturday, November 20.

Bill Ives has amassed thousands of items and hundreds of vintage uniforms in his efforts to preserve the history of drum and bugle corps activity.  John Kreitzer has been judging marching bands and drum and bugle corps for more than 40 years.

Inducted into the Hall of Fame as an Associate Member in 2018, Bill Ives has been a key figure in the movement to preserve the history of drum and bugle corps activity.  He has amassed a staggering 24,000 items: memorabilia, souvenirs, programs, newspaper and magazine articles, corps buttons and badges and more than 350 vintage uniforms.  These items are stored and available for viewing by appointment only at the Archer-Epler Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 979 in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania.

For the past 20 years he has displayed many of these items regularly at drum corps events in the United States and Canada.  He has also created a detailed computerized listing of drum corps in the USA and Canada.

Earlier this year, his campaign to collect items for a proposed Marching Pageantry Arts Museum was the subject of a feature story in the Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper.  The Inquirer is the country’s third oldest continually operating daily newspaper, founded in 1829.

He has served in various committee and management positions with groups including Jersey Surf and Archer-Epler Musketeers.  He has marched in various color guard positions and played bass drum with the Musketeers.  He was named Musketeer of the Year in 1982; received the Spirit of the Musketeer award in 1996; was named Drum Corps International (DCI) volunteer of the year in 2011.  He is a member of the Pennsylvania Drum Corps Hall of Fame.

John Kreitzer has been involved with drum and bugle corps and marching bands for more than 40 years.  Following his time as a brass performer, he began instructing many drum corps and high school bands.  He still plays tuba with large groups and smaller ensembles in central and southern Delaware.

He began judging in 1978 with the Mid Atlantic Judges Association, then the National Judges Association.  He began judging with Drum Corps Associates (DCA) in 1985, serving as DCA Judging Coordinator since his appointment to the position in 2008, just prior to DCA directors considering a new judging system at the 2009 Rules Congress.  

Under his direction, the judging administration worked with corps representatives to develop this new system that focusses on the audience.  Communicating and engaging with the audience was a new idea that required enhanced professional development for the judges so they could meet requirements different from other judging systems.  DCA program designers had to realize the judging response could be more emotional and less analytical. 

As the drum corps world has adapted to performing in pandemic times, he has provided extensive guidance to DCA member corps this year on how make the best use of cameras in covering field shows during virtual competition. 

During his time with DCA, he has judged each visual caption on many prelim and final championship tournament weekends.  He has also judged championship events with organizations including Cavalcade of Bands, Cavalcade Indoor, Keystone Indoor, Festivals of Music and Homestead Festivals.

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