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Meet the Conductor of the USAF Heritage of America Band

Posted by Gabrielle Zumpano on 6 November 2018 | 0 Comments

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Major Michael D. Hoerber is Commander and Conductor of the United States Air Force Heritage of America Band, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia and Commander of the United States Air Force Heartland of America Band, Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. The Major is responsible for equipping, training and deploying this 76-member squadron at two locations in 13 different musical configurations. He aids in overseeing more than 350 annual musical presentations and multimedia productions by squadron ensembles, and conducts the Concert Band. Offered throughout a sixteen-state, 400,000 square-mile region, these presentations focus on the bravery and sacrifice of expeditionary Airmen serving around the globe on behalf of Air Combat Command and the U.S. Air Force.

Major Michael D. Hoerber joined the United States Air Force in July 2006. Upon graduation as a Distinguished Graduate from Officer Training School at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama, Major Hoerber was assigned as deputy commander/assistant conductor of the Heartland of America Band at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha, Nebraska. He returned to Maxwell AFB in January of 2007 to attend the USAF Air and Space Basic Course. While there, his flight was honored as the Top Flight out of 48 flights and was also presented with the Col. (ret.) "Bud" Day Bone-Crusher Award for most athletic flight. In the spring of 2011, Major Hoerber deployed to Southwest Asia as the Officer in Charge of the U.S. Air Forces Central Band for six months from March to August.

Prior to joining the Air Force, Major Hoerber served three years as Music Director of the North Valley Chamber Orchestra at Paradise Valley Community College and four years as Director of Bands at Paradise Valley High School in Phoenix, Arizona. Additionally, he was the Assistant Conductor for the Tempe Symphony Orchestra from 2000-2006.

Major Hoerber completed his education at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. As an undergraduate student, he studied clarinet with Dr. Robert Spring, graduating Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education-Instrumental Music in 1998. Upon graduation, the School of Music presented him with the "Most Outstanding Undergraduate in Music Education Award." Major Hoerber accepted a graduate teaching assistantship with the university's orchestra program and returned to Arizona State to pursue graduate work that fall. As a graduate student, Major Hoerber studied conducting with Dr. Timothy Russell, Dr. William Reber, Dr. Richard Strange and Prof. Gary Hill. He had the privilege of conducting several graduate student recitals, faculty recitals, many orchestra concerts, and two performances of Puccini's "Gianni Schicchi" with the School of Music's Lyric Opera Theater. He graduated with a Master of Music degree in Music Education with a concentration in Instrumental Conducting in May 2000.

In October 2007, Major Hoerber was selected to attend the First Annual Frederick Fennell Memorial Conducting Masterclass at the Eastman School of Music. While there he was privileged to observe and work with master wind conductors Donald Hunsberger, Frank Battisti, Michael Votta and Mark Scatterday.

Major Hoerber has taught at all levels of education from elementary through high school, and college. His high school band program consistently received "superior" ratings at festivals for marching, jazz, and concert bands. His groups have toured Europe, Canada, and various states across the Southwest. In March 2005, his jazz and concert bands performed at Lincoln Center in New York City. At the conclusion of his teaching career, Major Hoerber was nationally recognized by the Nobel Foundation as an Outstanding High School Educator.

EDUCATION:
1998 Bachelor of Music Education - Instrumental Music, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ.
2000 Master of Music Education - concentration in Instrumental Conducting, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ.
2006 Distinguished Graduate, Officer Training School, Maxwell Air Force Base, AL.
2007 Air and Space Basic Course, Maxwell Air Force Base, AL.
2011 Squadron Officer School - by correspondence
2012 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, AL.
2013 Public Affairs Qualification Course, Defense Information School, Ft. George G. Meade, MD.

ASSIGNMENTS:
1. October 2006 - July 2009, Deputy Commander, The USAF Heartland of America Band, Offutt AFB, Neb.
2. July 2009 - October 2011, Commander, The USAF Heartland of America Band, Offutt AFB, Neb.
3. March 2011 - August 2011, Officer in Charge, U.S. Air Forces Central Command Band, Southwest Asia
4. October 2011 - August 2013, Commander, The USAF Band of the West, Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, TX.
5. October 2013 - present, Commander/Conductor, USAF Heritage of America Band, Joint Base Langley-Eusits, VA and Commander, USAF Heartland of America Band, Offutt Air Force Base, NE.


MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS:
Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award
National Defense Service Medal
Global War or Terrorism Expeditionary Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with Gold Border

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS:
ASBC Class 07B Top Flight Member
Col (Ret.) "Bud" Day Bone-Crusher Award (Most Athletic Flight) Member
ACC Public Affairs Company Grade Officer of the Quarter, 1 April - 30 June 2007
ACC Public Affairs Company Grade Officer of the Quarter, 1 July - 30 September 2009
2009 ACC PA Communication Excellence Outstanding Band Company Grade Officer
2009 ACC Public Affairs Company Grade Officer of the Year

EFFECTIVE DATES OF PROMOTION:
Second Lieutenant 29 Sep 2006
First Lieutenant 29 Sep 2008
Captain 29 Sep 2010
Major 1 Nov 2016