Dr. Mark Hugh Malone recently completed his twelfth year as Coordinator of Music Education and Professor of Music in The Winters School of Music at William Carey University in Hattiesburg, MS. Malone is a native of Miami, FL and holds the B.S. in Social Studies Education from The Florida State University, the B.A. in Humanities from Rollins College, as well as the Master of Music Education and the Ph.D. in Music Education from The Florida State University.
From 2006-201 0, Dr. Malone conducted The Chorale, the premiere performing organization in The Winters School of Music. The Chorale sang with The Mississippi Symphony, performed for the Mississippi Baptist Convention, made three concert tours throughout the southeast, and received an invitation to sing for the Z008 Governor's Awards for Excellence in the Arts during Dr. Malone’s sung tenure as conductor.
For 21 years, Dr. Malone served as Director of Choral Music at Pearl River Community College (PRCC), Poplarville, MS, where he conducted The Pearl River Singers (Concert Choir), RiverRoad (showchoir), and The Voices (select vocal ensemble), taught Voice, Music Literature, Music Appreciation, Music For Elementary Education Majors, and served as Music Director for the spring musicals. Under the direction of Dr. Malone, choirs from PRCC made three concert tours of England, Wales, Scotland, and France; have sung for state and regional convention s of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA); and have made concert appearances in New York City, Washington, D.C., Norfolk, VA, Atlanta, Nashville, New Orleans, Los Angeles, Seattle, aboard Carnival Cruise Lines, at Walt Disney World and Six Flags over Georgia. Prior teaching experience includes work at W. I. Thames Elementary School in Hattiesburg, MS, and Osceola High School in Kissimmee, FL.
Dr. Malone served as National Repertoire and Standards Chair for Two—Year College Choirs from 2000—2006 with the American Choral Directors Association. Articles by Dr. Malone have been published in the official magazine of ACDA, The Choral Journal, from 1990-2006. In addition, he was piano accompanist for the Mississippi ACDA All -State High School Honor Showchoir from its inception until 2005. In demand as a concert choir and showchoir adjudicator, Dr. Malone has judged choral ensemble s in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Mississippi and has served as choral clinician in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, and Mississippi.
Mississippi ACDA recognized Mark Malone with the Ernestine Ferrell Award for Excellence in Choral Music in 2008, and in 2013 he was recognized as one of the Top 20 Arts and Humanities Professors in Mississippi. Dr. Malone has recently been awarded a Research Fellowship Grant for work in the archives of the Rose Library at Emory University to complete a book entitled, William Levi Oavvson.' American Music Educator. As curriculum designer for the Mississippi Arts Commission’s Mississippi Blues Project, (201 2), Dr. Malone’s work has been featured at conferences in Hawaii, Tennessee, and Mississippi.
Connie Roberts is a Professor of Music at William Carey University, where she holds the Winters Endowed Chair in Music. She holds degrees from LSU and the University of Southern Mississippi. She has performed extensively across the southeast, appearing in operas, oratorios, and solo recitals. She has served as director/musical director of the LSU A Cappella Choir, Hattiesburg Civic Light Opera, Hattiesburg Civic Chorus, William Carey University Chorale, William Carey Women’s Chorus, William Carey Opera and Musical Theatre, Carey Dinner Theatre and Southern Opera and Musical Theatre. Connie is treasurer of the Southern Region of the National Association of Teachers of Singing. She serves on the Advisory Board of Carey Dinner Theatre and the Executive Board of the Hattiesburg Concert Association, and she is a charter member of the Meistersinger Community Chorus. She has been the choir director at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Hattiesburg since 1988. Connie is proud and thankful that Westminster Presbyterian Church is the home of the Meistersingers and hosts many concerts and recitals in its sanctuary.
VP for Membership
Until recently, a lifelong resident of Hattiesburg, Kim Kimbrough Howell has been a member of HCCCA and The Meistersingers since its second year. She is a 1974 graduate of Hattiesburg High School, and has degrees from The University of Southern Mississippi and Mississippi University for Women. In high school she was a member of the honor chorus called The Meistersingers, for which the current group is named. Recently retired after a 33 year career as a Family Nurse Practitioner, she and her husband, Kinny Howell, moved to Moss Point. They are the parents of Stephen Medley, and Amanda and Jennifer Howell and have two grandchildren, Simon Sims and Tristan Johnson
VP for Development
Robin Roberts has been an attorney in Hattiesburg since 1987. Now as managing partner with Roberts and Associates, he serves as a legal adviser to a number of non-profit organizations. He set up HCA as a non-profit in 1996, and was a founding member. He has remained involved with The Meistersingers through the years. Robin is also an avid choral singer. He has enjoyed singing with the group and helping raise money to sustain the music we offer to the Pine Belt.
Althea Jerome is a founding chorus member of Meistersingers. Joining a community choir was a natural step for her, because she has sung since she was a toddler, and she has spent a career teaching music and singing in church choir, musical theatre settings and choral ensembles. She holds the Master of Music Education Degree from the University of Southern Mississippi. During her music education career she taught music in public schools and music education courses and voice at the university level. In addition, she has served in leadership positions in music and arts education organizations at the local, state and national levels.
Carolyn McLarnan, originally from Scotland has a degree in Textile Technology and moved from London to Iowa when she married her husband Pediatric Neurologist Keith McLarnan (now retired). They have lived in Hattiesburg since 1991 and like many with a science background has a lifelong love of music and singing all through school and college. She currently sings in her church choir and is a founding chorus member of Meistersingers and is also on the Executive Board of HCA.
Cherie Boone lives in Laurel and serves as Choral Librarian. She received her B.S., M.Ed., and post graduate hours in education, and a minor in music education from Mississippi State University and has served as church choir director and music educator in the Laurel School District. She has also served in many capacities for the Laurel Little Theatre. Cherie has been a member of Meistersingers for four years and has been chair of the annual Poinsettia Sale and the Valentine’s Silent Auction.
Member at-large, Communications
Kristin McNair is a graduate of The University of Southern Mississippi. She was a leadership scholar and received a voice scholarship where she studied some Music Education and graduated with a B.S. in Child and Family Studies. Kristin started her career working with an adolescent health grant in South Mississippi advocating for comprehensive Sex Education in Public Schools. She has also been trained with DONA international as a birth doula , and is an advocate to both inform and empower women towards more natural birth choices. Kristin and her husband of 7 years have a 2 year old daughter. Kristin has been a part of Meistersingers since 2016 and is the co chair for communication in which she manages both the website and social media platforms.
Jean Claire Monroe Bounds
Member at-large, Communications
Jean Claire Bounds is a graduate of The University of Southern Mississippi where she received degrees in both Music Education and Mass Communications. She went on to receive her Master's in Theological Studies from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. An accomplished Christian speaker and writer, Jean Claire has taught groups of thousands how to study the Bible and excel in women's ministry initiatives. She enjoys traveling, reading, and advocating for Alzheimer's disease and other dementias. She lives in Newton, MS with her husband, Judson, and son, Liam.
Artistic Director, Joseph Wilkinson is the Director of Worship, Music, and Communications at Crossgates United Methodist Church in Brandon, Mississippi. He holds a bachelor of music degree in vocal performance from the University of Mississippi and a master of church music from Southern Seminary, with a major in vocal performance and advanced studies in choral conducting. He did post- graduate studies in music at Oxford University and Cambridge University in England, and Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Wilkinson has studied conducting with Jerry Jordan, John Dickson, Stephen Cleobury, and Craig Jessop.
In addition to his musicianship as a conductor, Wilkinson is an accomplished bass-baritone soloist and vocalist. To his credits are being a district winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Auditions, and a top ten finalist in the Orpheus National Vocal Competition. He has performed with the Des Moines Metropolitan Opera, Kentucky Opera, the Oxford Symphony Orchestra (Oxford, England), the Louisville Orchestra, the Chattanooga Symphony, and the Mississippi Symphony. Wilkinson was the bass vocalist for the professional performing and recording twelve-member chamber choir, Coro Favoriti, of Louisville, Kentucky.