Mark Hugh Malone
Florida native Dr. Mark Hugh Malone is a veteran music educator with over 46 years of classroom experience in a variety of settings with students of all ages who has been a frequent presenter at the National Association for Music Education National Convention, MS Music Educators State Convention, Louisiana Music Educators Association, Mississippi Whole Schools Initiative Summer and Winter Institutes, choral clinics for students and conductors, as well as organizer of professional development workshops for teachers. Dr. Malone has experience in elementary and high school music programs, was choral director at Pearl River Community College (MS), Coordinator of Music Education at William Carey University (MS), and was Visiting Professor of Music Education at The University of Southern Mississippi.
As curriculum designer for the Mississippi Arts Commission, Malone has completed three arts-integration curricula: The Mississippi Blues Trail and Beyond, (2012), MS History Through the Arts: A Bicentennial Journey (2017), and Footprints in the Dust: The Natchez Trace (2019). All three can be accessed at www.arts.ms.gov. Dr. Malone has also written arts-integration curricula for the City of Laurel (2017), MS, Mississippi Cultural Crossroads (2020), and for the Catholic Diocese of Jackson (2020).
An expert in Sight-Reading, Dr. Malone has written sight-singing materials for several states, presented workshops for students, and offered pedagogical insights through professional development for teachers. Malone serves as liaison with Festival Music Press to promote exercises for adjudicated assessment of music performance for Mississippi Middle Schools and High Schools.
As a member of the Advisory Committee for adoption of the National Standards for Music Education in the State of Mississippi, head of the committee to develop a guide to the National Standards for instrumental directors, a frequent presenter of Professional Development Workshops explaining the Standards, and an evaluator of Whole Schools Arts Integration programs, Dr. Malone has extensive experience in the understanding and use of the current music standards in use in the United States.
Mark Malone’s manuscript, William Levi Dawson: American Music Educator-The Path of Persistence is currently being considered for publication.
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.