Mrs. Karen Alward is a native of Paducah, Kentucky and graduated from Livingston Central high School. After high school, she earned her Bachelors and Masters of Music Education from Murray State University and her Rank I in Educational Leadership from Western Kentucky University.
Karen began her teaching career at Muhlenburg North Middle School, where she assisted with the high school program. Over the years, she taught band at Paducah Tilghman High School, Ohio County Middle and High School, and Burns Middle School. Early in her career, she and a colleague started an Independent A WGI finalist guard, Polaris, which included members from several area high schools. Karen is a member of Phi Beta Mu, International Bandmaster’s Fraternity and a former district officer for Kentucky Music Education Association’s 2nd District. She is also a member and past president of Sigma Alpha Iota International Fraternity for women in music.
After spending two years as Assistant Band Director, Karen is ecstatic to be the new Director of Bands for Daviess County High School, where she hopes to enrich the musical experiences of her students.
Karen is married to Chad Alward, who is the Executive Officer of the 100th Army Band at Ft. Knox, Kentucky. They have three children; Ian, who is a percussionist majoring in music education at Middle Tennessee State University; Kate, who is in the color guard and plays clarinet and bassoon; Cora, who is in the color guard and plays flute and bassoon.
Nate is a new assistant band and orchestra director for Daviess County High School. Nate graduated from Murray State University in 2012 with a Bachelors in Music Education. Nate currently is working on his Master’s Degree – Conducting-Teacher Leadership at Western Kentucky University. Nate has worked as an assistant conductor at Western Kentucky University since 2016 and from 2012-2016 was the band and choir director at Webster County High School. His performing experience includes WKU Wind Ensemble (Conductor, Bass Trombone), WKU Symphonic Band (Conductor, 1st Trombone), and multiple performances at MSU (Trombone, Bass Guitar).
Josh Stone began his time with the Band of Pride in 1999 as a student and was part of the state championship band in 2001. Since that time he has developed his passion for teaching students. Josh has been the percussion caption head for the BOP since 2011. Josh also developed the DCPS Indoor Percussion Ensemble in 2016 and led the students to win the SCGC championship in their inaugural year. Josh has worked with college percussion ensembles and has had multiple groups from both scholastic and independent circuits compete in WGI finals. Along with teaching percussion, Josh also has a bachelor's degree in middle-grades education and teaches 7th grade writing at Daviess Co. Middle School. He has a small private lesson studio where he gives private guitar, percussion, and piano lessons.
Gabrielle Vita is the colorguard director for Daviess County High School. She has always had a passion for the performing and marching arts. At an early age Gabrielle started studying piano, ballet, irish step dancing, and vocal performance. She started her colorguard career in seventh grade competing with her local winterguard. In 2007, she started competing with Teal Sound Drum and Bugle Corps receiving a DCI Division II Bronze Medal. In 2008, she competed with Jersey Surf Drum and Bugle Corps receiving a DCI Open Class Bronze Medal. In 2009, Gabrielle was selected as a member of the Army All American Marching Band. After graduating high school, Gabrielle attended Virginia Commonwealth University earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Biology. During this time, she became a 2011 WGI World Class Finalist as a member of Black Watch Winterguard. Gabrielle finished her colorguard career as a performer winning the 2011 DCI World Championship with The Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps based out of Allentown, PA.
After achieving her dream of winning a world championship, Gabrielle turned her sites to teaching others. As the daughter of a colorguard instructor and band director, she knew the importance of education. Gabrielle started her teaching career at Deep Run High School leading her first colorguard to an undefeated season. Her success caught the attention of Powhatan High School, a WGI Regional Finalist and Bands of America competitor. During this time she also began working with Apollo and Daviess County High School. Gabrielle has been a designer and choreographer for Daviess County since December 2013. Her love of the kids and the Daviess County Band of Pride organization drove her to move to Kentucky in 2017 and to accept a position as the colorguard director. She has also accepted a position as an analyst at Moss McGraw Environmental Laboratories in Henderson, KY.