Alumni Spotlight: Travis Bender, BS’06, MA’08

Congratulations to Dr. Travis Bender on his recent election to the office of President of the Alabama Music Educators’ Association!

Dr. Bender completed his Bachelor of Science in Music Education in 2006, and his Master of Arts in Music Education in 2008.  He is currently the fine arts department chair and Associate Director of Bands at Oak Mountain High School. While attending UA, he served as a drum major of the “Million Dollar Band” and as conductor of the Tuscaloosa Winds, a community band for the western Alabama region. In addition to his conducting capacities, Dr. Bender also performed extensively as the pianist for the Alabama Wind Ensemble for six years and as a trombonist for the symphonic band and various pep bands.

Under his leadership, Dr. Bender’s bands have consistently received superior ratings at contests and festivals. His bands were invited to perform at the Alabama Music Educators Association Conference in 2012 and 2019. He has also conducted ensembles at the CBDNA Southern Conference (2014), Carnegie Hall (2015), and the Music for All National Band Festival (2016). Dr. Bender’s bands have received first place awards at the Dixie Classic Grand National Adjudicators Festival (2013), the Smoky Mountain Music Festival (2019), and Festival Disney (2012 and 2017). He has coordinated the Oak Mountain “Spirit of Cahaba” Marching Band performances in the National Cherry Blossom Parade (2018) as well as parades at Walt Disney World’s Epcot (2017) and Magic Kingdom (2020). Dr. Bender has presented sessions at the 2014 and 2016 AMEA Conference, the 2018 MSERA Conference, and the 2021 ABA Summer Conference.

Roll tide to Dr. Travis Bender for continuing a legacy of excellence in music education.