Director: Matt Leff
This is Band Director Matt Leff's eighth year with the Rebel Regiment. Prior to his appointment at ECHS, Mr. Leff was the Band Director at South Effingham Middle School, and an assistant director with the SEHS Marching Mustangs since 2004. Bands under his direction have consistently earned superior ratings and the marching band has won numerous class, caption, and championship awards in competition.
Mr. Leff received his Bachelor of Science in Music Education at Toccoa Falls College in 2003. He earned his Master's Degree from the University of Georgia in 2009. He is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Georgia.
Mr. Leff is a member of the National Association for Music Education, the National Band Association, Georgia Music Educator's Association, and the Professional Association of Georgia Educators. A native of Toccoa, GA, Mr. Leff now lives in Clyo with his wife, Nycole, and their son and daughter, Andy and Charlie.
Assistant Director: Will Alford
This is Mr. Will Alford's ninth year on the band staff.
Mr. Alford is a graduate of Columbus State University. While at CSU, he was a member of the Jazz Band, Trombone Choir, multiple chamber ensembles and large group ensembles as well as a member of the CMENC, National Society for Collegiate Scholars, and Phi Mu Alpha Music Fraternity. Originally, from Warner Robins, Ga, Mr. Alford graduated from Houston County High School. While in high school, he participated in symphonic band, jazz band, marching band, and multiple honor bands. He is a trombone player.
Mr. Alford began his band directing career here at ECHS.
Assistant Director: Tony Murray
Mr. Murray attended school in Effingham County, where he marched in the Effingham County High School Rebel Regiment for 2 years, and in 1997 went to South Effingham High School and marched with the Marching Mustangs, graduating with honors at SEHS in 1998. He played saxophone in the Wind Ensemble and Jazz Band, marched sousaphone in the Rebel Regiment/Marching Mustangs, and also participated with the Basketball Pep Band.
Mr. Murray was sousaphone section leader and brass captain while in his high school marching band program and recipient of both the Louis Armstrong Jazz Award and John Philip Sousa Award.
He received his BA in Music Education from AASU in 2003, where he graduated Summa Cum Laude. He studied saxophone and composition/arranging with Dr. Randy Reese and also studied jazz theory and improvisation with Dr. Stephen Primatic. He received his Master's Degree in Music Education from the University of Georgia in 2010. He is currently working on his dissertation to finish the Doctor of Education degree from UGA.
While at AASU he participated in all musical ensembles including University Chorale, Chamber Choir, Percussion Ensemble, Jazz Ensemble, Wind Ensemble and Saxophone Quartet. He also participated in various jazz combos and was a saxophone soloist on many occasions with various faculty-led projects. He coordinated and led the AASU Basketball Pep Band.
Mr. Murray is a long-time member of the Savannah Jazz Orchestra. They function as Savannah’s premiere big band jazz orchestra and released a CD in 2001 titled "Satin Doll". In 2003 he performed on stage with the world famous group, The Temptations. Mr. Murray is presently in his 12th year as Director of Bands at Effingham County Middle School and Assistant Director to the ECHS Rebel Regiment Marching Band. In his spare time he enjoys fishing and camping on the rivers of South Georgia. Mr. Murray lives in south Guyton with his wife, Kenza, who currently serves as Director of Bands at Ebenezer Middle School, his extremely happy toddler, Colton, and easily excited dog, Maggie.
Assistant Director: Lindsay Sandberg
Assistant Director: Lisa McDonald
Mrs. Lisa McDonald is the Associate Director of Bands at Ebenezer Middle School in Rincon, Georgia. In addition to her duties at EMS, Mrs. McDonald serves as an Assistant Director with the Effingham County High School Rebel Regiment. A native of Effingham County, and an alumnus of Ebenezer Middle School and Effingham County High School, she is thrilled to be working at her alma maters. Prior to this appointment, Mrs. McDonald was the Associate Director of Bands at Riverwatch Middle School in Suwanee, Georgia.
Mrs. McDonald is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Kennesaw State University. While at KSU, she studied oboe with Elizabeth Koch-Tiscione, conducting with Dr. David Kehler, and was a student of Dr. John Culvahouse and Dr. Michael Alexander. During their 2013 fall season, Mrs. McDonald guest conducted the Kennesaw State University Concert Band. She was selected to present her research paper on Richard Wagner’s influence on Adolf Hitler at the 2014 Symposium of Student Scholars, and was selected to write program notes for the KSU Premiere Series concert featuring Robert Spano. Mrs. McDonald was very fortunate to complete her student teaching at Wheeler High School in Marietta, Georgia under the supervision of Mark Hoskins.
Mrs. McDonald’s professional affiliations include the Georgia Music Educator’s Association, the National Band Association, the National Association for Music Education, the International Double Reed Society, and the Professional Association of Georgia Educators.
Mrs. McDonald currently lives in Clyo, GA with her husband, Nathan, and their dog, River.
Assistant Director: John Pope