John Climer

John Climer

John Climer

Associated Faculty, Wind Conducting

Areas of Expertise

  • Instrumental Conducting (wind band)
  • Conducting Pedagogy


  • DMA, Conducting, University of Missouri–Kansas City
  • MM, Conducting, University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music
  • BM, Music Education, University of Akron

After a two-week retirement, John Climer recently completed an interim year as director of wind ensembles at Capital University. From 2008–2022, he served as director of bands and professor of music at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee’s Peck School of the Arts. At UW–Milwaukee, Climer oversaw all aspects of the band program, guided the graduate wind conducting area, and served as conductor of the Wind Ensemble, the University’s premiere wind band. Before his appointment in Milwaukee, he served as director of bands at Ohio University, the University of North Dakota and Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.

As a guest conductor and clinician, Dr. Climer has led performances at festivals, universities and concert venues nationally and internationally including the Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Eastman School of Music, and the Conservatorio di Musica G. Martucci (Salerno, Italy). Ensembles under his direction have performed for four conferences of the College Band Directors National Association (CBDNA), including the 2013 National Conference (Greensboro, North Carolina), five performances for the Ohio Music Education Association's State Professional Conference, the North Dakota Music Educators Association, the Wisconsin State Music Conference, and the Society of Composers Inc. In July 2015, the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Wind Ensemble performed for the 16th International Conference of the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (WASBE) in San Jose, California.

John is the recipient of the Ohio University College of Fine Arts Outstanding Teacher Award, the Ohio University School of Music Distinguished Teaching Award, the Outstanding Music Educator Alumni Award from the University of Akron, and he was recently named the 2021 Phi Beta Mu Wisconsin Bandmaster of the Year. He is a past president of the North Central Division of the College Band Directors National Association and a former Editor of the CBDNA Report. He is a contributing author for the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series; his professional memberships include Phi Kappa Phi, Pi Kappa Lambda, Kappa Kappa Psi, Phi Beta Mu, the College Band Directors National Association, and the National Association for Music Education. His biography is published in the third edition of Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers and he is an elected member of the American Bandmasters Association.

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