Thomas Keck comes to SMU Meadows School of the Arts from Utah Valley University, where he served as Chair of the Department of Music and Director of Bands. As Chair, Keck oversaw ten degree programs, nearly 300 music majors, and 75 faculty-staff colleagues in a NASM accredited, all-Steinway School. Keck raised the department’s completion rate to exceed the university’s benchmark for 2025 by 2021. Keck assembled a diverse faculty with 71% of the full-time hires during his leadership coming from under-represented populations. In addition to his terminal degree in conducting, Keck holds a master’s degree in higher education administration with a cognate in fundraising leadership and has credentials in diversity, equity, and inclusion as well as anti-racist pedagogy.
As a conductor, Keck received acclaim for his 2018-19 season programming, inclUTion, which exclusively featured under-represented composers, performers, and conductors. Keck has participated in numerous commissions of new works for wind band from prominent and aspiring composers, and is published in repertoire, rehearsal techniques, and marching band textbooks. Keck has twenty-two years of teaching experience at the universities of Miami, Georgia, New Hampshire, and Ball State. Keck has twice received the National Band Association Citation of Excellence and was included in the 20th annual SBO Magazine 50 Directors Who Make a Difference. Keck has conducted at regional conferences of the CBDNA and NAfME and presented clinics for several state music conferences. He has appeared with university and high school ensembles throughout the United States, Bahamas, Bermuda, Haiti, Mexico, Canada, Europe, and China.