2019-2020 Southeast District Council
James Washburn III - President
James Washburn III is a Spring 2016 initiate to The Mighty Iota Zeta Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi, National Honorary Band Fraternity Inc. He is Business Supply Chain Management student at The Illustrious North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University. His love for his chapter and the organization pushes him to do nothing less than strive for the highest. After undergrad, he plans get his master’s in healthcare management, and aspirations is to change and improve the manner in which healthcare is administered to all classes of people, as well as open a Performing Arts Center to in an effort to preserve the arts in lower economic areas. He has marched in the Blue & Gold Marching Machine for four years, where he was drum major for the 2018-2019 season, while serving as the Iota Zeta chapter president for two consecutive years. James has also served as the president of the Council of Presidents, which is the governing body for all student ran organizations on campus, the 2018-2019 semester while at North Carolina A&T.
Brianna McKinzie - Vice President of Membership
Brianna Nicole McKinzie is a Fall 2016 Brother of the Alpha Eta Chapter at the University of Florida. Brianna is currently a third year Women’s Studies major, with minors in Mathematics and Secondary Mathematics Education. She has a passion for equality and serving people and plans to become a high school Mathematics teacher in a low-income area where she can encourage and give students opportunities they may not have had otherwise. Brianna is a clarinet player in the Gator Band and this past year served as Clarinet Section Leader. Outside of Gator Band, Brianna has played in the University’s Symphonic and Concert Bands on bass clarinet and percussion. Brianna served as the Southeast District Vice President of Membership for 2017-2018 and Southeast District President for 2018-2019. Outside of band, Brianna has served the organization FAB (Florida Alternative Breaks) by becoming a site leader and attending the LGBTQ Affairs trip. She hopes to grow connections across the Southeast District and encourage chapters to learn about how other chapters operate and function.
Jessica Needham - Vice President of Programs
Jessica Needham is a Spring 2017 initiate of the Eta Sigma chapter at the University of Central Florida (UCF). She is a senior double major studying Biology and Interdisciplinary Studies, with focuses in the Arts and Behavioral Social Sciences. Additionally, she is pursuing a minor in Leadership Studies. Jessica first picked up flute in fifth grade, and once she enrolled at UCF, she knew college band was not only an option; it was a must! Throughout her college career, Jessica’s involvement in bands has fostered her school spirit and pride. She has been an enthusiastic member of the UCF Marching Knights for five seasons and plans to return for a sixth season. She has also served as the piccolo section leader for the past four years. Additionally, she participates in UCF’s concert ensembles each semester. This school year, she is serving on Eta Sigma’s Executive Board as the Treasurer. Outside of the music world, Jessica enjoys all things outdoors and conducts marine biology research at UCF. In her free time, she spends time with her cats and loves to cheer on the Knights!
Atia Aroonsakulwongse - Secretary/Treasurer
Atia Aroonsakulwongse is a Fall 2016 brother from the Theta Theta Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) in Birmingham, AL. She is currently in her third year studying Public Health with a concentration Global Health Studies in the Pre-Physician Assistants track. Atia has a passion of serving people in low-income areas in the health care field. She aspires to be a physicians’ assistant in low income areas to bring healthcare for those who cannot afford it. Atia is a piccolo player in the Marching Blazers at UAB and she has been a part of the UAB Wind Symphony and Symphony playing flute and piccolo since starting at UAB in the Fall of 2016. In Kappa Kappa Psi, Atia served being the recording secretary and now is the current president (at this time) of Theta Theta. Outside of band, Atia is a part of the Public Health Student Organization participating in a team to create public health interventions within the campus of UAB. Atia hopes to grow connections within the Southeast District of Kappa Kappa Psi and help chapters to get to know one another.
Dr. Craig Aarhus - Governor
Dr. Craig Aarhus is Associate Director of Bands and Associate Professor of Music at Mississippi State University. At MSU, he co-directs the Famous Maroon Band and basketball pep bands, conducts the Concert/Community Band and Campus Band, and teaches Conducting and Brass Techniques in the Department of Music. As a member of the band faculty, Dr. Aarhus has been part of a team that has helped lead the band program to unprecedented growth, making it currently one of the largest bands in the Southeast. A native of Alabama, Dr. Aarhus received his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Auburn University and his Master of Arts and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in Conducting from The University of Iowa. While at Iowa, he was the recipient of the prestigious Iowa Performance Fellowship and was a conducting student of Dr. Myron Welch. He also served as a graduate conductor for all of the concert bands, arranged music and wrote drill for the Hawkeye Marching Band, and was co-director of the Iowa Pep Band. During this time, he was also the director of the Southeast Iowa Concert Band at Iowa Wesleyan College for one year. Prior to his appointment at MSU, Dr. Aarhus was a successful high school and middle band director in the public schools of Lanett, Tallassee, and Mobile, Alabama. Dr. Aarhus is a member of several professional organizations including the College Band Directors National Association, Pi Kappa Lambda, Phi Mu Alpha, Tau Beta Sigma and the Mississippi Bandmasters Association. He is currently serving as a Governor for the Southeast District of Kappa Kappa Psi and was recently elected to the Board of Directors of the National Band Association as the College/University Representative. In December of 2015, he was elected to the executive board of the Delta Chapter of Phi Beta Mu Bandmasters Fraternity. Dr. Aarhus has been an adjudicator and clinician throughout the Southeast, Midwest, and in Canada, and is a contributing author to five volumes of the popular Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series. In 2015, Dr. Aarhus received the Clyde Muse Service Award from the MSU College of Education and was a member of the George Duke Humphrey Faculty Leadership Program. In 2010 and 2011, he was a recipient of the “StatePride” Award from for excellence in teaching, research, and service. He has been a clinician/instructor at the Smith-Walbridge Drum Major Clinics for 18 years, and in that capacity has had the opportunity to teach hundreds of high school and college drum majors from across the country. He and his family reside in Starkville and are members of First Presbyterian Church, where he serves as Music Director.
Latrondrick Hunter - Governor
A native of South Carolina, Latrondrick received his Bachelor of Arts degree from South Carolina State University. While in undergrad he was not only able to grow in musicianship on his primary instrument, the trombone, he was able to participate in the many instrumental ensembles. They include the University Wind Ensemble, the University Symphonic Band, and the University Pep Band. In addition to growing in musicianship, he also grew leadership. He served the SCSU band program as a drum major for 3 years, but also worked as South Carolina State University Band Staff as a student assistant.
During his tenure at SCSU, Latrondrick joined the Kappa Kappa Psi National Honorary Band Fraternity, Inc in the spring of 2010. Shortly after initiation Latrondrick accepted the position as Zeta Eta Chapter President. During his leadership service he reinstated the SCSU Honor Band Clinic, Chaired the 2011 Southeast District Leadership Conference and was awarded the 2012 J. Lee Burke Student Achievement Award.
After receiving his Instrumental Bachelor of Arts degree, Latrondrick began graduate work at Alabama A&M University in pursuit of a Master’s of Science Degree in Educational Leadership. There he operated as the Drill/Show Coordinator. His duties included creating field designs and producing and arranging halftime show concepts.
Today, Latrondrick is a passionate multi-unit leader at the Dollar General Corporation with progressive retail management experience with special emphasis in operational management, sales methods and procedures, loss prevention, internal controls and overall results. He is deeply involved in the development of his team and seeing them achieve their goals. He enjoys engaging with his store leaders around their contribution to controlling loss and driving sales. Keeping his team engaged and empowering them to do their best is one of the most satisfying part of his job.
Latrondrick is an Active member of the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association, Southeast District Alumni Association, Conn-Selmer Institute (Alumni), International Trombone Association and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. He and his family (Crystal- wife; former TBS SED counselor and Calia- daughter) reside in Huntsville, AL.
Arupa Gopal - Governor
Arupa Gopal serves as Executive Administrative Specialist to the Dean at the University of South Florida College of The Arts. She was initiated into the Kappa Tau Chapter in April of 2004 and while active served as Chapter President and Vice President of Membership. She participated in the Symphony Band, Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Opera Orchestra, and was Drum Major of the Herd of Thunder Marching Band. She also served as Administrative Coordinator for Festival of Winds. During this time she gave two recitals, performed in various intercollegiate bands, and was a Finalist in the USF Concerto Competition. In 2007 she graduated from USF with a Dual Major in Music and Management and continued her education at New York University where she attained a Master of Arts in Performing Arts Administration in 2009. While in New York she worked for the Brooklyn Philharmonic, Distinguished Concerts International New York, and On Stage at Kingsborough. Currently she lives in Tampa and serves as Co-Chair of the USF Music Alumni Society, President of the NYU Alumni Club of West Florida, is a member of the Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Association, and is on the board of the KKPsi Tampa Bay Local Alumni Association. She is a Life Member of the fraternity and serves as a Governor of the Southeast District.