Area 3 Site Information


February 9th, 2019 

Jefferson High School
1801 S 18th St
Lafayette, IN 47905


Site Coordinators

Elementary School Coordinator
Randy Leazenby

Middle School Coordinators
Jordan Buck
Jennie Swick



Elementary School Clinician
Dr. Joani Brandon
Dr. Joani Somppi Brandon serves as a professor of music, teaching music education general/choral methods and Women’s Chorus. Joani is the former director of the Anderson Area Children’s Choir Chorale (1999-2011). The nine years prior, Joani taught music at Clay Middle School in Carmel, Indiana. She previously served as a middle school choral director for three years in Wilmington, Ohio where she received the Sallie Mae First Year Teacher of the Year award and was in top ten first-year teachers in the state of Ohio.

Joani completed her bachelor of arts degree in music education and piano performance, with honors in music and education, from Anderson University in 1987. In 1995, she completed her master’s of music education from Butler University where she studied conducting and children’s choir methods with Henry Leck, director emeritus of the Indianapolis Children’s Choir. Joani has also studied conducting with at the Choral Music Institute with Doreen Rao and Barbara Tagg. Joani has Kodaly Certification from the Hartt School, University of Hartford (Connecticut), Orff Schulwerk Certification, and Dalcroze training from Anderson University, where she also serves as the program director for the Orff Schulwerk, Feierabend, and Dalcroze summer courses.

Elementary School Accompanist
Paula Watkins

Middle School Clinician

Ben Waltz
Mr. Waltz is in his tenth year of teaching with experience at both the junior and senior high school levels.  Originally from Ohio, Mr. Waltz completed his BM Music Education at Anderson University and completed his MA in Music Education at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN.  In addition to singing, Mr. Waltz grew up playing piano, trumpet, and French Horn; and he was active in musical theater programs at school and in the community. 
Choirs under Mr. Waltz’s direction have found many different forms of success.  He has directed groups that traveled to New York, Washington, DC, and most recently to Beijing and Shanghai.  In 2012, Mr. Waltz’s 7thand 8th grade choir was invited to perform for the Indiana Music Educator’s state conference.  Mr. Waltz has presented at conferences on topics such as rehearsal techniques and repertoire and in 2016, Mr. Waltz was selected to conduct the Indiana Junior High Honor Choir in Ft. Wayne.
In his spare time, Mr. Waltz enjoys running (has completed two marathons), cooking, and spending time with the cutest dog in the world:  Griffin.

Middle School Accompanist
Crystal Bazan