Lambda Chapter | Missouri, USA

  • Founded: January 8, 1959 in Jefferson City, Missouri. PBM National President Milburn Carey presided at initial meeting.
    •  Membership fee: $10 [dinner and dues] 
    • June 1959: Treasury had balance of $67
  • First officers: Charles Emmons, President; Tom Birch, Vice President; Jon Ferguson, Sec/Treas
    Board Members: H. Orville Johnson; Howard Bell
    Other charter members: James Adair; Lowell E. Brunner; Keith Collins; J.M. Dillinger; C. Herbert Duncan; Frank Fendorf; James O. Fettern; Harold Hillyer; Keith House; O.O. Humo; Don Verne Joseph; Joe Labuta; Ben E. Markley; LeRoy F. Mason; Gerald L. McCollum; Leland Mueller; Wilby A. Rice; Gerald Sandbothe; R. Kenneth Seward; Lee T. Schneider; Bill Tetley; John Willer
  • Past Secretary/Treasurers: Jon Ferguson; Ken Seward; Herb Duncan; Tom Poshak

Current Membership:

  • 198 active members


  • Luncheon meetings: coincide with MMEA or MENC conventions
    • MMEA Convention: attended by 140+ active Lambda member
      –Chamber group [often from area military bases] performs at luncheon
      –Lambda Chapter recognizes bands that performed at national events the prior year
  • Meeting sites include: Columbia; St. Louis; Cape Girardeau; Kansas City; Jefferson City; Tan-Tar-A


  • Charles Emmons Outstanding Band Director Award and Student Scholarship [yearly]
    –Mr. Emmons was a charter member and long-time Director of Bands at the UM-Columbia


  • Claude T. Smith Memorial Composition Contest for Young Composers
    –The Lambda Chapter of Phi Beta Mu established a band composition contest in 1982 under the leadership of prominent band composer Claude T. Smith, a member of the Lambda Chapter.  Following Smith’s death in 1987 the contest was renamed the Claude T. Smith Memorial Band Composition Contest. The original intent of this contest was to encourage young composers of band music and is held every three years.  A cash scholarship award of $5,000 is awarded to the winner of this contest. More »


  • Monday night concert reception at Missouri Bandmasters Association Summer Convention
  • Claude T. Smith Band Memorial Composition Contest [every 3 years]:
    –Contest is open to composers 30 years of age or younger.
    –Composition  must be a grade 3-4 level and conform to standard band instrumentation.
    Claude T. Smith began the composition contest in 1985 and the contest was renamed in his honor following his death in 1987.
    Winners include: David Gorham; Darren Jenkins; Andy Boysen (twice); Ken Hakoda; Kyle Kindred; Christopher Tucker; Carl Holmquist; Joseph Earp

Special Project:
Publication of The History of Missouri Bands: 1900-2000 by Lambda charter member C. Herbert Duncan.

  • Book was co-published with Missouri Bandmasters Association
  • $12,000 was raised by both groups for writing, editing and publishing of the historical work
  • 361-page book includes the history of college, high school and community bands; historical information on music organizations, band festivals, the STL World’s Fair and Missouri pioneers in the band movement

 Funding Contributions:

  • Founding of the Missouri Bands Together Fund: developed to foster a fraternal spirit among Missouri bands through financial contributions to bands that have experienced unusual hardships. 
    Initial project: donation of over $11,000 to Chippewa Falls [WI] High School Band following a tragic bus accident involving directors and band members.
  • Additional projects: St. James High School Band [Derek Limback, Director]; Joplin High School Band [Rick Castor, Director]. Although not part of the Missouri Bands Together Fund, this project encouraged the Lambda Chapter to take up donations for individual band directors who have faced serious hardships.