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Staff Sergeant Katherine E. Stites

Staff Sergeant Katherine Stites is an oboist with the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West, Travis AFB, CA.  She also serves as the NCOIC of Golden West Winds and the Unit Training Manager. Originally from Johnson City, TN, her Air Force career began in 2014 with the USAF Academy Band, Peterson SFB, CO.

SSgt Stites is a 2011 graduate of Baldwin Wallace University Conservatory of Music, Berea, OH, where she earned a Bachelor of Music degree in oboe performance.  In 2013, she received a Master of Music degree from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Cincinnati, OH. Her teachers include Jeffrey Rathbun, Mark Ostoich, Dwight Parry and Jonathan Blumenfeld. SSgt Stites held positions with the Owensboro Symphony and the Johnson City Symphony and has performed with The Cleveland Orchestra, Colorado Springs Philharmonic, Lexington Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra. She attended the Kent/Blossom Music Festival for two summers as well as the Brevard Music Festival prior to joining the United States Air Force.

EDUCATION
2011 – Bachelor of Music, Baldwin Wallace University, Berea, OH
2013 – Master of Music, University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Cincinnati, OH

ASSIGNMENTS
November 2014 – May 2022, USAF Academy Band, Peterson SFB, CO
May 2022 – present, USAF Band of the Golden West, Travis AFB, CA

MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Air and Space Commendation Medal
Air and Space Achievement Medal
Air and Space Organizational Excellence Award
AF Good Conduct Medal – 1 Oak Leaf Cluster
National Defense Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Air and Space Longevity Service Award – 1 Oak Leaf Cluster
USAF NCO PME Graduate Ribbon – 1 Oak Leaf Cluster
Air and Space Training Ribbon
 

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS
2016 – Airman of the 3rd Quarter, USAF Academy Band, Peterson SFB, CO
2017 – Musician of the 4th Quarter, USAF Academy Band, Peterson SFB, CO
2020 -  Musician of the 4th Quarter, USAF Academy Band, Peterson SFB, CO
2021 – NCO of the 3rd Quarter, USAF Academy Band, Peterson SFB, CO

 

EFFECTIVE DATE OF PROMOTION
A1C – September 2014
SrA – January 2017
SSgt – February 2019

 

Current as of April 2023