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Technical Sergeant Denver Murphy

Technical Sergeant Denver Murphy hails from Southern Illinois and joined the United States Air Force Academy Band, Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado, in 2022. He currently performs as lead vocalist with Wild Blue, the Air Force’s flagship country rock band.

His primary teachers include Liz Johnson, Terry Chasteen and the late Bart Shanklin. He has collaborated with a number of talented artists including: Kastriot Tusha, Melinda Doolittle, Lynda Lybeck-Robinson, Alyssa Schwary, and the late Scott Steed - and has opened stages for popular groups such as Sick Puppies, Love and Theft, Chase Bryant, The Oak Ridge Boys, Tullamore, and The Shalva Band, respectfully. Coaches include Gregory Martin, Ben Harris, Andrea Molina, Jason Aquila, and Bernadette Lo. He has performed under the direction of Craig Jessop, Michael Christie, Aram Demirjian, James Stegall, Richard Hughey, Rebecca Kreider, Lynn Thompson, as well as the late Steve Workman and Brenda Fauls. His music awards and associations include 2nd overall in Classical Division at NATS: Tri-State Conference, Honorable Mention in Broadway Division at NATS: Central Illinois Conference, both All-State Chorus and All-State Honors Chorus of Illinois, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Kansas City Symphony (KCPT PBS broadcast), and the 2009 performance of John Adams 'On the Transmigration of Souls' with the Phoenix Symphony Chorus honoring those who served during the events of 9/11/2001. 

Murphy deployed in 2014 and 2017 with Starlifter as the AFCENT Band in Southwest and Central Asia. Significant productions and collaborations from those tours include, but are not limited to: The World’s Fair and Expo; Doha Singers; AFN Bahrain, Radio Astana Kazakhstan, and Oriat FM Uzbekistan; and an album, "Carry On", which featured a track that later won 2nd Place in the "Outstanding Studio Recording" category of the 2015 Air Force Media Contest. Additionally, those teams proudly shared a part in the Public Affairs Al Udeid Air Base Staff Third Quarter Team Award. At USAFE, Murphy tracked voiceovers for the debut U.S. National Day at the brand-new Embassy at Jerusalem; composed and recorded jingles for AFN Kaiserslautern; performed on Radio Saarbrucken 99.6, RTVF Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Top Channel Albania; contributed to the DoDDs Jazz Seminar; and was the featured bass-baritone soloist with the Rheinland-Pfalz International Choir’s production of Ralph Vaughan Williams ‘Dona Nobis Pacem,’ commemorating 100 years since the end of World War 1. Murphy also shares involvement in winning the 2019 “Major Henry H. ‘Hap’ Arnold Award for Public Affairs Communication Effectiveness,” supporting Mr. Tony Foulds and the 75th Anniversary of the United States “Mi Amigo” bomber crash. One of his proudest accomplishments came in 2020 when he penned and narrated an original work, “Silent Night, the historic Christmas Truce,” that was featured on PBS. He has had the privilege of performing for ambassadors and dignitaries, including: Alexander, Crown Prince of Yugoslavia; Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Abdullah Oripov, Prime Minister of Albania Edi Rama, President of Albania Ilir Meta, Former Secretary of State Condolezza Rice, Governor Bruce Rauner of Illinois, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Dunford, Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force Cody, Chief Chaplain of the Air Force Major General Costin, SEAC Colon Lopez, as well as on The Bobby Bones Show, The Grand Ol Opry, The Albuquerque International Balloon Festival, WGN Morning News, BBC Breakfast, and at major league sporting events at the NFL UK, Green Bay Packers, Denver Broncos, St. Louis Rams, Minnesota Twins, Kansas City Royals, St. Louis Cardinals, Colorado Rockies, Snocross, Chicago Bulls, United States Golf Association, Pikes Peak Rodeo, and the Sports Car Club of America. In 2019, President Donald Trump awarded some 6,500 musicians of the United States Military the National Medal of Arts, alongside Allison Krauss, Sharon Rockefeller, and Jon Voight. 

Prior to enlistment, Murphy was the Arts and Culture Recreation Coordinator with the City of Unalaska/Port of Dutch Harbor (AK), member of the Aleutian Arts Council, and contributor to KUCB 87.9FM/Channel 8 TV and the Convention & Visitors Bureau, in addition to various roles including studio instructor, arts administrator, and voiceover artist. He is a proud member of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. Other memberships include Rho Phi Lambda Honors Fraternity, Mortar Board National Senior Honors Society, and Air Force Sergeants Association.

2022 Forrest L. Vosler Non-Commissioned Officer Academy, Peterson Space Force Base
2021 Master of Arts, Liberty University
2017 Associates in Applied Science, Community College of the Air Force
2016 CMSAF Bud Andrews Airman Leadership School, Scott Air Force Base
2010 Environmental Conservation & Outdoor Education Expedition (ECOEE), Western Illinois University
2010 Bachelor of Science, Western Illinois University

Air Force Commendation Medal with one device
Air and Space Achievement Medal with one device
Air and Space Overseas Service Ribbon - Long Tour
Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with Gold Border with one device
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon (Pistol)
Humanitarian Service Medal
USAF NCO PME Graduate Ribbon with one device
Air and Space Training Ribbon
Air Force Good Conduct Medal with two devices
Air and Space Longevity Service Award with one device
Air and Space Organizational Excellence Award with one device
Meritorious Unit Award with two devices
National Defense Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
German Armed Forces Badge of Marksmanship, Gold (Bundeswehr/Schützenschnur)

Public Affairs Award for Communication Excellence, NCO Category, USAF Academy Band, 2023
Musician of the Quarter, USAF Academy Band, 4th Quarter, 2023
Best Live Recording, USAF Public Affairs Media Contest, 2022
Graduate of the Last Decade (GOLD) Award, Undergraduate, Western Illinois University RPTA PDC, 2020
Musician of the Quarter, United States Air Forces in Europe Band, 2nd Quarter, 2019
Junior Enlisted of the Quarter, Air Mobility Command/Public Affairs, 4th Quarter, 2016
Junior Enlisted of the Quarter, Band of Mid-America, 4th Quarter, 2016
Airman of the Year, Air Mobility Command/Public Affairs, 2015
Airman of the Year, Band of Mid-America, 2015
Outstanding Musician of the Year, Band of Mid-America, 2015
Senior Airman Below-the-Zone, 1st Quarter, 2015
Airman of the Quarter, Air Mobility Command/Public Affairs, 1st Quarter, 2015
Airman of the Quarter, Band of Mid-America, 1st Quarter, 2015
Outstanding New Public Affairs Musician (1st Runner-Up), USAF Public Affairs Media Contest, 2014
Outstanding New Public Affairs Musician, Air Mobility Command/Public Affairs, 2014
Hard Charger Award, United States Air Forces Central Command/Public Affairs Squadron, June, 2014

AUG – OCT 2013, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas
OCT 2013 – JAN 2018, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois
JAN 2018 – MAR 2022, Ramstein Air Base, Germany
MAR 2022 – Present, Peterson Space Force Base, Colorado

Airman First Class – August 14, 2013
Senior Airman – June 14, 2015
Staff Sergeant – June 1, 2017
Technical Sergeant – March 2, 2022