Maj. Ryan J. Nowlin, a 1996 graduate of North Royalton High School (NRHS) and member of the NRHS Alumni Hall of Fame, was recently nominated to be the next Director of “The President’s Own” United States Marine Band. Col. Jason K. Fettig, who was appointed as the 28th Director of the Marine Band in 2014, will relinquish the office of Director and Commanding Officer of the Marine Band on Dec. 20, 2023, and join the faculty of the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance as Director of Bands and professor in the Department of Conducting.
Nowlin got his start as a member of the NRHS band program, playing french horn and trumpet as well as piano. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music education from Bowling Green State University and was a music teacher for 10 years.
Nowlin’s love for music didn’t stop there. He joined the Marine Band as staff arranger in August 2010. He was then appointed Assistant Director and commissioned a first lieutenant in July 2014, later earning the rank of Captain in July 2016. He was promoted to Associate Director in January 2020.
According to the official website of the United States Marine Corps, Nowlin has arranged and composed a variety of music for the Marine Band, Marine Chamber Orchestra, and other ensembles. He has written arrangements for various guest artists for national events, including Beyoncé (“The Star-Spangled Banner”), Kelly Clarkson (“America”), and Jordin Sparks (“The Star-Spangled Banner”). Nowlin’s music has been performed at numerous White House events, including receptions, state dinners, and Fourth of July celebrations.
Nowlin is no stranger to how important it is to have music in your life from a young age thanks to his experiences at NRHS. A dedicated advocate of music education, he currently manages Marine Band educational outreach initiatives such as Music in the Schools, Music in the High Schools, Tour Educational Outreach, and the Concerto Competition for High School Musicians.
The U.S. Marine Band will be on tour this fall and is scheduled to perform at Severance Hall on Oct. 30, 2023.