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Arizona

480-560-8731

United Sound is an organization whose mission is to provide musical performance experiences for students with special needs through peer mentorship.

Board Members

Our board members bring a range of expertise to accomplish our mission to provide musical performance experiences to students with special needs through peer mentorship.

Our board members bring a range of expertise to accomplish our mission to provide musical performance experiences to students with special needs through peer mentorship.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Brian Mikes is an Entrepreneur and Angel Investor.  He owns a number of small businesses including a publishing company, a mobile marketing business, a travel agency, and a cabinet company.  He’s always looking for his next investment.

Brian is an original investor in Betwext.com, a top rated mobile marketing company. GivingText.org, Betwext’s sister company, specializes in mobile marketing for nonprofit organizations. Brian assists both companies with online advertising, marketing and sales.  Through his leadership, the companies have grown over 500%.

Brian’s skill set is in Marketing and Finance.  He works extensively with small business owners in the areas of business systems, marketing & sales, and finance.  Brian works to streamline business operations, and turn companies profitable.   

Brian is a member of the Development Council at Mesa Community College.  He acts as Special Advisor to the Founder of United Sound.  Brian spent more than a decade as an investment banker in San Francisco, raising $5 Billion for technology businesses and advising them on Mergers & Acquisitions strategies.  Brian is a graduate of Claremont McKenna College.  

Jennifer Thye.png

Jennifer Thye is an Arizona native, a former high school educator and founding owner of event planning company, Imoni Events.  She’s mother to three future musicians and is married to her college sweetheart, Band Director, Joshua Thye.  Jennifer and Josh met while performing musicals and choir concerts in high school. However, they fell in love in the halls of the music building at the University of Arizona, where she eventually graduated magna cum laude with a BA in history.  She continued her singing career in Phoenix as she earned her MA in curriculum and instruction from Arizona State University. 

As an educator Jennifer was quickly promoted to teaching honors level courses and was the youngest member of the district wide curriculum map writing team where she outlined and detailed all the American History lessons in her subject area, for the entire junior year curriculum. In the four years she taught, she was awarded numerous student and staff voted accolades in addition to  undefeated seasons in JV girls basketball and sold out proms as a student council sponsor. But the highlight of her teaching career was accompanying students to Washington DC, China, and numerous European countries, teaching them about geographical affects on politics, culture and history. Creating moments for deep understanding and life long compassion. 

Following her career in education, Jennifer discovered her passion for entrepreneurship and started her own company as a luxury event planner.  She specializes in destination clientele hosting intimate affairs in beautiful locations, but she loves planning events locally in order to bring life to her community. When she is not designing events, she is going back to her roots of coaching and teaching. As a sought after key note speaker and business coach, Jennifer has spent the last seven elevating the event businesses into a true marketable and profitable industry.  She founded the Wedding Symposium seven years ago in attempt to create more leaders in her field.  As Arizona’s only Martha Stewart endorsed wedding planning agency, Imoni Events is also nationally recognized every year via publications like The Knot, Style Me Pretty and Wedding Wire.  Featured at least once a month online and in print, Imoni Events continues to set standards high for the event planning companies and their owners. 

Dr. Robert Hunter is the Director of Instrumental Music at Mesa Community College. Dr. Robert Hunter is the Director of Instrumental Music at Mesa Community College. Over the past twelve years he has led the college’s instrumental and music education programs. He has also coordinated a four year undergraduate music education degree with MCC and Ottawa University. Most recently he served on the committee that completed and opened a new 20MM Performing Arts Center at MCC. Upon completion of the new facility he led the way in creating a summer music camp that now serves over 400 High School and Jr. High School band students each year.

Dr. Hunter is an active adjudicator and clinician. He has guest-conducted, adjudicated, and presented clinics to bands and orchestras in over twenty States and four Canadian Provinces. He has led collegiate, public school and professional performance groups in the United States, Canada, and across Europe. In 2013, he was selected by the Arizona Music Educator’s Association as the recipient of the Arizona Excellence in Music Teaching Award. He currently serves on the board of United Sound, volunteers for the National Band Association, and has collaborated with Alice Cooper’s Solid Rock Foundation.

For seven years Dr. Hunter was on the staff of the Macy’s Great American Marching Band at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. For nine years he was the Director of the Phoenix Symphony Guild Symphonic Winds. In past years, he has taught classes in Jazz Studies at Arizona State University. Dr. Hunter has served as the President for the Arizona Unit of the International Association for Jazz Education and as the Vice President for the Arizona Band and Orchestra Directors Association. Prior to his college appointment he taught high school music as well as serving as the Performing Arts Department Chair of his institution.

Dr. Hunter continues to have an active presence as a performer. His trumpet repertoire and performances span classical, jazz and commercial music. He also works and performs for several sports teams including the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Arizona Cardinals.

Dr. Hunter completed his Doctor of Musical Arts degree at Arizona State University. He also holds a Master of Music degree from ASU, as well as a Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Western Ontario, Canada. He also attended the Tanglewood Music Center, the Banff Centre, and the Royal Conservatory of Music. Dr. Hunter strives to mentor and inspire students with his passion and love of music.