Director of School of Music Snead gets job done

Director of School of Music Snead gets job done

Ashanka Kumari

When Charles G. Snead is asked what his job entails, his response is simple and sincere.

“Whatever needs to be done,” said Snead, director of the University of Alabama School of Music.

“A typical day may range from budgetary decisions to meetings with potential donors to moving furniture around the building and helping to clean things up,” Snead said. “There is no job around the building or associated with the program that is too big or too small to demand my attention. Anything and everything that needs to be done falls within the parameters of the expectations of my job.”

Appointed School of Music director in 2004, Snead oversees all of the administrative aspects of operation of the School of Music, including personnel, budgets, degree and curricular programs, community relations, fundraising, development, short and long-range planning and a variety of other daily requirements.

“It is my passion for this University and this School of Music that keeps me striving to offer my very best every day,” Snead said. “When I accepted this position, I told the rest of my colleagues in our first faculty meeting together, ‘I now officially work for you,’ and I sincerely meant that. That belief embodies the reason that I do this job.”

Ken Ozzello, director of bands, said that he has worked with Snead for 22 years and feels that he is the best administrator he’s worked with during his entire career as an educator.

“His even temper serves as a great catalyst for meeting the diverse needs of a School of Music,” Ozzello said. “He has great vision and understands how to move everyone towards the mission of the organization.”

Snead has also been the professor of horn at the University for 23 years.

“In addition to my administrative responsibilities, I average about 10 contact hours of teaching per week,” Snead said. “It makes for some very long, but mostly rewarding days that frequently begin around 6:30 a.m. and push well into the late hours of the evening. Much of what goes in the School of Music, such as concerts and other presentations, occurs in the evening.”

Osiris J. Molina, assistant professor of clarinet, said Snead is a strong leader who emphasizes fairness and excellence.

“He has had great results with the new hires in the department, and the school is definitely on its way up,” Molina said. “He is also a fine musician, facilitator and advocate for the school. The school will only continue on an upward trend with [Snead] leading the way.”

Snead attended public school in Atlanta, Georgia, where he was born, but moved to Jacksonville, Florida in 1975.

“Upon graduation from high school, I was fortunate enough to win an audition with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, so I moved to Jacksonville to become a professional horn player,” Snead said.

While in Jacksonville, Snead earned a bachelor of music in horn performance from Jacksonville University and remained a member of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra until 1981, when he began work on his graduate degree at the University of Georgia. By 1984, he had earned a Master’s degree in horn performance and had completed all of the resident coursework for a doctor of musical arts degree.

“I was hired as assistant professor of horn at Murray State University in Murray, Ky. in 1984,” Snead said. “Murray provided a wonderful opportunity for growth as a teacher and professional and set the stage for my move to the University of Alabama in 1988.”

Throughout his 23 years at the Capstone, Snead said he has been able to continue his growth as a professional musician with opportunities to perform worldwide.

“I get to work everyday with some of the finest professionals that you’ll find anywhere in the country,” Snead said. “As an administrator, I am in the enviable position of being inspired by my colleagues. They push me to keep being better.”

A school of music is not simply a building, Ozzello said. It is the faculty who works in the building.

“The team of faculty that Professor Snead has assembled during his tenure is unbelievably talented,” Ozzello said. “I believe his legacy will be this team that has moved the school to greater national prominence.”